» Tree Down from Free Fall to Guided – Safe

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The tree in middle

The tree in middle

A loud crack and crash greeted our morning at about 5 am.  It was the part of the top of our neighbor’s Historic and Giant Western Cedar tree breaking off and coming down.

When we went to investigate we could see that the top had gone through the neighbor’s garage roof and another large branch had taken out our fencing, some of the landscaping and fortunately missed the house and the deck.

The whole situation was assessed and it became apparent that the entire tree would need to come down for safety reasons and to save the house which was built around it.   Someone about 40 years ago had TOPPED the tree and 3 new trees had grown from the cut off spot.   I had heard all my life NEVER TOP A TREE and we certainly got a lesson on how dangerous that practice can be.

First Acsent

First Acsent

It was estimated to cost about $10,000.00 to remove the tree for lumber or sale – the wood is stunning. But the insurance would not cover that large a cost.  It was decided to cut the tree and fell it into the woods on the bluff allowing it to become a nursery log.   Large branches were removed and the top came down.

Top half down

Top half down

It was amazing to witness.  The section began in slow motion to come down and tilt towards the rope and pulleys.   It just lay on air for a second or two, followed by a free fall and finally a race to crashing down.   One of the loggers took a movie of the descent.

The skilled crew enjoys their work

The skilled crew enjoys their work

On to the second half, and we were all prepared for the lift and the ballet of this fall.

What remains to ground out

What remains to ground out

It has been an exciting week and we have learned many lessons and how the city, county, state, and insurance companies work with Acts of Nature.   Architects need to know and understand these big trees before they design the structure and we all need to know the rule DO NOT TOP THE TREE.

Mount Rainer watches tree fall

Mount Rainer watches tree fall

I know that some of these pictures are a bit blurry, but I did the best I could with the cellphone camera and my shaky hands.  I believed that it would still make a good story even when not being picture perfect.

Do you understand the trees in your life?  What is the life of the tree you know?  Trees help us breathe clean air, do we help them?  When is it an act of Nature and when is it encroachment?

Related Reading:
Trees Coming Down (Patricia’s Wisdom)
The Tree of Life (Patricia’s Wisdom)
Men in Trees (Patricia’s Wisdom)
Falling Trees

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Fri, January 18 2013 » Discoveries

One Response

  1. Patricia January 21 2013 @ 7:19 pm

    My Neighbor has pointed out a correction that needs to be made here. The branches that came down were not part of the top 3 new trees – they had been wired together for safety years ago.

    The 5 foot diameter branch that came down on our fence was a branch from the tree itself, one of numerous ones which came down that morning and like the one which went through the garage. FYI…now I have even more of the story to share.
    Patricia´s last blog post ..Tree Down from Free Fall to Guided – Safe

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