Disaster then hope

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Wow, the last few days have yielded a series of severe ups and downs. Just finished the LHBA log home class for my second time and it was a great decision to go again. Thought I'd be a little bored listening to it all over again but Steve and Ellsworth did a great job as usual and I still learned a lot that I didn't catch in the first class.

The last conversation I had with my logger prior to flying out to Vegas was the logs would be cut and delivered before end of February, so everything was going as planned. Unfortunately, Mother Nature has different plans. Wisconsin has set a state record for abnormally high temperatures for the last week (above 60's) and it's screwed everything up. Ice isn't safe, Maple trees are running sap and the real disaster is the road weight limits are now in place and they're currently not projecting to lift them until April or May. That means everything stops. No concrete deliveries, no log trucks, etc... It also means all of the things that rely on heavy truck deliveries are delayed and schedules are thrown out the window. So my logger calls me this morning and informs me that due to the weight limits and how it's going to affect his business he can't get me logs until June unless something drastically changes. That would literally set us back a whole year and I would end up with summer cut logs instead of winter. Freezing temperatures aren't predicted to come back until the end of the week so it's highly doubtful the weight limits will come off anytime soon. We normally have a few weeks of weight limits at the end of March/early April but this is the first time anyone can remember them coming so early. My logger suggested I call around locally to see if anyone has any trees cut and waiting since the limits might mean they can't get them to their intended destinations and they might be looking to sell. Sometimes the county roads have different weight limits/allowances and they might even be able to find a route to get them to the land.

So the good news (hopefully) is I took his advice and called some of the local loggers I had talked to initially (who couldn't match his price). Sure enough, my closest logger is suffering the same problems as everyone else BUT due to that he now has large White Pines that were going to be cut and sold but the buyer backed out since he can't deliver soon enough. He's willing to give me the same price as my last logger was giving me for Red Pine, but we still might have to wait for delivery. Only reason we were going with Red Pine was I couldn't afford the White Pine prices, so it might actually be a blessing in disguise and now we can get our preferred trees at a great price ($2.50/ln ft). Plus, he said he won't have a problem getting us even larger diameter trees. If he has a local stand that will work, there's a slight possibility he might be able to wiggle in there on county roads not limited by the weight restrictions. The trees would definitely be a positive change and we can put up with not getting winter cut, but the added cons that the delay adds are numerous.

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