Pristine Beauty in the Midst of Cataclysmic Destruction—The Ice Storm of a Century!

On the nights of Friday and Saturday nights of February 12 and 13, Wilsonville and surrounding areas to the south, east and west of us experienced the most devastating ice storm in 60 years. Sixty years is how long our family has been caring for shrubs and trees in this area, and in that time we have never seen such a devastating ice storm.

In all likelihood, this ice storm was the mother of all such weather events in probably the last 100 years, if not 150 years. How do we know this? It is a simple deduction to make. When you see numerous 150 to 250 year old Oregon white oak trees with their trunks snapped in half, or with main trunk-sized limbs broken off like toothpicks, you realize that these, the sturdiest of any tree in our region, have never seen anything like this for a long time if ever.

In 35 years of business in Wilsonville, I have never seen this kind of destruction to trees from any kind of a storm. We spent nearly two weeks just chipping up downed tree limbs in one neighborhood alone! And our new brush chipper can process tree limbs as fast as two men can throw them into it! There was hardly a property that was not touched adversely by this epic ice storm.

Nevertheless, in the midst of the this cataclysmic devastation, there was a beauty of almost equal proportions though for a brief moment and which then quickly faded away when the temperatures began to rise and the ice melted leaving a dystopian landscape in its wake.

Imagine this type of destruction to thousands of trees in every neighborhood in all directions!
This was my own side yard.
This was the thickness of the ice after the first night of freezing rain. After night number two, the ice was even thicker.
Most people in our region where without power for a few days up to almost two weeks due to falling trees.
The ice that had fallen off the trees covered the ground to a depth of about four inches.
The ice weighted the trees down, so that it was impossible to drive on most of the streets. Many tree limbs had broken and many trees were uprooted blocking roads everywhere.

Yet, inspire of the destruction, there was a gloriously beautiful face to this ice event, as well, as the following pictures document.

This photos is from a client’s property SE of Wilsonville where the ice was even thicker on the trees.

Here is one of our tree service dump trucks—our old ’52 GMC. It was covered with about an inch of ice.

This was Good News Tree Service’s answer to the ice problem—a new brush chipper that is twice the size of our other chipper. On Monday morning after the ice storm, I was at the Vermeer dealer in Portland and bought their first chipper after the storm. This was the first of probably 40 some chippers that they have sold since then to be used in this region’s storm damage cleanup.

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