Pignut, again-   Michael Davie
  Jan 17, 2004 13:03 PST 
Well, I've been out of town, but when I got back last week I finally got permission to climb and measure the pignut hickory in Swannanoa. So today John Parmenter and I did just that, after being blown out of it on Tuesday. It's really a beautiful tree, obviously pretty old and with great structure, though the trunk is hollow at about 110 feet or so- you can look into a racoon-sized hole and see the shell of wood about 4 inches thick. There are two leaders at the top, nearly equal in height, so we measured both. The west leader measured to 162'4", the east leader was 163'4". 

I'm happy that it is that tall, really amazing. You can't even really tell until you're up in it how it just keeps going. I'm giving myself a break on my lasered measurements because it's really hard to find a place to shoot without being in the middle of a multiflora rose patch, and all of the crowns of the tree around it are shorter and right in the line of sight. But I'm not sure how I got so far off the last time I measured, getting 161.75 and 166.95. Undermeasuring is more understandable, hitting a side limb, but whatever. It's still a super tall hickory! 

I didn't try to get any volume measurements, but I did get a few other measurements- at 96 feet, right below the main crown (there are a few other limbs scattered below) the girth was 7'11", and at 72 feet, right below the lowest limb, the girth was 8 feet even! The dbh is 11'2", and that's above any flare, it very slowly tapers from there up.

A lovely and venerable tree.


    Swannanoa limb Photos