Saturday, May 5, 2012

Jackson State Demonstration Forest

Giant Douglas Fir (above)
I went for a hike in Jackson Demonstration Forest after work a couple days ago. I took a trail that I had hiked last year when I first moved to the area and it was interesting how my perspective has changed. First of all, it was nice to see some old ancient trees growing towards the top of the mountain ridge. I will have to come back and get a circumference of this old giant Douglas Fir that I found off trail.

Secondly, I was able to see the forest in terms of what it's potential is or was, rather than what currently exists. Above is a small section of cut forest. Maybe nothing shocking, but definitely devastating to what used to grow and live there.

I am currently finishing a book called "From the Redwood Forest" by Joan Dunning, that describes the debate around Headwaters that attracted national attention in the mid 90's. (I have to laugh how a Wikipedia page for Charles Hurwitz and his company MAXXAM "does not exist.") It's a long and complicated story, so I won't go into detail here. It's a fascinating read though, and the same problems that existed back then, are currently still playing themselves out now. After looking at what we have done to our forests, it's easy to say "Well, that's just the way it is." When you begin to dissect all the facts, statistics, and hear the stories, it's simply unbelievable.

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