Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

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Larry Tucei
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Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by Larry Tucei » Sun Feb 15, 2015 8:56 pm

NTS- On my continuing documentation of Black Creek Wilderness area I returned to the same Branch that I had measured trees in a week ago. The dry Branch is about 50 yards wide and the area that I measured today was around 3-400 yards long.
Branch Photo
Branch Photo
This area is thick with underbrush and at time can be difficult to walk through. The Forest here is made up of mostly Tulip, Bay, Gum, mixed Oak and Pine in the branch. The surrounding area on both sides contains mostly Pine with mixed Oak. The Tulip trees here are off the charts to 114’ tall and most are in the 3’ CBH range. I estimated about 25 trees just in this area and they make up the largest amount of Tulip that I have seen anywhere in the state.
Tulip
Tulip
I took a photo of one that measured 114’ with a CBH- of 9’ 6”.
Bay meets Tulip
Bay meets Tulip
A Sweet Bay and Tulip were sharing the same place.The Bay here was also superlative some of the tallest that I have ever seen.
Sweet Bay
Sweet Bay
I measured a couple of Sweet Bay one to 90’, CBH- 6’ 9” Spread- 45’ x 40’ and another to 99’ with a CBH-6’ 7”, Spread- 45’ x 3’ a state record for me.
Both Bay Trees
Both Bay Trees
Sweet Bay 1
Sweet Bay 1
I then measured a tall Sweet Bay to 101’ CBH- 7’ 4’, Spread- 51’ x 36’ another state record. I crossed the Branch and just as I was about to get to the other side I found a little spring coming out of the ground which is rare. I got back into some Pines on the other side with some mixed Oak as I gained elevation.
Slash Pine 1
Slash Pine 1
I measured a nice Slash Pine to 96’ CBH- 6’ 6” a Coast height record for me.
Short Leaf Pine 2
Short Leaf Pine 2
Short Leaf Pine 1
Short Leaf Pine 1
Not far from the Slash I measured two Short Leaf Pine one to 99’ CBH- 6’ another to 122.5’ CBH- 7’ 6” a state height record for me.
Long Leaf, Slash, Short Leaf Cones
Long Leaf, Slash, Short Leaf Cones
I also measured a Long Leaf Pine to 90’ and I took a photo of the Pines Cones of the three species. I also measured a Post Oak to 82.5' a Coast record in the Pine grove. I then walked back down to the Branch but was north of where I had crossed. Just before I got back in the Branch I saw four nice Loblolly Pine trees one of which was really tall.
Loblolly Pine 1
Loblolly Pine 1
Loblolly Pine 1a
Loblolly Pine 1a
Loblolly 1b
Loblolly 1b
It blew me away when I measured it to 138’ CBH- 8’ 5” a new Coast height record beating my other Loblolly by 17’. This is the tallest Loblolly in all of southern Ms and only Noxubee NWR has any taller this proves that Loblolly was reaching heights to 140’ or more in the most southern Forests of Ms.
Slash Pine
Slash Pine
I next measured a really tall Slash not far from the Loblolly to 119’ CBH- 7’ 1” another Coast height record. I walked back up north and east to the ridge where the trail is located and followed it for another ¼ coming back off trail west this time into another bottom.
Gum Pond
Gum Pond
This one was quite different with some water- loaded with Black, Water Tupelo and Cypress. These all had heights in the 90’ range and I’ll come back and document some of them. The small ridges on both sides of the bottom are made up of mixed Oak, Beech, Magnolia and Pine. I crossed the bottom onto the other ridge and as I reached the other side of the ridge there was another bottom.
Spruce Pine
Spruce Pine
Spruce Pine 1a
Spruce Pine 1a
I came across the largest Spruce Pine that I've seen in all of southern Ms. it was awesome and measured to 124.5’ CBH- 9’ a real beauty and new Coastal record second only to one I measured in Bienville NF several years back.
Cypress
Cypress
Beaver Dam Creek
Beaver Dam Creek
Beaver Dam Creek 2
Beaver Dam Creek 2
All of these bottoms flow into Beaver Dam Creek which then flows into Black Creek. The Black Creek Wilderness Area is loaded with potential coastal height records and is very diverse. I have only explored a small portion more surprises are to come for sure. - Larry
Last edited by Larry Tucei on Mon Feb 23, 2015 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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dbhguru
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by dbhguru » Sun Feb 15, 2015 9:18 pm

Dang, Larry, you've turned into a one man measuring machine. That spruce pine is something. As it stands now, what's the Rucker Index for all Mississippi?

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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ElijahW
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by ElijahW » Sun Feb 15, 2015 9:32 pm

Larry,

Thanks for sharing these trips with us. I've never seen either type of bay tree nor slash pine, so I really enjoy reading your descriptions of the species and especially viewing your photos. You're doing excellent work, and I read all of your posts with interest. As I type this, the temperature outside here in Syracuse is -1, with a couple feet of snow on the ground and a touch of cool breeze. Just seeing pictures of snow-free ground and free-flowing water make me feel a little warmer inside.

Elijah
"There is nothing in the world to equal the forest as nature made it. The finest formal forest, the most magnificent artificially grown woods, cannot compare with the grandeur of primeval woodland." Bob Marshall, Recreational Limitations to Silviculture in the Adirondacks

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bbeduhn
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by bbeduhn » Mon Feb 16, 2015 9:31 am

Wow! I thought red bay was exclusively understory...and it's holding its own with tulips. Spruce pine and slash pine are huge! I think the Gulf Coast will trounce the East Coast, at least in the South. There isn't much in the way of large forest on the coast...unless you count Congaree, but it's not exactly on the coast.

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Larry Tucei
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by Larry Tucei » Mon Feb 16, 2015 7:23 pm

Bob- It's moving up fast I'll put some numbers together. Eli- Thanks I really enjoy the Black Creek trail a really nice Forest will some large second growth timber and not to far from my house. Brian- Well I'm calling it Coast De Soto NF is inland beginning at 10 miles from the Coast and runs north for 59 miles. De Soto has 518,587 acres, the area I've been reporting on is 42-44 miles inland. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Soto_National_Forest Larry

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Will Blozan
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by Will Blozan » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:00 am

Larry,

Those huge sweetbays could replace the current National Champion clump...

Will

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Larry Tucei
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by Larry Tucei » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:44 am

Will- Thanks I will nominte it to replace the double in Florida it is clearly two trunks measured together. Larry

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Jess Riddle
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by Jess Riddle » Sun Feb 22, 2015 6:38 pm

Larry,

It's really awesome that you're exploring some natural forest right on the Gulf Coast. That region has so many species that we have little or no information, and is also important for seeing how many widespread species vary in height across their ranges. The Gulf Coast of southern Louisiana and Mississippi also has the most rainfall of any part of the coastal plain. Combined with the ocean moderating temperatures, I suspect many southern species will reach their maximum size in that region. It's great to see some numbers coming out of the area.

The loblolly is impressively tall and important for seeing how the species varies across it's range. The sweatbays are also taller than any I've seen. I think the "red bay" is actually a sweatbay with unusually rough bark; of course, that means the sweatbay height record is even taller.

I really like the first shot of Beaver Dam Creek too.

Jess

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Larry Tucei
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Re: Black Creek Wilderness Trail Part 3

Post by Larry Tucei » Mon Feb 23, 2015 11:36 am

Jess- Thanks and I really have enjoyed exploring this region finding all these trees. I will nominate the Sweet Bay it's amazing how different Bark can be on the same species. Larry

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