bike bushcraft

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tramponabike
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby tramponabike » 27 Aug 2011, 12:59pm

To suggest that chopping and cutting of wood by bushcrafters is in any way akin to sustainable management and harvesting as practised by bodgers is to misunderstand woodland management. For a start, bodgers will only revisit an appropriate wood every 11-15 years. They don't just turn up at any woodland at random. The woods they work have been specifically managed for regular harvesting, sometimes over hundreds of years. Their activities are also only appropriate for one type of woodland management, copicing, and are not appropriate for all woods.

Woodlands are managed with different ends in mind and require different treatment. They could be managed for timber production as in the bodgers coppice, or they can be intended to produce tall individual trunks. They can be managed for recreation, game production or conservation. All requiring different treatments. The idea that unmanaged and uninformed interference from members of the public with more cutting power than sense "will help" is dangerous. How would you know if those brambles you clear are not serving a purpose you have no understanding of?

The suggestion that our remaining isolated woodland is sufficiently self sustaining to withstand such treatment is also a fallacy. While our original blanket coverage of forest has been lost over thousands of years, of the ancient woodland that survived until the 30s 50 per cent of that has since been lost. Ancient woodland cannot be replaced. We are now one of the least wooded areas of Europe. Only 12% in comparison to 45%. Of that 12% only approx 40% is native woodland. Amateur interference in woodland management, encouraged by macho weekend fantasies of survival and living of the land, will only reduce it further.

Pity as no one likes a roaring camp fire more than me, but we really shouldn't allow our pleasures to blind us to facts.

Nice pic greybeard... Keilder... thats a plantation, different thing all together. You can burn that blot on the landscape down anytime. :shock:
Last edited by tramponabike on 27 Aug 2011, 2:19pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Si
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby Si » 27 Aug 2011, 2:13pm

Lawrie9 wrote:Real bushcraft has no impact on the natural environment and can be very beneficial such as the way the old bodgers did in coppicing and thinning woodland for making chair legs and cotton reels.


..and you're saying that you can't see the contradiction in that statement then?

Lawrie9 wrote:As long as you don't leave litter and do something to enhance the envoronment such as clearing brambles from tree saplings your presence will help.


Help who or what? Doesn't help the 'natural' brambles much does it?


Sorry Lawrie but nice and romantic as they are, your views on what is and how to treat the natural environment do seem a little muddled.

LANDSURFER74

Re: bike bushcraft

Postby LANDSURFER74 » 27 Aug 2011, 2:23pm

Sorry Si, i'm with Lawrie9... this is England, there is no "natural enviroment" it dissapeared hundreds of years ago. The enviroment in England and a lot of Scotland is man made; from forests to fields, to open hillside all have been carved out by farming and man.. We live in a man made version of 'nature' .

tramponabike
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby tramponabike » 27 Aug 2011, 2:59pm

LANDSURFER74 wrote:there is no "natural enviroment" it dissapeared hundreds of years ago. The enviroment in England and a lot of Scotland is man made; from forests to fields, to open hillside all have been carved out by farming and man.. We live in a man made version of 'nature' .


I think man "affected" rather than man made. Even our most destructive efforts are transient in the long run. It has been suggested that a mere 250 years of the absence of man would reduce Canary Wharf to an ivy covered mound in a vast swamp of mangroves. (The World Without Us. A Weisman). Our environment was quite literally carved out by ice, water and wind not by man. It's the biology inhabiting this geology that we have impacted most. The difference now is that we are beginning to understand it. We can make conscious decisions in an attempt to reduce our impact and conserve biological diversity.

Extending your logic though ... because of the damage we have already done, are you suggesting that it's not worth trying to conserve what vestiges of our "natural environment" still remain?

It would seem to me that your stance should strengthen the case for conservation of what little we still have rather than justify disregarding and discarding it.

mark a.
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby mark a. » 27 Aug 2011, 3:24pm

Most of the bushcraft I've done and I've read about uses dead wood, which is less of a problem. (I am aware of the importance of decaying wood in natural forests.) Living wood can be used for withies and whatnot, but they're only thin twigs and branches, not chopping huge chunks off trees.

You have to be careful when talking about conserving the remaining forests by leaving them alone. This is generally true (except for the experts managing them if needed), but you run the risk of the saying that everyone should stay out of the forests. Then no-one will have a clue about them.

I would prefer it if more people did bushcraft with the risk of a few idiots getting it wrong than keeping everyone out of the woods.

LANDSURFER74

Re: bike bushcraft

Postby LANDSURFER74 » 27 Aug 2011, 3:25pm

CONSERVATION DOES NOT MEAN HAVING TO STAY STILL, I WOULD LIKE TO SEE A RETURN TO WIDER COPPICING AND POLLARDING OF OUR WOODS, proper support for hill farming, less access to the hils and mountains ... yes less.
Not by prohibition but by a stop on access roads, "forest parks", making it harder to get to the wild places, such as they are, by car or coach.
The Cairngorms has been ruined by 'access for all' ; what was a testing wilderness 20 years ago is now a mountain theme park!!
Even many of the bothies have been removed as their now so close to roads or formal paths they have been made redundant.
And as for the rail line at Cairngorm and the ski lift at Corrie Lees at the Ben / Fort Bill.... :x :x

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Si
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby Si » 27 Aug 2011, 3:26pm

LANDSURFER74 wrote:Sorry Si, i'm with Lawrie9... this is England, there is no "natural enviroment" it dissapeared hundreds of years ago. The enviroment in England and a lot of Scotland is man made; from forests to fields, to open hillside all have been carved out by farming and man.. We live in a man made version of 'nature' .


Depends on what you call "natural environment".... If wild red deer, a natural inhabitant species of these islands, damaged the edge of a 'natural' forest, would you say that it was still natural? So, why when people, a natural inhabitant species of these islands, change the landscape around them, do we say that it is no longer natural? At what point did people become 'unnatural'?

But that's by-the-by, because I didn't actually say that England was a natural environment, I just pointed out that Lawrie's view of 'natural environment' was somewhat contradictory and confused. Afraid that you are teaching your granny to suck eggs as far as environmental change in the past is concerned: if you want to discus the subject I should warn you that I can bore for England* on it :wink:

*Well, yes, I hear your reply and it is true, I can indeed bore people on most any subject, but on this particular one I've actually done research work, had papers published, etc.

mark a.
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby mark a. » 27 Aug 2011, 3:27pm

I too would like to see more coppicing and pollarding.

tramponabike
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby tramponabike » 27 Aug 2011, 6:57pm

mark a. wrote:You have to be careful when talking about conserving the remaining forests by leaving them alone. This is generally true (except for the experts managing them if needed), but you run the risk of the saying that everyone should stay out of the forests. Then no-one will have a clue about them.

I would prefer it if more people did bushcraft with the risk of a few idiots getting it wrong than keeping everyone out of the woods.


Fine... I would just ask that they leave their saws, axes and matches at home.

reohn2
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby reohn2 » 27 Aug 2011, 7:30pm

tramponabike wrote:To suggest that chopping and cutting of wood by bushcrafters is in any way akin to sustainable management and harvesting as practised by bodgers is to misunderstand woodland management. For a start, bodgers will only revisit an appropriate wood every 11-15 years. They don't just turn up at any woodland at random. The woods they work have been specifically managed for regular harvesting, sometimes over hundreds of years. Their activities are also only appropriate for one type of woodland management, copicing, and are not appropriate for all woods.

Woodlands are managed with different ends in mind and require different treatment. They could be managed for timber production as in the bodgers coppice, or they can be intended to produce tall individual trunks. They can be managed for recreation, game production or conservation. All requiring different treatments. The idea that unmanaged and uninformed interference from members of the public with more cutting power than sense "will help" is dangerous. How would you know if those brambles you clear are not serving a purpose you have no understanding of?

The suggestion that our remaining isolated woodland is sufficiently self sustaining to withstand such treatment is also a fallacy. While our original blanket coverage of forest has been lost over thousands of years, of the ancient woodland that survived until the 30s 50 per cent of that has since been lost. Ancient woodland cannot be replaced. We are now one of the least wooded areas of Europe. Only 12% in comparison to 45%. Of that 12% only approx 40% is native woodland. Amateur interference in woodland management, encouraged by macho weekend fantasies of survival and living of the land, will only reduce it further.

Pity as no one likes a roaring camp fire more than me, but we really shouldn't allow our pleasures to blind us to facts.

Nice pic greybeard... Keilder... thats a plantation, different thing all together. You can burn that blot on the landscape down anytime. :shock:

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Lawrie9
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby Lawrie9 » 27 Aug 2011, 8:52pm

I think at this time of year you would get eaten alive by midges trying to try to do bushcraft. With the bodgers they harvested the wood on an 8 yearly cycle and if a wood is managed well it can produce a lot of timber, mushrooms edible, plants etc very sustainably. But iif thousands of people suddendly started to flee from the cities into the wild undergrowth it wouldn't be long before there where no trees, water was poluted, soil became exhausted and so on as we have seen in places like Easter Island. It is confusing as to what exactly bushcraft is as opposed to sustainable living in the woods and countryside. I think some people might also confuse bushcrafts with being in the SAS and and the survivalist scene.
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ukbushman
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby ukbushman » 28 Aug 2011, 7:31pm

from what has been posted here on this thread in my view, most of you who have posted have an idealised view of bike bushcraft & of bushcraft in general. I'm of the opinion that some, if not all, could benefit from some form bushcraft course that could benefit you & your cycle touring exploits in the future, & my give you a better understand of the environment that you ride through, but this is just my view & opinion.

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Greybeard
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby Greybeard » 28 Aug 2011, 7:35pm

ukbushman wrote: I'm of the opinion that some, if not all, could benefit from some form bushcraft course that could benefit you & your cycle touring exploits in the future.


Unless it leads to an even better tasting mug of tea, I doubt it :wink:

Steve

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ukbushman
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby ukbushman » 28 Aug 2011, 7:37pm

there's a lot more to bushcraft then what has already been posted.
UKB

Edwards
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Re: bike bushcraft

Postby Edwards » 28 Aug 2011, 9:26pm

ukbushman wrote:there's a lot more to bushcraft then what has already been posted.

ukbushman wrote:from what has been posted here on this thread in my view, most of you who have posted have an idealised view of bike bushcraft & of bushcraft in general. I'm of the opinion that some, if not all, could benefit from some form bushcraft course that could benefit you & your cycle touring exploits in the future, & my give you a better understand of the environment that you ride through, but this is just my view & opinion.


Would you please explain how we could be enlightened and pass on some of your knowledge here. Preferably without going on a course.
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