Pictured is Branden Sirguy of Port Angeles, Washington. He is shown competing in the springboard chopping finals in Webster Springs, West Virginia.
For those of you who have tried this, you know that swinging an axe while balancing on a springboard is difficult -- at any speed -- and Branden is fast.
Brandon uses a special completion axe made in Australia. It is razor sharp. As you can also see, Brandon is in good shape and can swing it with force. His axe sinks deep on each blow. Six bags of concrete keep the stand from moving.
Here, Brandon is competing in an obstacle pole event. In this event, the competitor starts at the base of an elevated log. Once the timer starts, he must run up the big log and cut the end off a small log attached to it. This event requires speed and balance.
To do well in an obstacle pole event, a competitor must travel fast, and have a saw that cuts fast, too. Brandon's "OP" saw is a modified Husky 372XP, which is a large saw for such a small bar, but it cuts the small log extremely fast. The saw chain is also specially prepared for this event.
This is a double buck event. Like most timbersports, strength is a factor, but here coordination is key. Both men must synchronize their strokes perfectly for maximum cutting speed.
Branden is seen here in another chopping event. You can see the marks he makes on the block prior to the event. He focuses on these marks, which helps guide each swing.
This is another springboard chopping event. In this event the competitor starts on the ground. Once the timer starts, he must chop a notch for and set two springboards. Once he's on the highest one, he chops through the tree. The time stops when the top block is severed.
When Branden was in college, he studied forestry and competed in college-level timbersports. Today, he works as a forester and is a rising star among professional timbersports competitors. He competes in events throughout the US. Look for him in upcoming Stihl Timbersports Series events on TV.