Topographical Tree Study and Giving Kudos #1: "Waundering at Topographics in Forests of Woods" --by RusticWoodArt

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Blog entry by frank posted 11-05-2007 02:47 PM 1305 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Topographical Tree Study and Giving Kudos series Part 2: "Trees of the Prophetic" --by RusticWoodArt »

Waundering at Topographic’s in Forests of Woods

Note: The following places, names and locations have or may have been changed to protect the rights and continued life, of the individuals involved, along with their need to coexist within the forests of wooden glens they call home….having said that, I continue.

If one was to come and visit me in the fall and winter months, one might be surprised at all the books I surround myself with, on woodlands and forest in the New England area. But even greater of a surprise, might be the many maps and studies on topographic’s that I do, along with the many sketches and outlays of land. One thing I learned years ago….and that was many, many years, dating back even to my days as before teenager years….was a love for the woods. The forest of woods, have called me and drawn me to their mysteries and latter revelations, just as latter in life, one can often be seduced by a women….and yes, here I speak from a male perspective, as the seducing is for sure a two way street.

I have over the years also learned that if one wants to understand wood, then one needs to go to the source….their source, their dwellings and so I have learned to spend time in the forest of woods. Now one may wonder why I make such a distinction about ‘forest of woods’ and so if I may, let me explain. There are in this world many different forests and so some may live in ‘forest of woods’ while others may live in ‘forest of asphalt and concrete’....and what about ‘forest of rural towns’ and ‘forest of metropolitan cities’ ? Many are the ‘forests’ we surround ourslves in and with, and they all share a common good to the benefit of our planet.

To find older trees, the ‘ancient ones’ or ‘old growth’ of the land, I have also learned that in studying trees, one needs to also study and understand the topographic’s of the forest of woods. From my studies of topographical maps, I can learn and see places that it would be impossible, to have logged or that would be often bypassed in favor of more easier to get at trees. Studying the topographic’s of the forest I am also going into, gives me an idea of where to go to find older growth trees and then also, gives me an idea along with my compass….of how to get back out.

Yesterday was one of those days, when I decided to go deep within and look for old growth, plus spend some time in the woods by myself. I did load up on pictures yesterday and so I will turn this blog story into a two part story, hope-fully to be continued tomorrow. As I said above when I started this article, the where’s and names will remain silent, since I was successful in finding some old growth of pine and those pictures will be forthcoming in the next story. When we talk of old growth in New England, I am not talking of the same old growth that folks on the west coast can partake of, where they to go into the forest of redwoods….and yes, the old growth of the west and into parts of California are some of the oldest….if not the oldest that has yet been found. New England at one time, was logged about 70%-80% bare for farmland and then also earlier in our early days, when we were ruled by the king of England, our tall pines supplied the masts for the tall ships of his navy. So what we have left is what was missed, not talked about or what has come back….

Enjoy your walk today if you should decide to come along and be sure to bring water and hiking boots.

And so we will start out here at the base of some granite outcroppings….

....while walking closer, we now get a better feel of what it means to be set in granite…. we pass by on the left of us, some pebbles of chips off the old block….

....and one more. I find such beauty in these, that I am all-ways amazed of the harmony of the land….

....makes one wonder about the creature, that may possess this living space…. take the high road and I’ll take the low road and we’ll see who gets to the top first….

....what one can learn from a tree about being adjustable….

....and then there is the story, this one teaches in ‘tenacity’....

....WOW, a wide-screen, movie-screen out here….think I’ll sit down and watch a movie on wood….

....climbing we meet this one….

....different angle, same character….

....this is beauty….

....well here we are on top….

....zooming down….

....we now come back up….

....standing back up, I now look up and out….and so I give thanks for life….

.....and so once again we will make camp here on top and continue on tomorrow…..and yes, there is more to come….

Thank you.

” smart, work safe, and live, to work the wood….”

-- --frank, NH,

8 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35120 posts in 4394 days

#1 posted 11-05-2007 03:18 PM

Thanks Frank A great Forest of Woods.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View Mark's profile


316 posts in 4127 days

#2 posted 11-05-2007 05:27 PM

Thanks for the walkabout. You certainly live in a beautiful part of the country. I am also amazed when I see trees growing out of solid rock. They are a true statement of tenacity as you mentioned. We are a lucky lot in being able to appreciate nature’s beauty and wonders.


-- Mark

View Fingersleft's profile


71 posts in 3890 days

#3 posted 11-05-2007 06:35 PM

Thank you Frank, for the wonderful photos and more importantly for you insight and perspective. I am fortunate to live in a secluded and splendid area in the Colorado Rockies. Thanks for reminding me to take a moment to observe and contemplate.

