Logging Tongass National Forest

JoeyP

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Apr 20, 2020
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Anyone following the news on Tongass National Forest? Sounds like they're going to open it up for logging. Not sure what that means for hunting.
 

Marbles

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May 16, 2020
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Anchorage, AK
Select log? They are going to clear cut the remaining old growth. Logging camps add little to SE AK's economy from what I have seen. They have the potential to take a lot from it though. Many of the older locals I know opposed logging 40 to 50 years ago and continue to do so. Though I should add that they were/are commercial fisherman.

Beyond that, the Tongass is a rain forest. Unlike places in the lower 48 it does not need to be managed to prevent annual wild fires. Plus, how the logging is done makes fire risk higher, not lower.

This Meat Eater article reflects much of my own feelings.

 

Marbles

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You can get clear cuts logging the very plentiful second growth along existing roads. The stuff that is now so thick you can't see your own feet while moving through it. Then you get 20 to 30 years down the road when there is nothing to forage for animals due to the thick confer growth. The animals don't like that.

Unfortunately, unlike the Buffalo, the old growth will not return in a couple generations, not when the trees being cut are over 900 years old.
 

WV Mountaineer

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There are likely few markets for the timber that comes from areas that are so thick you can’t even see your feet. Nor would it be logistical to log it from a monetary stand point.


You want dead eco systems? Look no farther then old growth.
 

MTSasquatch

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Jul 21, 2019
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My first Sitka blacktail was standing in the middle of a clearcut on POW. Tongass forest. 1988.
I’m a big fan of clear cuts. Critters are a big fan as well.
A buddy of mine once killed an elk standing on a closed road. Does that mean we should turn hundreds of thousands of forested acres into 2-track roads? Just trying to figure out a good place to find elk.
 

Oregon

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A buddy of mine once killed an elk standing on a closed road. Does that mean we should turn hundreds of thousands of forested acres into 2-track roads? Just trying to figure out a good place to find elk.

Well. Not sure.

One thing I can assure you of is that I’ve killed tons of elk and black tails in clearcuts.
Literally tons.
We’re way past the stage of coincidence.

So......if you personally killed TONS of critters in 2 tracks. I’m all for it!
 

adventure907

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Jan 6, 2014
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AK
Log the Tongass, kill the fish. After spending a few years guiding in the Tongass it is clear to me that logging the old growth is bad for the animals and bad for the fish. It is a true wilderness marvel that will be ruined with continued road building and logging, just my two pennies.
 

Rokbar

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May 8, 2020
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WNC
Dang, wish they would log here in WNC more instead of discussing it. Send the loggers this way to improve the habitat better around here!
 

KurtR

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Sep 11, 2015
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South Dakota
A buddy of mine once killed an elk standing on a closed road. Does that mean we should turn hundreds of thousands of forested acres into 2-track roads? Just trying to figure out a good place to find elk.
If a road is closed is it really a road or a walking trail with 2 lanes?
 

MTSasquatch

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If a road is closed is it really a road or a walking trail with 2 lanes?
This is the conversation I want to have! It sure is nice to have that double path, that way you can bs with your hunting buddy without rubber-necking the whole time!
 

ILoveBusch

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Feb 2, 2019
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FWIW I hail (generally not proudly) from Minnesota where logging is/was a large business in the north. These timber stands matured rather quickly compared to other areas. Most of the areas we hunted were "slashings" or clear cut areas. That's where almost all of our deer and grouse were. In that area, logging played a large (and positive) role in habitat management for game species. There was always more old timber than there was a market, so we had a great mosaic of habitat types. Not saying I know a darn thing about forestry in AK, cuz I don't, I'm just saying that good management with logging as an option, can be beneficial in certain areas.
 

Marbles

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Anchorage, AK
FWIW I hail (generally not proudly) from Minnesota where logging is/was a large business in the north. These timber stands matured rather quickly compared to other areas. Most of the areas we hunted were "slashings" or clear cut areas. That's where almost all of our deer and grouse were. In that area, logging played a large (and positive) role in habitat management for game species. There was always more old timber than there was a market, so we had a great mosaic of habitat types. Not saying I know a darn thing about forestry in AK, cuz I don't, I'm just saying that good management with logging as an option, can be beneficial in certain areas.

Like most places in the lower 48, Minnesota has very little old growth forest (and concequently very little old timber) as most of the old growth was cut over 100 years ago. The small pockets that are left were largely spared due to happenstance and are now protected.
 

JoeB

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Oct 21, 2020
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logging produces new lush growth that is very attractive to the critters as feed and for bedding as it gets taller. I'm guessing its not too much unlike a burn area that has lush regrowth. Here in Indiana whitetails pile into logged areas for ten plus years after a clear cut. also provides nesting for turkeys and other birds. lots of benefits.
 

BuzzH

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May 27, 2017
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Wyoming
Always funny to listen to guys compare Indiana, Montana, etc. to the Tongass and the old growth found there.

Clearcuts in some places and in some forest types are a good thing for wildlife, forest succession, etc.

But, as has been duly noted, comparing hardwood forests in Indiana, or a clear-cut in Idaho, Wyoming, and other Interior West States to the Tongass is ridiculous.

Also, old growth in SE Alaska, or anywhere else for that matter, is not a "dead ecosystem" ...not even close.
 

gesasky

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Feb 28, 2018
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Georgia
I know this is subjective but I have spent time on Prince of Wales Island and all the locals I spoke to were all for more logging. The economy took a huge hit there when logging all but ceased. The Tongass is massive and the timber industry is a huge part of the economy there. The logging is not all encompassing and still provides new diverse habitat for wildlife. Timber is a renewable resource and logging puts food on peoples tables and roofs over their heads. And when you have a good stable job, you then have more disposable income to spend on outdoor activities and conservation.
 
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