Thursday, March 29, 2007

Yosemite Tales: #2 story from my trip.

Here's the second best story from my five-day adventure in Yosemite National Park:

On Wednesday afternoon, I was sitting at my campsite preparing a healthy lunch of peanut butter and jelly. I even had some bread. As I'm completing this work of culinary genius, some forestry folks walk through and say they're going to be cutting down a couple of dead trees they had missed the week before.

Awesome. Cheap entertainment for my lunch.

This forestry person -- ranger? official? chainsaw handler? -- takes her chainsaw and begins to cut away at this huge tree. Only when I look closely do I agree with their assessment that yes, this tree is dead. Kinda like the ones right outside our youth warehouse.

She's working away, doing her thing, and after a number of minutes, she turns off the chainsaw and grabs an old-fashioned axe. She takes the backside of the axe and begins whacking away at the wedge she placed in the tree. One. Two. Three. She checks her angle. Four. Five. Six. The tree starts to sway. Seven. Crack. I watch as this huge tree begins to fall.

Have you ever heard the sound of a tree falling in the forest? Well, since I was there, I can tell you that it DOES make a noise when people are around. First was the crack of the actual tree. Then came the collision with the branches of the nearby trees as it fell. And finally came dual thuds, as the middle of the tree hit a large boulder, and the rest of the tree hit the open ground.

Awesome. Wish I had videotaped it. But then they might have suspected me of being some kind of ecoterrorist. I look the part, of course. Especially after going nearly three weeks without shavin' the beard.

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