Manjimup

Ignoring the legacy of active management to create a “wilderness”

Introduction

The south-west forests of Western Australia have a rich history in timber utilisation, being one of the longest traditional industries in the state. Several timber towns that housed the timber workers and their families were established in the Darling Range close to the newly constructed Perth-Bunbury-Bridgetown railway line to utilise the timber from the jarrah forests.… Read more

A case study in folly #1 – bushfire management in karri country

After a recent tour of the south-west forests during our travels around Australia, I saw karri forests chocked with fuels and I wanted to write about fire management, or lack of. I struggled, however, to conjure the words that would convey the essence of the problem. I realised that no matter how much I tried, I didn’t have “the sap of karri trees running through my veins”.… Read more

Who was Jack Rate?

While I stayed at Walpole, I read about a local forester named John “Jack” Henry Rate. Jack was the first forester in the area and has a tree, lookout, road and a forest block named after him. I had never heard of him before, and I thought he should be more widely known with that many accolades, particularly in the forestry profession.… Read more

Cabins in the sky

Introduction

Early in my forestry career, I recall reading the fantastic story about building fire towers on top of karri trees in Western Australia. I got to see and climb one of them around the turn of last century when I had a brief visit to the south-west forests. I am in awe of the work involved at such dizzying heights unsupported by harnesses or scaffolding frames that are compulsory these days.… Read more