A few weeks ago I went out back to cut down a large limb off a tall tree. After putting the ladder on the picnic table (neither were very stable) I decided it would be better if I had at least someone around to call 911 if something should happen. Below is a pic with the 16′ extension ladder ON TOP of the picnic table. The limb on the left is the target.
Last Monday a friend came over to help me. By the time we got the rope over the limb, (which was a feat in itself, since neither of us played softball or baseball, throwing the rope – with tape measure attached for weight – took… well… alot of tries) to make sure it fell where I wanted it to, and got the ladder on top of the picnic table and the extension cutter set up the thunder began to rumble in the distance. The ladder came down well, because it didn’t feel very safe, and a smaller step ladder replaced it. The cutting was slow, and the two of us took turns cutting that limb with the extension cutter (which doesn’t get as good of a grip when it is fully extended) when the rain began to fall. We got it cut about a third of the way through, and even with the two of us pulling at the rope tied to the limb to try and quicken the process, no luck. Of course, when I would be cutting my friend was using the chainsaw (which had a brand new chain on it) and cutting through the large piece still left from a year ago. Thin slices that I can easily carry. He got through about 4 of these slices – maybe two feet off that large piece.
The rain came and we sat with our coffee out on my front landing porch/slab (covered) and talked and enjoyed the mature beautiful multi-colored trees of my neighborhood. He said that the trees in the city aren’t as nice as those out where I lived. I smiled. All my friends and chosen family live in the city and I am a drive away – but I love the space, the land, and the trees. I love that parts of my back yard are very dense and attract deer, coyotes and other critters. It comes at a price – gas in the car to see these folks – which I do at least once a week. This is really my only car use during the week, with the exception of Wednesdays when I visit a 98-year-old friend who lives just 2 miles down the road.
Anyway… yesterday was beautiful, and my friend said he had time in the afternoon to come over and help get the limb down. Again, back and forth with one cutting and the other yanking on the rope, then switching. CRACK! and down it came. With the chain saw, cutting this piece into smaller pieces that will fit in my fireplace was pretty easy. No need for loppers to cut the smaller limbs – they just broke off (yep, this tree has been dead for a while) – and were set aside for starter for the fireplace. I now feel better going into the winter with a full rack of very dry wood, another rack of wood cut down a year ago, and a large piece still to cut up – but down and accessible if needed.