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Author Topic: Corduroy roads  (Read 1318 times)

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Offline wisconsitom

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Corduroy roads
« on: February 12, 2022, 10:57:23 AM »
How about an old solution to an old problem-waterlogged sections of trails.  Seems like the ultimate simpleton job, something even I can manage.  Any dos or don'ts?

Figure I'll make trails ten feet wide, maybe wider.  Will be using larch.

If nothing else, want to shore up squishy trail back to where our old camp in the cedars is.  Then maybe some day try to get 1952 Spartan "Travel Home" we drug back in there back in the day back out again.  Maybe sell back to the lady with the hobo camp up the road where I originally bought it!  She collects trailers and I think, tenants.😆

So yeah, corduroy road thru cedar swamp-any tips?

I'm a life-long learner.  That's why I made sure to start out real dumb!

Offline Jeff

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2022, 11:09:00 AM »
Just call me the midget doctor.
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Ezekiel 22:30

Offline wisconsitom

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2022, 01:15:46 PM »
Thank you sir.   Nice vid.  Some of those bugs look familiar!

Yeah we cross little flows here and there.  Nice treatment on that.  I've got some old municipal water main pipe I channel with.

Heck there's even an old rock pile around here if I can find it!
I'm a life-long learner.  That's why I made sure to start out real dumb!

Offline Joe Hillmann

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2022, 03:32:47 PM »
I have just heard of this method and haven't tried it so I can't vouch for it but I see no reason it wouldn't work for a quick temporary road.

Lay down chain link fence in the soft spots.  The fence will support normal vehicles for at least a few trips across. 

Lay weed block fabric on the ground and then chain link on top of the fabric.  Supposedly this will support a loaded dump truck through a swamp for over a dozen trips.

Like I said, I have no first hand experience but it sounds like it should work and is cheap and quick.  I intend to keep my eye open this summer for free or cheap chain link fence to try it myself.

Offline Jeff

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2022, 04:42:08 PM »
Been a long time since ive seen cheap or free chainlink fencing in this area. Anything metal is dear.
Just call me the midget doctor.
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Ezekiel 22:30

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2022, 04:56:52 PM »
I corduroy trails all the time to expand my harvest trails. I bring firewood out on a Polaris Ranger 570.  What I usually use is black spruce that I either cut from the trail or off the sides from thinning. I often cut firewood off the but ends up to where I have a stick 3-4" on the big end. So the top portion of the tree is used after it's limbed. I've got 1000's of black spruce for poles that are not huge trees yet. I use 8'-9' long rails.
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2020 Polaris Ranger 570 to forward firewood, Husqvarna 555 XT Pro, Stihl FS560 clearing saw and continuously thinning my ground, on the side. Grow them trees. (((o)))

Offline Firewoodjoe

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2022, 07:57:12 PM »
Use it all the time logging. Works very well. Dads garage drive way is 17 years old aspen! Wouldnt even know its still there. Old ways are still good ways.


Offline barbender

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2022, 01:25:30 AM »
Corduroy is of integral to the cut to length logging method. The mat of branches and tops that the harvester lays down minimizes impact for both it and especially the forwarder. Like Firewoodjoe, we'll often haul extra slash to bridge a soft area. 

Lots of roads around here have a corduroy base. Sometimes it works OK, sometimes not. It always works well for bridging the soft stuff. The problem is with the freeze thaw cycles, the corduroy will often migrate up and in the worst cases, begin poking through the surface. I've seen this on improved, gravelled county roads around here. Where you really don't want it is under asphalt. Back in my paving days, I saw jobs we paved that had a completely solid base with 12" of class 5 gravel on it, completely fall apart in a couple of years because unbeknownst to us there was corduroy further down and the stuff comes to life in the spring. There was even a remote stretch of state highway we did, you could see where the old corduroy road was underneath as it meandered beneath the asphalt highway because the asphalt was all busted up above the corduroy. Anyways, I'm all for it in the woods but I'd never put it in my driveway or anything like that.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2022, 04:29:27 AM »
I never bury mine, that way no surprises and easily maintained. I've seen old 100 year old corduroy on woods roads, red cedar, not buried. Those old timers in the remote part of the country had no time for burying, it was many times laid down in front of them as they were moving wood out by sled or line/chain behind a dozer. The first guy I know around here that yarded wood for dad, pulled a sled with a dozer with 4 foot plupwood on board. This was the 60's. I've never found any corduroy, because most of the cutting was in winter and the ground here is mostly firm even if wet, hard bottom. I only know of one soft bottomless spot on my land. I had a D8 dozer all over my ground for site prep and we never lost her. ;D
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1 Thessalonians 5:21

