Exchange Club Park is a privately owned, but publicly available park in Hillsborough, NC. According to the park's website,
Those 16 acres enclose one of the best sites I have found in my immediate area for measuring tall trees. The park is watched over by towering sycamore and tulip poplar trees. I measured the 10 most prominent trees (all over 110 feet tall), but there are at least another 10 tulip poplars above 100 feet tall that line the creek bordering the park.Exchange Club Park, located at 331 Exchange Club Lane just outside downtown Hillsborough, is privately owned and operated. The park consists of 16 acres and includes one baseball field that is used frequently for scheduled Hillsborough Youth Athletic Association games. The park also has two playgrounds and open space areas, as well as 16 picnic tables and picnic shelters.
As you can see from the pictures below, the trees in the park are at an ideal density to allow them to compete vertically for sunlight but not crowd each others' crowns. The tall, symmetrical crowns and the uncluttered bases are visible from numerous points in the park making this site a perfect place for honing my tree measuring skills.
Here are the measurements for the top 10 trees in the park. Please excuse the strange tree descriptors. You'll notice that I reported two height calculations for a few of the trees. These represent the measurements I was most confident in from opposite sides of the trees. I was tempted to only report the highest value (or average them together), but the ability to measure these trees from opposite sides was rather eye opening for me and brings up a couple of points for discussion.
1) a precision-obsessed NTSer could go insane trying to pin down the "exact" height of a tree from the ground.
2) as pointed out by many a seasoned measurer, what looks like the tallest twig from one vantage point is often not the true tallest point. The two measurements for the "garbage can tulip poplar" being a perfect example. Hence the need for multiple measurements whenever possible. In a forest setting or after leaf out multiple measurements might not be possible so I should report single (or challenging) measurements with that disclaimer.
3) Even when aiming at the same twig from different sides of the tree, you're not likely to get the exact same measurement. I suspect this could also be said for measuring the same tree from the same spot on different days. This discrepancy represents the "human error" in the sine method. Hopefully as I measure more trees my human error will go down!
I've heard all these points in Will, Ed, and Bob's various online presentations and written guides, but it was helpful to have a first hand reminder.
Enjoy the pictures: