Yurok Tribe and Six Rivers National Forest repurpose 3 redwood logs into canoes

Yurok Tribe Chairman Joseph L. James stands with redwood logs. KLAMATH, Calif. — The Yurok Tribe and Six Rivers National Forest announced the development of a historic partnership Monday, according to a press release from the Yurok Tribe.

The Tribe’s Watershed Restoration Department removed three downed old growth redwood logs last month from the Redwood Experimental Forest in Klamath.

The project was possible due to the combined efforts of the Yurok Tribe and Six Rivers National Forest so the logs could be used for cultural purposes.

The three logs removed will be carved by the Tribe into ten traditional dugout canoes to be used in the Redwood Yurok Canoe Tours, a Yurok Country attraction that will open spring of 2020.

The remaining wood from the logs will be used for traditional plank houses and more.

Carver Dave Severns has been commissioned to carve two canoes.

“My teacher George Wilson took a look at this log and said ‘I never had the chance to carve on a log that nice,’” said Severns. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity. And in the end, it’s about teaching the children.”“Over the last 20 years, there has been a shortage of logs suitable for the construction of these masterpieces that hold great spiritual value for the Yurok people,” said Yurok Tribe Chairman Joseph L. James. “Carvers would sometimes have to wait years, or a lifetime, for the opportunity to carve a traditional canoe.”

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