Saturday, April 21, 2018

Down a logging road

I can't resist an unmapped road winding off into the bush.

Logging road. A sign near the highway warns of active logging Monday to Friday. Nobody there on Sunday afternoon; perfect for an explore.

A couple of kilometres in, I found logging slash, and a view of distant mountain tops.

I grew up around logging slash, hardly noticing it. In recent years, with the vast increase in machine logging, stripping much of our rain forest of its ancient cover, I've come to detest the thought of it. But here, the old familiarity returned, and I was able to see the beauty even in this ravaged forest, so busy now re-establishing itself.

Among the trees, I can always hear their quiet conversations. Here, on a Sunday afternoon, with the whispering evergreens far across the graveyard of their old friends, it was so silent that the buzzing of a fly echoed down the road. The air was spicy, smelling of cut wood and browning ferns. A few tiny white butterflies danced around the crumbling stumps. Huckleberry shrubs, still young, sprout from the crevices at the tops of nurse stumps, and around their feet, the first green shoots of next season's covering crops, fireweed and ferns, elderberry and blackberry, dot the ground.

I turned over fragrant slabs of wood and strips of bark, each one decorated with the tunnels and shredded fibers left by burrowing grubs.

A beetle's drawing of Don Quixote's nag, Rocinante?

Salal is evergreen and hardy, resisting even the tread of men and machines. With last year's dead ferns. The roots are still there, healthy and ready to sprout, now that the ice is gone.

Logging is still going on, farther into the mountains. Here, recovery begins.

1 comment:

  1. Logging roads do give us access to areas we could never reach without them. It's a double edged sword. We also get good use out of their barge ramps and docks here on the lake. - Margy


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