The Split Team

Steel toe boots and a helmet? This is my Valentines Day present? It turned out to be one of the best!

My husband, Jim, and I live on 18 wooded acres in the foothills of the Cumberland Plateau. We partially heat with wood that we harvest from our own property. It’s a three stage process which involves cutting the wood, splitting it, and then stacking it in the woodshed.

The Cutting


Jim uses a Stihl chainsaw


We almost never have to cut a live tree. One or more oaks or hickories come down from natural causes every year. The first step in harvesting the wood is to cut the trees into manageable lengths that can be loaded in the trailer pulled behind our all-terrain vehicle and brought up to the wide expanse of concrete in front of the woodshed. Jim uses a chainsaw to cut the trees. My part is to hold smaller pieces of wood still while he cuts them and to load them into the trailer. This is where the helmet with ear protectors comes into the picture. The helmet protects me from any branches that might fall unexpectedly. Chainsaws are pretty darn loud, especially when working in close proximity for long periods of time so the helmet also has ear protectors.


Almost on the wagon


The Splitting


The splitter in action


Most of the wood we harvest is quite large and has to be split. In the early days of our marriage Jim did the splitting with a wedge and a maul

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