Forest mystery?

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chumley
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Forest mystery?

Post by chumley » Feb 19 2009 9:43 am

I've seen this on the aerial photos before, and I've even checked it out from the ground (where the pattern is either non-existant, or very difficult to follow). But I have absolutely no idea about the when, what, why, how, etc.? My best guess is logging or something related, but even that doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. This is just north of Stoneman Lake, and its predominately Ponderosa, but the ground here is very rocky, and there's a whole lot of other trees too... especially oak and pinyon.

Besides aliens and crop circles ... anybody care to enlighten me?

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Jim_H
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by Jim_H » Feb 19 2009 9:54 am

I think that may have something to do with an experiment to improve range, or water yields. It reminds me of photos of Agro-forestry plantations in Brazil and Argentina. It looks like that was how they pushed trees, and then probably moved them to a central area to burn piles. The lines were to create areas of trees and pure grass to maximize beef and timber production. If that was the case then it almost certainly was an experiment from the 1980s, and it probably went nowhere since we have such low growth rates in AZ, and a dry rocky site will be less so.
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chumley
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by chumley » Feb 19 2009 10:15 am

I have encountered some impressive herds of cattle in the area. I assume something like that would be a private/public cooperative endeavor? Probably paid for by the lessee (cattle owner), but approved by the Forest Service? I can't imagine the time it would take to get something like that approved. Getting approval to cut down a single dead tree on the forest can take 5 years of study. (possible exaggeration ;) )
Last edited by chumley on Feb 19 2009 10:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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BobP
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by BobP » Feb 19 2009 10:16 am

This may explain it!! :) Have you seen Horton in this area?
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JimmyLyding
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by JimmyLyding » Feb 19 2009 10:45 am

Bob, is your dog chewing on wood? Only a lab....

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BobP
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by BobP » Feb 19 2009 10:50 am

Horton was my "hiking partner" one day in CO. My dog Louie is a lab mix and will make an appearance here one of these days.
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by PaleoRob » Feb 19 2009 4:06 pm

Hmm, interesting! Perhaps not quite analagous, but on the Manti-LaSal NF in Utah (specifically the Price RD) there are areas of mountain and hill sides that have trenches bulldozed perpendicular to the slope. Why? Because folks back at the early part of the 20th century thought that instead of dealing with topo maps, they would bulldoze the elevation lines into the landscape! It would totally mystify me if I hadn't been told about it. Perhaps some similar hair-brained scheme was at work here? Though I think jhodlof's explanation sounds like a good one.
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Jim_H
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by Jim_H » Feb 19 2009 8:21 pm

PageRob wrote:Hmm, interesting! Perhaps not quite analagous, but on the Manti-LaSal NF in Utah (specifically the Price RD) there are areas of mountain and hill sides that have trenches bulldozed perpendicular to the slope. Why? Because folks back at the early part of the 20th century thought that instead of dealing with topo maps, they would bulldoze the elevation lines into the landscape! It would totally mystify me if I hadn't been told about it. Perhaps some similar hair-brained scheme was at work here? Though I think jhodlof's explanation sounds like a good one.
I don't know about that area, but in the 1980s there were places in the northern Rockies where they bulldozed terraces on the mountain sides.
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Sredfield
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by Sredfield » Feb 19 2009 10:03 pm

Range "improvement" would be my guess. Email the forest supervisor and ask?
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Re: Forest mystery?

Post by TwoWeims » Feb 21 2009 6:19 pm

This is a top secret military base called area 50. It was abandoned back in the 1940s because the markings were just too confusing for the aliens to figure out where to land. One craft circled for so long trying to figure it out that it ran out of fuel and crashed in New Mexico. :sl:

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