Jack’s Walk

What do you see? ©voyager, all rights reserved

Sometimes Jack and I amuse ourselves by playing a game called “Tree See.” We invented the game, and the rules are simple. You look around the forest until you find an image hidden in the branches or on a fallen log and then you point and ask the other person what they see.  If you both see the same thing, the point goes to the person who found the sculpture. If you both see something different, the point goes to the second person who was asked for their opinion. It’s a silly game, really, but it helps pass the time, especially on a winter’s walk when there isn’t much to look at. Jack is better at the game than I am. I think it’s because he’s lower to the ground, but today Jack tells me that it’s because I’m a slow-witted human who lacks imagination. Ouch, Bubba, that stings.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ,

Tree Tuesday

Minnesota was logging country in the late 1800s, and as a result, most of the state’s old-growth trees were cut down. At present, only 2% of trees in Minnesota’s forests are considered old-growth, but there is an extraordinary place known as The Lost 40, where the elderly giants survive en masse. It’s an area of 144 acres of pure old-growth forest, and its survival until now is due to a mapping error.

In 1882, a surveying and mapping error made loggers believe that the entire section of the forest was underwater, so they passed through it. This area, which is actually located in the Chippewa National Forest, was therefore never logged, and the trees that were growing then continue to grow now.
The tradition of leaving the Lost 40 untouched has remained, and the forest section is still thriving as a result. There is nowhere else in the Midwest like the Lost 40, since most of the trees in other forests are much younger than this swath of centenarians growing in the Midwest.

 

 

Story via: Atlas Obscura, where you can find more photos and a small map.

Tree Tuesday

Photo by Biosphoto/Almay from Atlas Obscura

Meet Big Lonely Doug, one of the last old-growth trees left in Canada.

Big Lonely Doug—named after its species, the Douglas fir—stands tall among a clearing, a solitary specimen surrounded by stumps and logging debris. It soars about 230 feet high and its trunk is as big as a living room. Local conservationists estimate it to be between 750 and 1,200 years old.
Despite the region’s booming logging industry (a staggering 99 percent of the old-growth Douglas firs in British Colombia have been cut down) a logger spared Big Lonely Doug from being felled in 2012. No one is quite sure why this particular mature tree was saved. It turns out it is the second-largest Douglas fir in Canada.
Big Lonely Doug still stands tall, now a sad but majestic symbol of the disappearing old-growth forests of British Colombia, and the ongoing fight to save them.

You can visit Big lonely Doug, but you’ll have to hike the last 1.5 km to the site. He lives near Port Renfrew, B.C., and perhaps he’d like a bit of company, as long as you’re polite and respectful of his age and his home. There are more photos at the link below.

 

Story via: Atlas Obscura

Tree Tuesday

Photo courtesy of Sharris, from Atlas Obscura

Say hello to Canada’s knottiest tree. This massive cedar tree has a giant burl growing out of its lower trunk and lives in a grove that was discovered in 2009 and has been protected from logging since 2012.

This lush grove near Port Renfrew is filled with large western red cedars and Douglas firs. Many trees seem to be growing out of each other, with knots and burls as if there was a struggle to break free of their bark.
The highlight of the grove is Canada’s gnarliest tree, a massive cedar with a giant burl growing out of its lower trunk. This whimsical giant stands tall, overseeing the cathedral grove.

There are walking paths into the grove and visitors are welcome, but the paths can be slippery and difficult to navigate. There are more photos at the Atlas Obscura link below as well as a small map.

 

via Atlas Obscura

Tree Tuesday

photo by Canadagood, via Atlas Obscura

 

Today’s tree is a stubborn little Douglas Fir, who found an unusual and somewhat lonely place to grow.

