Olympic Peninsula - Part 2

Forks, WA


Back to the Travel Directory

The major industry in this part of the country is logging and lumber mills. Every where you go, there are trucks hauling logs, wood chips or lumber. We had the opportunity to take a tour of some local logging and mills.
More about the mills in Part 3.

We had the opportunity to tour two types of logging. The first is when the ground is flat enough for machines to do most of the work.

The second is when the trees are on a steep slope and have to be cut and de-limbed by hand, using chainsaws. The cut logs must then be lifted/dragged up the mountain to a collection point and put on trucks.

Both types require a road to be developed to carry equipment in and the logs out. The roads which we went on had log and stone bridges over rivers and ravines. Most where just crushed stone and just one lane wide with many side roads going off in different directions.

We were able to watch them operating, talk with the lumbermen, and take pictures. We took many more than what we are posting on the WebSite.

Unfortunately, the night before we toured, the anti-logging jerks "sanded" a lot of the equipment. We were able to see some of the results. The sand was placed in the gas tanks and crankcase of most motors at the second site.

This is the first type of logging.
The yellow machine picks up downed trees by the cut end, then slides the tree sideways through cutters which cut off the branches. It is just starting on a new tree. You can see the branches on the top end.

It also cuts the logs to the correct length.
The orange machine lifts the cut logs and places them on the truck.
It is also used to move stack the cut branches.

The orange machine is loading the truck.

The silver machine, which has its arm up in the air, grabs the tree, cuts it off at the base, then lays it down in a pile for the orange machine to operate on.

Here is the loaded truck, being made ready for its ride to the mill.

This is the second type of logging.
We are now near the top of a mountain. The yellow pole is about 75 feet tall and anchored on eight sides to the surrounding trees.
It has one cable, which is positioned at various points at the base of the mountain. It carries a shuttle which is used to lift logs.

The machine on the left picks up the logs and places them on the truck.

The loggers are explaining their operation to us.

The orange shuttle is radio controlled. It has a motor which lifts the logs.
When the logs are lifted, another cable is used to pull the shuttle to the top.

You can see the strip cut area which appears as brown.
Looking out over the valley, you can see a checkerboard of various size trees which is a result of strip cutting and replanting.

One of the loggers who was vary informative.

Back to the Travel Directory