Yesterday I had a visit from a man and his chainsaw. He had come to cut down and turn into logs and firewood a couple of my old dead trees.

I did not have to track him down or organize the work as that had all been done by my neighbour. he had actually come to cut down some of my neighbours trees and he had spotted whilst grazing his cattle on my grass that I also had a couple of large and very dead trees.

This arrangement worked out fine for everyone. Anything thicker than a medium branch is of no use to me as it would not fit in my stove. So I could give away the logs cut from the trunk and just keep the branches for myself. In this way I had the trees cut and cleared away for nothing and next doors acquired some additional timber.

The first of these trees was in the open and so fairly easy to bring down and cut to size. The second though was on the edge of my wood and wrapped in vines and lianas. That to considerably more work to coax away from the surrounding greenery. However once it was down a large whole had been opened in the canopy which will allow more light into the wood and allow the plants that were once trapped in shade on the ground to grow and regenerate the wood.

From there we headed on up my neighbours land to his small forest growing around the base of a sheer rocky outcrop upon which the vultures next. The trees there are allowed to grow wild and natural and as it had been several years since the dead wood had been thinned out there were quite a number to clear out.

For the rest of the afternoon the chainsaw cut away at old dead trees ten or twenty metres in height which were scattered throughout the forest. These were then carved into logs about half a metre in length where they fell.

I set about helping to bring all this timber out of the wood. Carrying logs down narrow forest paths and out into the open where they could be collected together in great piles. The driest of the branches were almost weightless but a few of the sections of trunk were far heavier. I know what a 50kg bag of cement feels like and suspect that a couple of the logs weighed more than that. Those rather than lifting I had to tip end over end along the paths and out into the grasslands.

It took several hours of constant sound from the chainsaw and three of us hunting the fallen timber to collect everything together in the open.

Once finally done there were four large piles of cut logs. Each at the end of a different forest path. All neatly stacked ready to be brought back to the house by ox cart.

It was good to get a bit of hard work done. By the time I had finished I was covered in dirt with scratches all down my arms and fingers full of thorns. Very pleased with the afternoons work.

It was not just trees that I saw in the forest. Any animals that had been around made themselves scarce but I did discover a couple of armadillo burrows. Their occupants would stay hidden underground until night fall. Also there were large colourful flowers and trees loaded with wild figs.

With the pathways now trampled clearer and breaks made in the canopy it will be easier for me to investigate what else is hiding away up there the next time I take a walk that way.

For now all that remains is to collect up the suitable branches from my fallen two fallen trees. Once done I will have more than enough firewood collected together to last for the next year.