The clients, a couple with two young children, were concerned about this tree near their house. There was still some live growth at the top but many of the large limbs had died and fallen in stages, raising concerns related to the children playing in the yard. We agreed that this tree should come down.
Due to the proximity of this tree to the house, we put a rope in it to ensure it would not fall the wrong way. We connected our come-alongs to a sturdy tree just inside the woods line and pulled the rope tight.
When we cut the notch, it became clear how dead the tree was. It was hollow inside!
Taking the back-cut all the way through to drop this tree would have been dangerous because there was no wood in the middle of the trunk to serve as the “hinge.” So we played it safe by using wedges to give us leverage, keeping the tree pointing in the right direction. A few more whacks with the sledge hammer and this tree was on the ground, right where we wanted it!
Down on the ground and cut for firewood. This trunk was hollow more than 20 feet up, and we couldn’t tell where the live wood was. It was a good thing the clients decided to take this tree down before it fell on their house!
Short video of the tree coming down: