I first noticed this wind throw on the slopes of Mt. Kincaid a few years back. It’s a sizable patch of trees, and I think it will be interesting to watch over the coming years. I wonder if I will still be around by the time it’s grown back to the point where it is no longer noticeable.

Windthrow is one of the primary means by which forests in this region regenerate. I’ve heard mentioned the idea of wind forests – where expanses of forest are regularly (in the big scheme of things – but beyond human lifetime time scales) knocked down by large wind events. As a results the trees come back in thick and skinny, not unlike second growth after a clear cut. One thing that strikes me about the still-standing forest around the windthrow is just how skinny the trees look. It could be soil conditions there aren’t conducive to large tree growth, but I wonder if most of that forest has experienced an extensive windthrow event at some point in the past couple of hundred or so. I suppose one way to investigate might be to visit the slopes, investigate the understory and do some aging and mapping of the trees to see the distribution of tree ages spatially.

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