Oak Trees

The timber ranch I live on didn’t start out that way. It started as a sheep ranch because, a hundred and some years ago, the timber standing on it was worthless. Huge cedar trees and Douglas firs were cut down and turned into scrap wood. There was a road built here on the ranch; this road was a quarter mile long and made out of cedar planks six inches thick and eighteen inches wide, ten feet long, laid edge to edge to form a solid plank walk over which oxen and horses could drag heavy logs up a steep hill. All the trees were cut down and burned as useless—so that sheep could be grown. In 1999, we talked to an elderly woman who lived here on the ranch in 1914, and she said that back then there weren’t any tall trees growing anywhere on the ranch. She found it difficult to believe these big trees had all grown up while she was off living her life.

We have several “oak savannah” areas on the ranch, where the ground is made of blue clay slipping down the hills. Fir trees don’t grow well on it, but the white oak and tan oaks grow there. These specimens stand on the ridgeline of the hill behind our house.

oak tree

oak tree

I tweaked the colors and contrast a little to make it look more like it did when I took the picture. My camera tends to wash out some of the color saturation I experience when viewing these trees or flowers, so I added it back in with Photoshop.

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