Yesterday saw the first snow of this winter fall in the woods!
OK, not much yet, but another inch fell today, and from the forecast it looks like there could be quite a bit more by next weekend.
Our friends Carl, Wendy, Holly and Tom came to the woods with us, though Tom got cold, so he headed home with Wendy after they'd collected some of last year's Hazel for kindling. It's a good job they did, as then the weather did this:
but that left it looking quite scenic:
I'm not sure these pheasants were too impressed though:
We actually got quite a bit of work done, despite the snow. We took the ropes this time, and Carl gave a lot of help with them, and also splitting logs. The biggest job of the day was a Hornbeam stool which had several tangled stems on it. I climbed into it to get the rope as high as possible on each stem:
Then after I'd put in the felling cuts, Carl pulled the rope to finish the job:
It was a pretty awkward stool to work, as most of the cuts were around shoulder height, which is not an ideal position to be using a chainsaw:
In between pulling trees over, there was a fire to keep going (or not)...
Holly took over as guest photographer, and got lots of interesting photos, such as Carl trying to figure out why the fire wasn't working...
and a nice snow picture:
Being Hornbeam, there was a lot of brash to clear up, and it's a tough wood to saw through and even tougher to split.
Thinner parts were striped to aid seasoning:
while the thicker bits were notched to make splitting easier:
Last of all were three intertwined stems, which had to be roped together and then felled in a group:
They were the most awkward of all, but we got them down and cleared up before the end of the day. There'll now be a lot more afternoon sunlight coming in - I'll get a photo when we're next there...