It’s autumn. That means hunting season for some and mushroom picking for others. For me, it means time to hit the forest and start up the chainsaws. There is nothing like the feeling when you come to a forest site knowing that you will work there until it’s finished. In my case, it’s about young thinning.
A day in the forest
I wouldn’t mind doing some clear-cutting with my chainsaws. But nowadays, here in Sweden, almost all felling is done by machines, also thinning. My luck is that I found forest owners who don’t believe in bringing harvesters to young thinning. Where I started working last Monday, the forest owner does the forwarding with his ATV and grapple loader. I do the thinning.
Actually, I started already two weeks ago by felling some bark-beetle-damaged spruce trees on the same estate where I’m now thinning. I thought two weeks of resting, and recovery could be a good idea at the beginning of the season. When I think about that I did this five days a week for six years in a row once … Well, that was then.
Just for fun
Some of my friends ask me why I went back to working in the forest with chain- and clearing saws. The thing is that I have been working with a lot within forestry for the last 40 + years. Logging with chainsaws, operating harvesters, forwarders, chippers, scarifiers, and even a short career (very short) as a timber truck driver. I am an educated forester, have organized forestry shows, and have sold forestry equipment.
Sooner or later, you must summarize your life. I prefer to do it sooner because then you can make some “last-minute” adjustments. Looking back there is only one thing or profession I would like to go back to, and that’s logging with a chainsaw. Everything else I’ve done; I don’t miss a bit even though I enjoyed it at the time.
Also, I prefer to look forward. That’s why I started a new career as an editor when I was close to 60. I still haven’t decided what to do when I grow up. Or to quote Mick Jagger, “It’s not about growing up, it’s about not growing up.” He is right you know – you must have fun and don’t let something as trivial as aging stop you.
That’s why I work in the forest with a chainsaw – again.
I see only benefits with hard work in the forest. You can cancel your gym card, stop taking evening walks, stop sports activities, and get fit just by working. When summer comes you will have no problems fitting into your bathing suit.
Of course, you wish to make it through the logging season alive and sound. So, make sure you have the right equipment and safety measurements. I wrote an article on how to prepare for the logging season that you can read here. My good advice, if you feel uncertain about something, is to talk to your chainsaw dealer or do a chainsaw course.
Have fun and take care out there!