We have hiked through this area of Trentino-Alto Adige Region for the last 15 years and we have never seem so many areas of total destruction in the forests located on the sides of the mountains.
Large tracts of forest of huge mature spruce and pines have toppled from the over-bearing weight of wet snow.
A few years ago we were told that the wide walking paths and ski slopes for skiers were the reason for a few trees to tossed down by strong winds, but now we know that this was just the beginning of Climate Change.
It is no exaggeration to say that in many places some 10% of mature trees have been destroyed by heavy snow – either they have fallen down or their tops have been torn off the tree. The destruction is so severe that most of the trees have been left in the forests for months. There is just not enough capacity to clean up the thousand of thick trunks that are piled up one against the other.
One big tree can uproot five to ten other trees that are in its path as its falls down.
In Finland, we seldom see such total destruction over such a wide area of forests. During the last three days we have marched over 70 kilometres on the sides of the mountains – there were very few areas where fallen trees lay dead on the moss of the forest.
We wondered why Finnish lumberjacks are not invited to clear away the timber for free and taken to northern saw mills for lumber! There can be no explanation for allowing prime quality wood to rot in the forest!