Click here for a map of the cut blocks where dead or dying pine were removed in the summer of 2011.
All the of the areas of Telemark that were harvested in 2011 were replanted with a mix of tree species in the summer of 2012 by the Telemark Racing, Biathlon and Cadet teams. We don’t expect a need for any major logging in the foreseeable future.
During the summer of 2011 there has been substantial logging carried out by Heartland Economics LP on behalf of the Westbank First Nation.
As you know, Telemark has suffered over the years from a significant pine beetle infestation. Telemark’s mandate under our management agreement with the province is to ensure that all trees that are endangering the trails are removed. Over the last six years or so we have attempted to harvest beetle infested trees close to the trails. All in all this has not been very successful mainly because of the fact that this selective logging is not very efficient. Besides that this logging did not address the beetle infested trees further from the trails.
Gorman Brothers had the logging rights at Telemark for many years, but as of 2004 the Telemark area has become part of the Westbank First Nation Community Forest. The WFN therefore has all the rights for logging in our area. Late last year we started discussions with Grant Thompson of Heartland Economics LP, WFNs forestry department, to decide how to deal with the pine beetle infestation. It was agreed that all major pine blocks should be logged now, for the health of the forest. Waiting much longer would increase the hazard of forest fires. During the early spring we had a number of meetings with Grant Thompson and Richard MacKenzie to lay out the areas to be logged. It was agreed to address the following three areas:
- Telemark trail close to Rabbit and the lit area of Rabbit
- The area between the Connector, Carol Trail and Fern Creek
- An area alongside the Crystal Rim trail
The logging was supervised by Richard MacKenzie. In the process of this logging Grant helped Telemark with various trail improvement projects at our requests and we appreciate his assistance. The visual impact of the logging was minimized as much as possible. The Douglas-fir and deciduous trees were left standing whenever feasible. In the spring of 2012 Heartland is anticipating planting approximately 60,000 seedlings in the Telemark blocks. Planting will include pine, spruce and Douglas-fir seedlings. Grant Thompson has offered to allow members of the racing and biathlon teams to do some of this work as a fund raiser.
So, as said, you will see major changes at Telemark, but we felt this work needed to be done now for the reasons mentioned above.