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"The Crooked Pine Tree" (Franklin, MA)

I want to share this White Pine with which I have a long history. I am a novice when it comes to estimating tree measurements, but the size of this tree inspired me to do a little online research to see how it compares to other trees in the area - apparently it's pretty big for Eastern Mass. I named it when I was about 6 years old, and you can see why in the pictures:

The girth is ~8'6" - I measured it prior to reading about the 4.5' standard height on theses forums.
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Shot of the full tree, facing SE from ~105' away
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Shot of the full tree, facing SW from 150' away.
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At this location I estimated the tree's height using the tangent method. From here, I guessed I'd have about a 45 degree angle to the top of the tree, and I still have uncertainty with the angle of elevation. Using the spirit level app on my phone and the lock function, I found an angle of 47 deg. I verified this with a second tester. Incorporating the 150' distance and my 5'8" eye height, the estimated height is over 166'! Bear in mind, I'm fully aware that this may be a very high estimate - I'm quite a novice and certainly want to caution against anyone taking my amateur estimates too seriously - I'm only reporting the most conservative result I could produce using the only method I know.

Facing West, 100-200' away
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Here is a shot from 1988 - unfortunately I could not find any significantly older pictures of the full tree, but you can see 28 years of growth at the base. The uprooted trees were all over the woods in the wake of Hurricane Gloria at this time.
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The Crooked Pine Tree grows in the middle of a small high-ground patch surrounded by wetlands that flood multiple times annually. It dwarfs all the trees in its immediate vicinity. The ~5 acres of (remaining) woods around it are mostly wetlands or bordering areas and also border a marsh. There are a dozen or more other impressive trees of various species around the area, but the Crooked Pine Tree was always my favorite.
by CPT1984
Sun Feb 14, 2016 1:09 am
 
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Re: "The Crooked Pine Tree" (Franklin, MA)

Don, Thank you so much for that recommendation! I downloaded Clinometer, re-tested the same tree from the same location and got an angle of 33 deg (where spirit level gave me 47 deg). This produced a height of 103' which is pretty darn close to Doug's measurement of 101'. This will certainly make it easier to identify when a tree is and isn't within a certain noteworthy range
by CPT1984
Sun Feb 21, 2016 5:49 pm
 
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Re: "The Crooked Pine Tree" (Franklin, MA)

Doug was able to come measure the CPT this morning. It was great to meet him and his wife and talk trees, etc. Boy, my measurement was WAY off and I feel bad that he came out to measure a tree that is only ~101' tall! The culprit was of course my iphone's spirit level app which produced a reading of ~67 deg when placed parallel to where Doug's clinometer read ~48 (this is after calibrating on a level surface). I knew we wouldn't get 166, but I sure thought 130' was in play.

This experience gives me a new appreciation for how tall some of the trees in MA really are. At 101', this tree dominates over a forest of trees that aren't very small. I can't imagine adding 70' on top and will have to make a trip to MTSF to see those in person. Doug gave me a lot of pointers on measuring. I need to find a reliable way to measure angle of elevation. When that happens, I'll monitor the growth rate of the CPT, and hopefully see it reach 130' when I'm at retirement age. But also, I've found a new hobby to do while hiking and will be sure to post anything I find, especially in EMass.
by CPT1984
Sun Feb 21, 2016 3:08 pm
 
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