A few more details on that tree that fell down I mentioned in my journal entry from this morning…
We were in our front country camp at the Comfort House in Wawona. The NPS staff got to bunk in the house. We Corpies, including Moose, set up our tents around the house. The crew’s white canvas wall tents were all in front of the house. Moose’s REI backpacking tent was set up behind the house.
After work one day several of us were congregated at the tent I shared with Dave Amaral and Xem Ngyuen. I was laying on my cot across the back of the tent. Dave was sitting on his cot to my left. Xem was sitting on his cot on the other side of the tent. Wayne Venderleest and Mark Guthrie were there. Glenn Meyer was sitting on a log round in the tent doorway, where he could lean back out of the tent and spit his chew. We were all still in our uniforms, just relaxing after dinner and dishes.
This is the tent. This picture was taken after Xem left and I moved over to his cot. That’s my junk around the cot now.
We all heard the unmistakable creaking, groaning sound of a big tree going over. We had all fallen trees before, and we were very familiar with that sound. Everybody froze. Laying on my bunk, I saw the crowd in front of me and thought “I’m never gonna make it out of the tent.” Glenn leaned back and looked over at the sound. He said “It’s not coming this way,” and everybody relaxed.
The tree crashed to the ground and the ground shook. Everybody scrambled out of the tent to go see what had happened. Yes…I was the last one out of the tent.
The tree had fallen on the other side of the Comfort House. It was a huge pine. Moose stood there in here touron duds and sunglasses staring at the tree that had crashed to the ground and was laying embedded in the dirt about four feet away from her tent. As we all pored over the tree, Moose said “Y’know…I almost put my tent right there.”
The tree was infested with carpenter ants. They had eaten away at the tree so much that it weakened and just fell over. Mark said “Just imaging all of those little ants working on this tree for all of those years, and today it went over. I bet they’re all cheering ‘Yeah! We did it!’”