Will's Day in the Sun   Bob Leverett
  Nov 5, 2007

TOPIC: Will's Day in the Sun

== 1 of 1 ==
Date: Mon, Nov 5 2007 10:29 pm
From: dbhguru


I am reading a book by Richard Preston titled "The Wild Trees - A Story of Passion and Daring". It is the stories principally of of Steve Sillett, Michael Taylor, and Marie Antoine and secondarily several others, all of whom explore and/or climb the mighty redwoods. I highly recommend the book. Preston is an engaging writer as he interweaves the stories of these remarkable redwood hunters and researchers.

I can only hope that at some point Preston will tell the Will Blozan story, which is as remarkable as the stories of Sillett and Taylor. Will's ascendency into the canopy of the great eastern trees may not have the flare of the Silletts exploration of the redwood canopy, but it is every bit as important. Before Will climbed into the crowns of the Yonaguska and Tsali hemlocks, the noble hemlock species suffered the indignity of being considered a lesser tree than the white and loblolly pines. Its rightful position of being the largest volume evergreen conifer in the East was known to none that I am aware of. But, Will has changed our understanding of the correct order. Tsuga is #1. Loblolly is #2, and the white pine is #3.

Sometimes one has to read about the exploits of others more distant to put into perspective the role of those close by. I have come to take for granted that Will is going to climb into the canopy of the great eastern trees, measure, and discover truths about them that will keep the rest of us inspired. But surely, Will's climbing exploits and discoveries, if written about, would be seen by those more distant as truly remarkable. From afar, he would have the magnified impact. Given his many climbs, and of Tsuga Search, in particular, Will's position as the President of ENTS reinforces the value of ENTS as mover and shaker.

I may be off base, but I have a feeling that the golden era of ENTS has yet to come and Will is going to lead us into that era. The number of fronts on which we are working is indeed impressive. Even I hadn't fully absorbed the big picture until Ed Frank gave us a splendid briefing a in Oct 2006 on ENTS\accomplishments. Whether determining the volumes of the East's biggest trees, documenting forest site via Rucker indexing, collecting tree age data, or building site descriptions, ENTS is making lasting impressions. Well, usually - at least among people with imagination.

So as I return to reading 'The Wild Trees", I shall be reminded of just what an accomplished organization ENTS is and of the indispensible role in our success of one Will Blozan.


TOPIC: Will's Day in the Sun

== 1 of 4 ==
Date: Sun, Nov 11 2007 9:51 am
From: "Will Blozan"


Jeez Dude, give yourself some credit! YOU have been the inspiration for me
and the backbone ("fat back" ?) of ENTS for much of our organization's short
but productive life. Yes, I am a prolific tree climber and get ideas in my
head and run with them but we are all a team. The Tsuga Search would not be
a fraction of what it is without Jess Riddle, whom I have known since he was
a boy. You, Gary, BVP, Lee, Dale, Ed, John, and others are great sources of
ideas and help with all the projects we collectively are involved with. For
example, to me, my climbing in Mass is just providing a tool for your bag of
tricks, just as your work with spreadsheets and theories are a tool for me
to use down here. The results of our research and exploits have been a team
effort for the most part, with some folks pulling more weight or having more
time than others for whatever reason. Still, I don't feel inequality or
slackness from the team players.


== 2 of 4 ==
Date: Sun, Nov 11 2007 12:36 pm
From: dbhguru


Thanks. Yes, we are one hell of a team. And I don't mean to take anything away from Jess, Gary, BVP or any of the others. I just want to see your (and Jess's) story told, particularly as it relates to finding and confirming the world's tallest and largest eastern hemlocks. A sad aspect of this story is that the full measure of Tsuga canadensis, as the East's largest evergreen conifer, is known only now in our concentrated effort to document this wonderful, but rapidly disappearing, species. It is interesting to note that prior generations of scientists and naturalists never recognized the Great Smoky Mountains hemlocks for what they represented. I guess you see what you train yourself to see. The hemlocks of the Smokies, and especially Cattaloochee, are to all hemlocks as the Siberian tiger is to all tigers.

In our cooperative effort, I've been satisfied over the years to work out key mathematical processes and formulas that we have come to regard as our bread and butter techniques, and now that I am retired, Katty bar the door. I can't wait to get down to Meeman-Shelby and measure and model those fabulous cottonwoods that you and Jess discovered now that I have the TruPulse 360. I'm also looking very forward to getting to Black Mountain in the spring. I'll have a reworked PowerPoint presentation on Dendromorphometry ready.

With respect to your tree climbing visits to Massachusetts, I can't tell you how much I have appreciated your support. It takes a continuous effort on my part to insure that the resource managers within the Bureau of Forestry don't suddenly get dollar signs in their eyes when they look at the tall pines in MTSF. Left to itself, the Bureau has no vision for the Mohawk's outstanding trees other than as a timber resource, whether it be harvested now or later. But to the credit of some, when the uniqueness of Mohawk's pines are repeatedly pointed out, they seem to get it, or at least they recognize and fear the backlash that would come from an ill-conceived move to harvest in big tree/old tree regions of Mohawk.

So, I'll close by giving a salute to all of us. We're way cool dudes.