The Other “Forest”…

It all starts out at a trailhead within 50 feet of Teal Lake which is less than 2 miles South of Port Ludlow.
Quite a lovely lake stocked with trout and fishable only with barb less single hook flys and other synthetic bait. That would be nice, but I don’t really fish any longer for trout. Les and I had a koi pond in Valley Center and after getting to know the fish, I decided that hunting them with flys and other oddities was a bit over the top.
The trail started out nicely through an open forest
of second (or 3rd) growth cedar and Doug fir.
The usual off piste forest floor growth
Then… the nice sign signifying that I was passing a “Timber Harvest Boundary”

To the left, forest and lake. To the right and all areas surrounding the lake… decimation. It’s called clear cutting. As in clearing away all the trees and leaving… well… not much but rotting stumps, rotting debris, erosion and a few stalwart plants and a few scattered baby fir trees that did not seem to be planted, but grew where they could. It didn’t seem to be much of a managed process… In case you are wondering… I’m not a tree hugger per se. But, since a young age I’ve… hiked long mountain trails, deep forest and riparian glades, the potholes regions left by retreating glaciers, traveled along rivers, forded creeks, streams, and rivulets you could step over, kayaked the beaches of Baja, wandered through sea level desert landscapes and high desert plateaus… And I’ve lived in 10 or so houses made of wood. I’ve built decks and fences with wood. I’ve burned wood in camp fires and stoves to heat the rooms in my houses.

So… I understand the need to log. And of course there are intense debates between environmentalists who cite some of the many environmental negatives of clear cutting such as erosion, habitat distruction, watershed distruction, and those in the lumber industry who provide the wood that is needed by society. There are many forestry scientists who claim that if done correctly, clear cutting can serve forest husbandry well. And, I’m sure that somewhere in the middle the truth lies. It usually does. Compare this blog with my last and see the difference in pictures… not the commercial difference, but the forest health difference. I’m sure there is middle ground somewhere…

Teal Lake in the middle, clearcut surrounding

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