Seventy miles from the port city of Victoria, British Columbia on Vancouver Island, a plucky arboreal wonder can be found on the quiet waters of Fairy Lake.
Living up to its name, Fairy Lake is in a remote and unspoiled landscape near the town of Port Renfrew. Sticking up out of the lake’s stillness is a submerged log. Clinging to that log for dear life is a tiny Douglas fir-tree. The log itself is a Douglas fir. As the stunted tree’s only source of support and nutrients, it feels like the dead tree made a sort of noble sacrifice to the tiny tree growing on it. Tourists, boaters and hikers come seeking it as a unique window into nature and rebirth.

The tree is referred to as the “Bonsai” tree and has been attracting lots of photographers, some even producing award-winning photos.

Photo by Shawn McCready for Atlas Obscura

Atlas Obscura says it’s easy to get to the tree and gives directions to the site at the link below. There are also a few more photos at the link. If you go, please share with us any photos you take.

Via Atlas Obscura

 

Tree Tuesday

Earlier this year VBFF sent in a chainsaw sculpture from a nearby city tour she’d taken. Today, VBFF has sent us a couple of other chainsaw made sculptures from the same visit.  Most of the statues were carved in place around the community, hoping to draw shoppers to the area and promote tourism. Here’s the link to the Tree Trunk Tour in London, Ontario, if you’d like to know more about the sculptures and how they’re made.

©VBFF, all rights reserved

©VBFF, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

Early December Morning, ©voyager, all rights reserved

 

We had a gentle, light dusting of snow this morning, and it was just enough to make the world look fresh and pretty for a while. That’s one of the things I like about winter, the way that snow covers a landscape with a coat of crisp, clean stillness. Ogden Nash says it much better than me, though, so I’ll let him.

 

Winter Morning Poem

Winter is the king of showmen,
Turning tree stumps into snow men
And houses into birthday cakes
And spreading sugar over lakes.
Smooth and clean and frosty white,
The world looks good enough to bite.
That’s the season to be young,
Catching snowflakes on your tongue!
Snow is snowy when it’s snowing.
I’m sorry it’s slushy when it’s going.

– Ogden Nash

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

Well, Jack and I did venture out yesterday. Twice. About 1 in the afternoon, the sun came out for an hour or so, and the sidewalks got all melty and full of slush. It seemed like a good time to go for a walk, and so we did. It was a delightful walk, too. Sloppy and cold, but not really icy. The sun started to melt the ice off the trees and the wires, but it didn’t shine long enough to raise the temp above zero, and so today, the trees are still frosted. Jack and I went out again after supper, and the sidewalk slush had turned into rough frozen ice. It wasn’t as slippery as I’d thought. The snow that covered the ice helped rough it up, and the soles of my boots were mostly able to find traction. Even Jack managed better with only 1 slip and no falls. Today the world remains frosted with ice and snow, and I love the way things look. There’s so much more light, and it reflects like millions of tiny, shiny diamonds in the glow of streetlights at night and the short glimpses of the sun today. The walking is difficult, but not dangerous. Most people have shovelled, and what ice remains is rough and well trampled. We need to go slow and shuffle a bit, but it’s so pretty outside I don’t mind.

 

Here’s another song for today. I sing this song when I’m on the beach ins the summer looking for sea glass because they shine like diamonds when you find them. Today the whole world is made of diamonds. And of course, we’re all as bright, and beautiful as diamonds ourselves, so let’s all shine a bit today, too.

 

A Fire Maple for Caine

Caine’s birthday was a week ago today and this just arrived in my inbox. It’s from Raucous Indignation and I think it’s special – So special, in fact, that I decided not to hold it back until Tree Tuesday next week.

I have had a lengthy absence from the blog, but the tree was planted this Spring. It is a fire maple/silver maple hybrid. Very hardy with dramatic colors. The tree is doing well and dropped it leaves a few weeks ago. It’s at the end of the line of cherry, maple and oaks bordering the driveway. It’s to my left every night I come home.

Next, the puppy!

Fire Maple for Caine ©Raucous Indignation, all rights reserved

Fire Maple for Caine ©Raucous Indignation, all rights reserved