Friday, March 26, 2010

A burl in the hand is worth two in the bush

Skiing down the West trail, I spotted a burl on a dead spruce tree. I have been looking for burls since forever, so this is treasure indeed. I am not quite sure why burls form; have to do some research. It appears to be a constriction in the growth process. Anyway, I marked the spot (in the woods, all spots look the same. This is why people get lost) and next day stuffed a saw in a backpack, went in and cut the burl from the tree, which, rest assured, was deader than the proverbial doornail. I then stuffed it in the backpack and skied home, where it now resides:

It is about 25cm across; not big as burls go. Many people use them as is for decorative outdoor posts. I don't know what to do with Burly above. Some poeple make bowls out of them. But I cannot decide. I am keeping a lookout for another, of course. There is real treasure in these boreal woods, if you can only get in there! In the summer, there is brush, more brush and perhaps bears lurking. In winter you can ski in the woods. The brush is buried, the bears are asleep, and there are no bugs.

It is hard to saw when you are on skis, by the way. There is nothing level, so you tend to drift away from the cut. You can't stand the way you want because 180 cm of ski is in the way. If you get off the skis, you go through half a meter of snow. Snowshoes are better for cutting, but my burl was about 4 Km from the house and snowshoes are clumsy and tiring.

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