Sunday, March 28, 2010

Clearing the Land

When we first moved into The Ponderosa Lodge, the lodge was surrounded by pine trees. This created a beautiful canopy when driving up to the lodge, but it kept the lodge dark and cool. We were so crowded that we couldn't see cars pull in the driveway and didn't know people were here until they walked up to the door. We, basically, had a 20 minute window of sunlight in the front window when the sun was peaking between the trees. We had to do some clearing.

Pines trees in the front and back in 2005.

We first cut down 7 of the pine trees in the front and 5 large trees in the back. Then we cleared some locust across the driveway. This opened up the lodge and we realized we had a view of the holler below.

Last week, we got 12 more trees removed to increase our view of our fields and open the lodge up for more sunshine. We plan to add solar panels to the roof for hot water and need a little more sunshine.

View from our bedroom window.

Tom attaches a cable to direct the tree's fall.

Tom is a good friend and a great person to know. He has his own wood mill and milled all of the trees we have cut down here into lumber. All of the improvements we have made to the lodge have utilized lumber from our property. We trade lumber with Tom in return for his help in cutting down the trees. He takes the large trunks, while the tops and most of the branches get cut into firewood for my friend Scott. The smallest branches are then hauled to the back edge of our fields for brush piles for wildlife.


  1. Wow, this sounds like a big project. This arrangement that you have with your friend is awesome! I'm sure this job would have cost a pretty penny if done by a stranger. I wish more people bartered these days.

  2. When we first wanted to cut down some trees, we called a tree service company. He wanted $700.00 to cut 6 pine trees and haul the trunks away for trash. We thought it sounded like a waste to throw them away, not to mention it was a lot of money. I'm so thankful to have found Tom. It's great to see the wood being used for lumber. I also like that we have used some of the lumber from our trees when remodeling the lodge.