-- Bob

View RobS's profile


1334 posts in 4300 days

#4 posted 11-05-2007 08:49 PM

Thanks Frank and now I have to wonder what came first.. Frank’s knowledge of searching for old growth based on topographical properties or Frank’s learning of such a tool upon reading Preston’s “The Wild Trees”?

I know from previous discussions that you have read the book just curious as to the timing of you methods?

Great hike, thanks again for sharing the experience.

-- Rob (A) Waxahachie,TX

View frank's profile


1492 posts in 4200 days

#5 posted 11-06-2007 03:21 AM

Hello Rob;
—-kind of like the chicken or the egg….LOL!

I was thinking about this story this afternoon, while out working in the woods and the thought occured to me as I played the lines back in my mind….that I had left out some parts of information here as I was busily writing this morning.

When I was talking about surrounding myself with books and topographical maps of New England, well what also should have been inserted there, is this also grew out of my love for canoing. Long ago, I started planning river trips and studying rivers and hidden lakes off the well traveled path and out into the unknowns. During the fall and then into winter, I will scour the libraries and used bookstores for books on canoing. Actually I’m into my second year now of studying rivers into the Adirondacks region of northern NY and before that I have been studying the forests of that area for about five years now. I have not yet made it into the Adirondacks by canoe or kayak, but yes I have made hiking trips into the area over this period of time.

My wife and I have canoed VT, NH and Maine and then this past winter we also bought kayaks….so we are still learning the art of kayaking. If I knew years ago what I know now about kayaks, I would have been kayaking many years ago. Still canoing is where I first started using the topographic maps….but then even that is open to debate, since canoing is just a way to get me out into the wild and then I will beach the canoe and take off on my own. We have two canoes at the moment, one is fiberglass which I use by myself and then also with my wife….the great point about fiberglass is, if you get into trouble in some rapids and tear the fiberglass up, well some well applied duct tape will get you home and then it’s just a matter of cloth and resin. And yes, the fibeglass canoe has multiple ‘battle scars’ on it’s body. The other canoe is an Old Town long haul made with the composites and so the composites have a memory and after a good bashing, this one will re-turn to it’s original shape….by long haul, what I’m saying is that since it will hold 1100-1200 pounds, we can pack it up and stay out for some time.

So which came first, studying topographics or Preston’s book….well the topographics came first along with the maps….and yes I will also add here a plug for those that are published by DeLorme, since these will often give me some map of the roads, off track out there. Actually, come to think of it….and here we go off again, I carry in my truck also topographic maps of again, VT, NH, and Maine. Why, well as I travel around I am also addicted to side dirt roads and logging roads, so these come in handy all the time. And no, I could not tell you which makes me turn off the main road more often….looking for a river or lake….or looking for some old growth….since both of these draw me and so they go hand in hand. Yes I also might as well put a plug in for the White Mountains AMC books which also offer excellent topograhics.

So what happened before i started studying topigraphics of forest and woods, well back then I depended a lot on my compass, gut feeling, listening to the trees and also asking folks who lived in out of way places….all of which I still do along with the topographics of now.

By the way….the book by Preston is a good source of reading also, but nothing compares to just closing the books and getting out there into the ‘source of wood’....the forests.

Here’s a short video and article, I saved about two weeks ago from the NY Times that deals with the Adirondacks and some land that has been bought up there….time will tell how much of this gets opened to the general public. One of the greatest limitations placed on the land to hikers and kayakers there, is that so much of this land is owned by the private sector. Logging Is Part of a Plan to Preserve Adirondacks and this is well worth the time spent watching….

Hope this helps to answer your question and if there are more questions….ask away.

—-also thank you; Karson, Mark and Fingersleft for all your comments….

Thank you.

-- --frank, NH,

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 3999 days

#6 posted 11-06-2007 05:10 PM

I bet the granite views the old growth trees as some fly by night annoyance. “wink”

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View RobS's profile


1334 posts in 4300 days

#7 posted 11-06-2007 06:22 PM

Great video and article Frank. I agree with your premise of just closing the books and getting out… In fact I have a hat that says just that, a forest-mountain sceene with just two words, “get out”...

Thanks for the blog within the blog, keep ‘em coming.

-- Rob (A) Waxahachie,TX

View frank's profile


1492 posts in 4200 days

#8 posted 11-07-2007 04:31 PM

—-hello Miles; now I must thank you for that wonder-full comment there….your comment just gave me a moment of in-sight….thanks

—-hi Rob; glad you enjoyed the video and article….thanks


-- --frank, NH,

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