Last winter I learned to turn bowls on a lathe. When we planned our summer travel to Colorado, I knew I wanted to bring back some aspen wood for use this year. After research on-line, I learned I should look for standing aspen that had been dead for at least a year.
The next step was to find out if I needed a permit from the Forest Service to gather 2 or 3 4-foot logs of dead wood. Yes. So I paid my $20 for a permit to gather fire wood. That allowed me to gather up to 2 cords of wood. I certainly don't need that much. But realizing I had paid $16 for a piece of ambrosia maple that measured about 10" by 6" by 4", the $20 wasn't too bad.
I asked the ranger in the Rio Grande Forest Service office in Creede for directions to a good location to find my wood. He showed me an area that was no more than 10 miles from our campground, so Friday we headed out with gloves, a hand saw and a small reciprocating saw.
After inserting the blade in the small saw, John used it to start his cut into the aspen.
Then came the hard work, sawing two standing trunks that had been dead for quite some time and another that has already been cut down.
John did most of the work. I just served as gopher, carrying things to and from the truck. I carried 2 of the logs he cut. He carried the other. To top it off, we even found a large chunk of aspen that had been cut and used as a chair around the campfire. It was way to large for John to cut with our old hand saw, but it will be a good size for turning.
Success! Here are 3 of the aspen logs in our truck.
When we returned to our RV, I attached the Forest Service permit to one of the logs.
I look forward to working with wood when we return to Arizona for the winter.