2020 Polaris Ranger 570 to forward firewood, Husqvarna 555 XT Pro, Stihl FS560 clearing saw and continuously thinning my ground, on the side. Grow them trees. (((o)))

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2022, 05:16:25 AM »
The Old Guys did that on my land. There were fields up in what is now woods. They had to get across the bog, this is a type that when we drove the tractor across it, the land would rise in front and then come back up behind us. I thought that was pretty cool at about 10 years old.
But any ways, that corduroy was always coming up. We would take out a piece a year. With the bog being so soft it would sink into the ground.
But all gone now under 3 feet of rock.  ;)   That layer holds up a loaded forwarder too.  ;D
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Offline Southside

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2022, 09:10:08 AM »
The LaCroix road between Clayton Lake, Maine and Lac Frontier, Quebec was built that way over a century ago and you can still see some of the cedar posts today. 
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Offline wisconsitom

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2022, 09:37:29 AM »
There were still corduroy remnants coming up thru pavement on some country roads in this area back in the 70s.  

I'm only going to do logs, no dirt or stone.  Lumpy bumpy if on tractor, some of these might be more foot paths for a while.  I'd have to haul far too much material for what I've got in mind.

In reality, half of my motivation is just to have a use for pre-commercial thinning material.  Then too, in the first area I want to do, it'll help if we do end up skidding that old Spartan trailer out of the bush.  Better running on that then sinking down into the bulrushes.
I'm a life-long learner.  That's why I made sure to start out real dumb!

Offline petefrom bearswamp

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2022, 09:48:08 AM »
Fun to watch Jeff
after watching you and Tammy work,  would definitely hire you two by the hour.
I have found old corduroy work on our Adk property.
No fill on top.
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Offline 47sawdust

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2022, 06:42:12 PM »
I use sawmill slabs on the wet spots here.
Mick
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Offline Al_Smith

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2022, 05:30:10 AM »
I live about 4-5 miles south of an area in NW Ohio known as the great black swamp .At one time the area had the largest white oak trees ever grown on earth .Very few of the giants are still standing .At any rate over the course of a couple hundred years it was all drained with deep drainage ditches and enough tile to go to the moon .Every so often they dig up buried oak logs once used for sections of roads centuries ago .Some are buried 6 to 8 feet deep.
That organically rich soil  is some of the most productive in the country but my word after the spring thaw it gets mud like the swamps of Louisiana . 

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2022, 06:07:05 AM »
Grand Lake, which is not all lake, but a vast flood plain beginning at the Portobello,  in south central NB along the Saint John River. Probably nowhere higher than 10 feet above sea level. Come spring time down there, 10% of the province is afloat. The Dutch immigrants gave up farming down there, and if anyone knows how to control water, it's the Dutch. :D
No amount of belief makes something a fact. James Randi

1 Thessalonians 5:21

2020 Polaris Ranger 570 to forward firewood, Husqvarna 555 XT Pro, Stihl FS560 clearing saw and continuously thinning my ground, on the side. Grow them trees. (((o)))

Offline Blue Noser

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2022, 06:51:38 PM »
Grand Lake, which is not all lake, but a vast flood plain beginning at the Portobello,  in south central NB along the Saint John River. Probably nowhere higher than 10 feet above sea level. Come spring time down there, 10% of the province is afloat. The Dutch immigrants gave up farming down there, and if anyone knows how to control water, it's the Dutch. :D
It's always a surprise when the mighty St. John floods.

Offline Southside

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Re: Corduroy roads
« Reply #17 on: September 06, 2022, 11:06:33 PM »
Not really, rather common occurrence in Ft Fairfield.  I still remember when the bridge to Allagash went out.  
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