I have lived in the Mojave desert for most of my life. All I know of wood
is that you buy firewood from another state, popsicle sticks are made of it,
and one can make houses out of it.
Last week, my 5'2" wife and I, new Husky chainsaw in hand, felled a 60"
diameter base tree at our Utah cabin.
CY: Wow, that's huge.
We were overjoyed at the thought of having fresh firewood for free. We cut
it up into short pieces.
Then we tried to burn it.
How long does pinyon have to sit before it dries out enough to burn?
CY: I can't comment on your trees, but in the humid NYS, it takes a year,
and two years is better. Since you're in a desert, wood should dry sooner.
How long does most wood have to dry before it is good firewood?
Does it have to be covered from snow and rain?
CY: will season faster if you cover it. Many folks throw a tarp over it, and
elave the sides of the pile open for ventilation.
We can get "fuelwood" permits to go out in National Forest areas, and
harvest wood. There is pinyon, quakies, and pine, but pine only at the
CY: Leave the pine behind. The creosote will coat the inside of your chimney
and risk chimney fires.
Just looking at things, I thought it would be easiest to just go up and
harvest the dead wood, as it is already dried out. Also, in quite a few
places, there are 12-16" diameter round sections that people either didn't
want or didn't load up. They need to be split, but they are already sawn.
Why didn't people take these? They appear to be solid wood, no rot.
CY: You'd have to ask them.
Give me some pointers about the gathering and care of firewood. I don't
really want to get into splitting other than small diameter pieces.
CY: Gasoline power splitter makes life a lot easier. Some folks in NYS use
packign skids to keep the wood off the ground. Some folks use a "shelter"
roof, to keep the rain off. Others use tarps. Keep the wood away from your
house or garage walls, in case there are insects in the wood. Don't want
them to migrate to the house walls.
Talk to your neighbors. Talk to the folks at the hardware store. Ask a lot
of questions. If you can get the ecological "low snipe damage" chain, please
do so. Snipes are growing extinct.