Today we got to mill the gravy train tree! A massive behemoth, too wide for us to cut normally, so we had to get creative.

A view from the stump, the tree is on a pretty good slope

So this tree is way too big to just cut up into logs, plus it’s situated on a spur of the mountain with dropoffs on either side. It is too wide at the base for us to get our mill on, and it is on an extreme decline. Easy peasy! We started off at the top of the tree, where it is skinnier, and just started cutting straight down into it at the lengths we needed. We cut out sections where our mill could fit into and started skimming off the top.

You can see Steve making the first cut with the mill, and you can kinda see me cutting a place for him to come out

Then we just took the slabs off to the side…

The skill saw was needed to make a straight edge

and turned those into beautiful lumber!

Mmm, wall studs

Later on we figured out how to get around the issue of the tree being too wide for our mill: we used the skill saw to make an edge at the max width, and used an ax to clear out the extra! Today was our most productive day yet!

Milling can be back breaking work, so I give my back a break by lounging like I’m in a Renaissance painting while I make the cut.

But now I must tell you of our sad saw saga. Our new Magnum 880 is out of commission for the rest of the trip, which means we are using our less reliable, used and abused, Magnum as our main saw. There is a plastic gear which pumps the oil for the bar, and it snapped. There is a spare back in Sobega, but we have no way to get it to us. What’s more, we broke another chain tensioner today which leaves us with one more remaining.

Our third to break, only one remaines

Anyways, remember that kid who cut his finger last trip? He came by yesterday…

Smiling for a photo is not a cultural imperative I guess

and it is looking a lot better! He even wiggled the tip for me so everything must be connectedly well.

Nothing but a scar

Also, remember that hill they needed to take out to make a chopper pad? It’s gone now!

Thank you for your prayers!

Categories: EnglishStous


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