Helping out

So, we have a neighbour who had a huge white pine in his front yard that, unfortunately, was destined to cause a big disaster. It had large branch on it that was completely dead and when the arbourist came to look at it he basically said the whole tree was a gonner. This is really unfortunate, because it was a lovely tree. And big. Did I mention that? How big you might ask? Well, it was over 1m (3 feet) in diameter at the base.

Anyway, our neighbour had some professionals come over and cut it down last autumn, but then he had this big tree just lying in his yard. He had been looking for someone to come take it off his hands so we volunteered. I’m not going to say no to free wood. However, it wasn’t just as simple as going over, cutting it up and hauling it away. Let’s look at some pictures.

This is the stump of the tree. It’s difficult to really get a sense of how big it is from the picture; there isn’t anyone standing there as a means of comparison.


Here is me working on cutting a piece off from the main trunk.


And another shot of me still working on that same cut.


When you only have an 46cm (18 inch) bar on your chainsaw, cutting something that is 1m in diameter is quite the challenge. It also takes forever as the saw works extra hard and you go through a lot of fuel. It also didn’t help that a lot of the pieces were still frozen to the ground and no amount of sledge hammering or levering was gonna move them. We did managed to cut up a full truck load of logs, but I was getting low on gas by that point. We decided to let things thaw out a bit more and come back another time.

This neighbour we were helping also had an old barn on his property. It’s really at the point where it is about to fall down, but Kat and I were looking at it and thinking, “gee look at all those building materials we can reclaim and reuse.”


There used to be another portion of the barn on this side, but it had already fallen down and was carted away. You can see how it tore off the sheet metal on the roof when it went.


Interestingly, part of the foundation under the barn gave way some time ago and there happened to be a car under there at the time. It’s just a bit smucked now.


As fun as it would be to pull materials from the barn, it would probably be safer to just knock it down first and then salvage from the pile of debris. Maybe we’ll wish for a really strong wind 😉


2 thoughts on “Helping out”

  1. That was one big tree! No wonder you’re so skinny! ; )
    That barn must’ve been pretty sweet back in the day. Please don’t enter it again though, it’s not at all safe. Better to have it dismantled and then forage the forest for food, as they say. Be safe, be well.
    Love, Mums

    1. We didn’t actually go inside it, just stood beside it to take the pictures. There was also a huge raven’s nest up in the rafters at the top. One more thing to deter any causal passersby from venturing inside.

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