Yesterday my friends and I went into the San Juan National Forest and cut sapling aspens for making walking sticks. The Forest Service provides a permit for a certain amount of saplings of a certain size over a month’s time. We cut about half our quota yesterday.
The day was beautiful as we headed onto a county road and drove into the mountains. Unfortunately I seem to forget to take my camera for some of these expeditions, so I don’t have photos of the scenery.
After we’d rested from the trip we sat out in the evening and stripped the bark off the saplings. If you don’t do it right away, it gets much harder later! And some of the ones we cut already had some difficult bark to remove. My hands got pretty sore and stained.
The stripped “sticks” need to dry for several months before they can be sanded, stained, and varnished. I’m hoping to make some beaded handles for my creations, and maybe add some feathers from the ones I’ve collected since I’ve been here.