Pisgah Timber Harvest November 15, 2016 Logging on the Pisgah project wrapped up last Wednesday. All the wood (except firewood for the Trail Bureau garage!) has been trucked and equipment has moved off. All that is left is the final cleanup of the log landing/field, installation of the last few water-bars, etc. This is planned to happen the week after Thanksgiving. November 4, 2016 Work south of the log landing has wrapped up. All the trees have been skidded and water-bars have been installed on slopes. This area includes partial cutting designed to encourage regeneration like red oak and sugar maple, and a clear-cut adjacent to the old orchard which was re-opened in the 1990’s. In the coming years young forest in this area will complement the wildlife habitat provided by the old orchard. Large trees, snags and cavity trees are retained throughout the project for wildlife. They will serve a perches for raptors hunting in the clear cuts, homes for species from birds to bats to small mammals. And when they eventually fall these logs will continue providing habitat for wildlife as diverse as black bear (who will search for grubs under them or den in them!) salamanders (who will den under them) and young trees (which will seed in atop these “nurse logs” as they decay). Now that cutting is complete to the east of the landing on a clear day you can Mt Monadnock to the northeast or a panorama across the Park to the southeast! August 29, 2016 In February the timber harvest was suspended due to the unusually warm and wet weather. This week aided by the dry weather equipment will be moving back on-site to continue the work. The first piece of equipment to arrive will be a “feller-buncher” which cuts and lays down the trees in bundles. Next will be the “grapple skidder”. The skidder will pull bundles or “hitches” of trees to the “log yard” in the field behind the Trails Bureau garage. Most of this timber harvest is away from the Park’s trail system, but you may hear the equipment, or see log trucks and chip vans on Horseshoe Road. Watch for updates and photos as the harvest proceeds. February 2, 2016 Due to the unusually warm and wet weather this winter the timber harvest at Pisgah has been put on hold until the conditions are more suitable, possibly not until dry weather next summer. Only a small portion of the project was completed in the short time the contractors were able to operate. The western most clear cut was completed and revealed a great view into Vermont. A block of mature, declining aspen adjacent to the old orchard off Horseshoe Road was also harvested. The harvested aspen will quickly re-sprout from the roots of the old stumps. This will provide an early successional, young forest habitat type important to many species such as grouse, turkey and hare. Many of the main skid trails were also established in preparation for when the contractor returns. January 21, 2016 The timber harvest at Pisgah State Park is underway. The log yard is set up and trees are being processed into sawlogs, firewood and biomass chips. Most of the cutting so far has been to open up skid trails where the trees will be pulled to the log yard. Some small areas of partial harvesting and a portion of one clear cut has been started. Cold nights help freeze in the skid trails as “hitches” are being pulled by the skidders. January 12, 2016 This week equipment will move on site to start work on the timber harvest P1-597 sold in 2014. The first piece of equipment to arrive will be a “feller-buncher” which cuts and lays down the trees in bundles. As the “buncher” starts moving around the harvest area, its tracks will help to drive the frost deeper down into the ground before the “grapple skidder” arrives the following week. The skidder will pull bundles or “hitches” of trees to the “log yard” in the field behind the Trails Bureau garage. The contractors will also be doing some work at the entrance to the field off Horseshoe Road. This will include making a “stone apron” on the west side of the road to help trucks to make the turn onto the town road. This work will help improve the access to the Park’s snow machine trails for the Trails Bureau groomer. Most of this timber harvest is away from the Park’s trail system, but you may hear the equipment, or see log trucks and chip vans on Horseshoe Road. Watch for updates and photos as the harvest proceeds. For more information on this this project and timber harvesting in State Parks and State Forests, contact Project Forester, Inge Seaboyer at 603-464-3453 or Regional Forester, Will Guinn at 603-271-2214. August 29, 2014 Marking on the P1-597 timber harvest at Pisgah State Park began this week. Work began on the clear cuts that will start the regeneration process and will create young forest habitat which will provide browsing and foraging opportunities as well as cover for a large suite of both game and non-game wildlife species. Riparian buffers of 75 feet will be left unmarked along streams and will be further expanded in areas with steep slopes. Up to eight snag or cavity trees per acre will be retained at the recommendation of Fish and Game to provide additional denning opportunities for wildlife. Large cavity trees, snags and downed wood provide critical habitat for many wildlife species. If existing large standing cavity trees and or snags (dead standing trees) are not in the sale area, trees that may serve that purpose in the future - often large stems which have little value as logs but are very valuable to wildlife will be left. Large diameter cavity trees and snags are especially important, because species which need these, such as barred owls, fisher, grey fox and bear, cannot use smaller stems. Clear cut locations were chosen based on areas of mature and/or declining timber that were identified during a recent timber cruise; a systematic inventory of forest resources that measures sample plots every 200 feet. After careful planning, mapping and review by other agencies such as Fish and Game and the Natural Heritage Bureau, the perimeters of the clear cuts were then flagged out with surveyors tape as well as any riparian buffers along streams or wetlands. Finally a four person crew of foresters measures and marks the trees with blue paint. A dot indicates a pulp tree for making paper products, firewood, or chips while a stripe indicates a sawlog tree for creating dimensional and finish lumber, flooring or furniture. As trees are marked the foresters calls out the species, diameter and height which are recorded in a book by the “tally man”. The “tally” can then be used to generate the volumes of timber by species and product for sale at public bid. For more information on this this project and timber harvesting in State Parks and State Forests, contact Regional Forester, Will Guinn at 603-271-2214 or Project Forester, Inge Seaboyer at 603-464-3453. August 7, 2014 The Division of Forest and Lands is in the planning stages to harvest timber and improve wildlife habitat on 140.1 acres at Pisgah State Park during the winter of 2014-2015. This project is located in the management Criteria 3 area as described in the Pisgah State Park Management Plan. To accomplish the even-aged forest prescription for Criteria 3, this project includes nine clear cuts ranging in size from 3 to 12 acres, totaling 48.4 acres. One clear-cut area will enlarge the fields and be maintained as shrub land for wildlife habitat. Two other clear-cuts planned will create young forest habitat adjacent to the old orchard off Horseshoe Road to be managed in conjunction with the NH Fish and Game Department. The remaining clear cuts will regenerate areas damaged by the 2008 and 2010 ice storms and blocks of mature and/or declining trees. 77.6 acres will be thinned to improve growing space for the remaining trees and 14 acres will be left as buffers along streams and wetlands. For more information on this this project and timber harvesting in State Parks and State Forests, contact Regional Forester, Will Guinn at 603-271-2214 or Project Forester, Inge Seaboyer at 603-464-3453.