Storm stricken 150-year-old white pine reclaimed
CROSSLAKE--The 2016 summer storms claimed a 110-foot white pine on the Pine River shore and within the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Crosslake Campground.
CROSSLAKE-The 2016 summer storms claimed a 110-foot white pine on the Pine River shore and within the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Crosslake Campground.
When the towering monarch, an old-growth giant pine, fell it came to rest on County Highway 66 in Crosslake and everything except 40 feet had to be removed to clear the bridge. That left the bottom 40 feet and the stump. Curious about how old the tree might be, workers counted the rings and came up with a tree that was 154 years old with the stump measuring 51 inches across. At 40 feet, the pine is still 29 inches wide.
The wood is clear throughout without any rot. The roots just happened to be sunk into the wet river bank and the strong wind just pushed it over.
The maintenance company, which does the work around the Crosslake Campground, is Northern Tree and Landscape company of Pillager. It's owned by Ted Sullivan, who is now in his 37th year taking care of the Crosslake and the Gull Lake units.
After all the years at the park, Sullivan felt it was time to give something back to the campground. Sullivan had an idea to remove the last 40 feet of the tree and have it milled into park benches for the campground. Also, he is going to have Amish friends build a 12-foot by 15-foot kiosk from the lumber for the park.
On Thursday, the work began by cutting up the 40 feet in four 8-foot lengths. Working and tugging on the first log, Sullivan and his crew managed to finally get one piece to the park office. He was able to get two logs in his large dump truck to be taken to the mill. Sullivan estimates there are 700- to 800-board feet of good white pine lumber in the four pieces.
Corrine Hodapp, supervisory park ranger at Crosslake, was excited about Sullivan's plans to continue the legacy of the big pine and turn it into something people could enjoy even though the magnificent tree is now gone.