Birchwood Camp suffered heavy tree loss from the windstorm that came through our area on September 4. Wind gust were reported at 80-100 mph and the storm lasted through the night. The camp was out of power for three days following the storm.
We estimate that we lost about 50 trees just in the heart of camp– so anywhere there are buildings. We also had 14 trees down across the driveway into camp. The are 21 trees down on the trail around the lake and trees were blocking every path out to our challenge course. There is simply no way for use to tell the actual number of trees down on all of our 160 acres; there are too many to count.
We were incredibly fortunate as far as damages to buildings- almost all the trees missed buildings, often just barely. There were a couple trees leaning on the lodge but they were held up by the root ball and were removed without damage. A tree landed on the corner of Trapper cabin, damaging one of the logs. And a tree clipped the porch overhang on cabin 3, so some repair on the edge of the roof will be needed. Another tree took out part of the back stop on the ball field, so that will need to be rebuilt; however, that is a simple, non essential structure. We feel very blessed that there was not more damage and that all the onsite staff were unharmed.
We anticipate that full clean up from this windstorm will take several months. We have made great progress already with the help of numerous volunteers, but we hope to get the heart of camp clear before the snow falls. Over 300 volunteer hours have been given towards the clean up effort so far, but there is still much work to be done. We need volunteers to fall trees, cut up down trees, and move wood and brush. If you want to help, please call or email the camp office- volunteer days and times are flexible. Office: 907-688-2734 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are on of our guest groups, please know that camp is fully accessible and large efforts towards clean up have been made. We ask you to pardon our “mess” while we continue this clean up effort. There is still some tree debris around and piles of wood in odd places. But we are working to make things as normal as possible for our guests and campers.