Cutting downed wood - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-04-2009, 01:26 PM   #1
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I talked to the Tongass National Forest (Alaska southeastern coast) about boondocking... for my upcoming trip. The good news is.

Question: can you camp anywhere you want?
Answer: heck yes!

Question: can you build campfires anywhere too?
Answer: Heck yes!

I was pretty happy to hear that but then she broke in and said, "you can't cut down trees for the fire though". I thought is was odd for her to say this since everyone knows you can't do that. But then she continued, " but you'll find lots of ground wood for camp fires".

Now that took me aback because I don't think there is a National Park, National Forest, or even a BLM acre that allows you to pick up ground wood. Not out west here at least. The dead wood is important to the biome so we just leave it to rot and bring our own wood.

Imagine making campfires with ground wood. I'll feel like a pioneer.

But maybe this is no big deal.. can you can do that where you live/camp?
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Old 04-04-2009, 01:38 PM   #2
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Every place I have camped in Sequoia National Forest, if its dead and on the ground it's firewood. Especially here in the dry west, getting that flammable material off the ground lessens the spread of ground fires getting into the trees. The only place I've been where no fire wood gatering is allowed is some state parks and backcountry above the timberline. Where I camp every year in the national forest we have never brang any wood, always a ready supply of free stuff dropped from the winter storms and winds. Now cutting down trees is not allowed but any tree dead on the ground can also be cut and used for home with a firewood permit from forest service as long as it's in a firewood posted area.
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Old 04-04-2009, 01:49 PM   #3
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Someplaces nay, someplaces yay, Florida seems to be a nay, but you can purchase it for 4 or 5 bucks a bundle, I think Va is that way as well.
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Old 04-04-2009, 01:52 PM   #4
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Hi: All... Not allowed to gather ground wood or cut down trees for fire wood here in our Provincial/ National Parks. That cuts off their source of income. 8 bucks a bag for Go Fer wood. Burns up so fast you have to Go Fer some more.
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie p.s. We are in a zone where we can't even move wood from our county due to Emerald Ash Borer
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Old 04-04-2009, 02:34 PM   #5
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Now cutting down trees is not allowed but any tree dead on the ground can also be cut and used for home [b]with a firewood permit from forest service as long as it's in a firewood posted area.
We are having a pest problem that is killing the Live Oaks in the Cleveland National Forest, and Eucalyptus elsewhere. Certain areas prohibit firewood from being imported in an effort to stop the pest infestation. As the dead trees are thinned, the wood is harvested for sale within the area.
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Old 04-04-2009, 02:41 PM   #6
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Good topic.

This will be interesting to watch over the next year as the budgets get slashed and the Parks, etc. can't pay to harvest or thin the downed wood. They may revert their policies to allow the campers to help them clear the downed wood.
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Old 04-04-2009, 03:05 PM   #7
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What Mike said. We usually bring some too, we have a "Wes" in our group!
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:07 PM   #8
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Every place I have camped in Sequoia National Forest, if its dead and on the ground it's firewood. Especially here in the dry west, getting that flammable material off the ground lessens the spread of ground fires getting into the trees. The only place I've been where no fire wood gatering is allowed is some state parks and backcountry above the timberline. Where I camp every year in the national forest we have never brang any wood, always a ready supply of free stuff dropped from the winter storms and winds. Now cutting down trees is not allowed but any tree dead on the ground can also be cut and used for home with a firewood permit from forest service as long as it's in a firewood posted area.
Mike, I had no idea (at first)
I have been to Sequoia hundreds of times and didn't know that (I lived in Clovis ).

The Grand Canyon NP doesn't allow dead wood collecting, Kiabab national forest doesn't, even Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument doesn't.

I called my neighbor who is a forest ranger and he said every park or forest does it different depending on lots of things but mostly it depends on the whim of management.
The Kaibab NF doesn't allow collecting downed wood because they are in a "let it burn" program right now.
But anyway I learned something... I thought all the west was the same.
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:45 PM   #9
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Last time I was there, Zion NP in Utah didn't allow it.

As the Ranger said, every place has it's own rules, based on need for duff, need to clear duff, prohibition of 'foreign' wood and management whims...
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Old 04-06-2009, 04:52 AM   #10
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In the White Mt National Forest of New Hampshire, Dead and Down is fine to take.
As far as importing wood, this is the next issue they are looking into.
They are trying to stop this by haveing the hosts sell the fire wood right in each camp but this is a bunch of "bull" as far I can tell because they are not cutting it localy.
I live about 30 miles from one such camp.
I buy and heat my house with wood in the winter and just so happend the trees I got came from the town this camp-ground is in.
When I arrived at the camp the Host and I had a lively discussion about bring wood in saying this will be a think of the past soon because of infestations.
I asked where did he get the wood he was selling ?
He said a guy down the road....I asked where did he get the logs to cut...Don't know.
So there you have it.
I can imagine a goverment agency policing, where wood is harvested and proccesed, much like the FDA in the future, with fancy labeling stateing where this all took place and it will cost you $25 for about 3 sticks...Kindling not included.
Gerry
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Old 04-06-2009, 04:50 PM   #11
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In the town where I was raised (as were my parents and grandparents), many of the boulevards were once lined with beautiful elms. Before the Dutch Elm disease hit, that is... Other folks, I'm sure, remember the devastation caused by the pine beetles laying waste to entire pine forests....
Now, states are fighting the spread of the Emerald Ash Borer, gypsy moths, and other pests. The ban on importing firewood into campgrounds comes from the hope of slowing or stopping diseases in the forests that we all enjoy when camping. The idea, simply, is to keep pests local, and not spread them around. Labeled, shrink-wrapped, kiln-dried firewood seems to be acceptable most places, as are construction "cutoffs" of kiln dried dimensional lumber.
I can appreciate your own "local knowledge" of the source of your campfire wood, but can the ranger? No. And it's just his job to try to protect his woods... Many, many cgs in state and national parks and forests carry restrictions in the fight against traveling pests.
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Old 04-06-2009, 05:26 PM   #12
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In some of the Provincial Parks in BC not only can you not use the wood on the ground - you cannot move it! We were at Ralph River BC provincial park and a very large branch had fallen into the middle of the camp spot. The park attendant was quite alarmed that we had moved it so we could set up our tents - we had to show her where it had landed and she made sure it positioned correctly off on the edge of the camp spot.

Saying that, Ralph River is well worth visiting if you want to camp among giant old growth spruce trees that lose their branches at night =)
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Old 04-06-2009, 05:36 PM   #13
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Hi: Booker B... I learned a couple of years ago not to park your trailer under an oak tree in the "Fall". Sounds like a 22 rifle going off in the night!!! Also don't camp near a goose flight path& cherry trees when they're ripe or 1/2 dead trees in a wind storm!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 04-07-2009, 04:12 AM   #14
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There's LOTS of wood on the ground up here available for campfires.
Problem is, esp. in Southeast and Southcoastal, it tends to be rather damp.

(Even during a fire ban, cooking and warming fires are allowed here , as it's sometimes a matter of survival....)
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