As we all know nowadays, costs are high on about everything. But ever so often someone finds a way to “get-around” some of these expenses. Such was the case for Bill Reeks when high winds broke, uprooted and damaged many trees on his forty-eight acres. Knowing many board feet of nice lumber lay within these logs if only there was an “affordable way” to make these many logs into good, accurate lumber, he decided to build himself a band sawmill out of the “left-overs” from many years on construction jobs.
An additional farm operation should allow you to work at it when your schedule allows, but not demand your attention when you don’t have time to spare. To the extent possible, it should make use of your skills and equipment. You are probably already an expert at operating and maintaining gas engines, belt drives, hydraulics, conveyors and winches. Your tractor, flatbed trailer, and 4×4 pickup truck no doubt, do multiple tasks around the farm. Additional equipment should be able to pay for itself in a year or two, even if it is only used three months out of the year.
In the morning we awoke to a three quarters of a mile long swath of old growth mixed conifer and aspen trees, uprooted and strewn everywhere we looked. We hadn’t moved here to become loggers, but it looked like God had other plans! We had chosen to become caretakers of this beautiful place because of the peace and quiet, the clean air, the myriad of birds and wildlife! Thus, we were presented with a challenge: how to clean up this blowdown in a clean, sustainable way.