Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Majestic Tree

I had a couple of hours after work today to do some forest exploration, and there was one particular Douglas Fir I wanted to measure that I found a couple weeks ago. After wrapping the tape around the old beast, it became a personal record breaker with a cbh of 21 feet, 8 inches. The Douglas Fir was growing in a second generation redwood forest. There were massive stumps all around, and I longed to see what the forest once looked like. It seemed to be recovering nicely, but I don't know how this forest is managed. It may be on the chopping block at any time for all I know. What made this day even more special was my return trip to my vehicle. After emerging from the forest I was walking along road 20 and I glanced across the street and saw what looked like a hunkering redwood giant way up on the hillside. There seem to be no old growth redwoods anywhere around here so I assumed it was probably two or three medium sized trees growing near each other giving the illusion of a distant giant, watching over the road way up on the hill.
(Ginat Douglas Fir crown on left, growing next to The Majestic Tree on the right)
It was worth checking out, and after climbing the hill, I was in absolute awe. It was one of the most beautiful redwoods my eyes have ever seen. Perhaps due to spending the afternoon looking at smaller second generation trees made this one hit me the way it did. It was totally unexpected, and had one of the most interesting crowns. There were enormous branches, and several gigantic limbs protruding from the main trunk. I mean GIGANTIC limbs. I wish I could climb this tree and see what's up there. After driving this road probably close to a hundred times in the last year and three months, I never have seen this tree from my car, despite constantly scanning the hillsides. Maybe it's not visible from the car. It may be the grandest tree in the area for all I know. I felt truly blessed to experience for a moment what this area actually did once look like.
(The Majestic Tree)

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