Does This Look Like a Logged Forest?

There is a state forest near my home that is absolutely beautiful to hike. You can walk for hours on seemingly endless interconnected trails. Some of them look like pristine natural lands. Others, however, are devastated by mass clear-cuts, with logs sprawling across one another, ugly stumps protruding, and nothing more over your head than thin saplings.

It is this imagery that makes it so important for people to understand sustainable forestry. The picture above is from a forest certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI). The foresters are actually walking an active logging trail.

The harvesting methods in this forest — New York’s famed Adirondacks — allow only 15% of any “stand” to be logged under strict conditions at any one time, and each stand can only be revisited every 20 years. The result is a forest that maintains a mix of old and young trees, with lush undergrowth and a vast biological diversity.

It’s a far different from the mental image people have of logged forests (many of which may have been logged for coal, which is entirely different for lumber or other forest products).

Does this picture look like a logged forest to you? If not, I encourage you to read up on sustainable forestry. I hope you’ll be glad you did.