Water quality best management practices are an important component for logging operations. Potential problems include sedimentation of streams and other water bodies, thermal pollution (damage by exposing stream beds to full sun for example), and biogeochemical changes (changes in soil chemistry). Forester Peter Smallidge notes that “cutting trees does not cause erosion, disturbing soil causes erosion.” Here are a few things to keep in mind:
Logging roads and skid trails should follow contours in the land.
Disturb as little soil as possible, especially along streams and stream beds. Skid in winter.
Deal with small amounts of slow moving water such a rain events by using waterbars, sediment barriers, and culverts.
Avoid streams whenever possible. Always cross streams at right angles.