46th Annual Fall Forestry & Wildlife Field Tours – Smyth & Washington Counties

October 14 •
9:00 am
EVENT DETAILS:
From Sapling to Snifter. Bourbon is a popular spirit these days. And did you know that the entire industry depends on well-managed hardwood forests? On this tour, we’ll learn about programs that help private woodland owners improve the management of their hardwood forests to ensure an adequate supply of high-quality timber. Then we’ll visit two mills to see how barrels, used for aging spirits, are made. And we’ll answer the question: why is white oak essential to this industry? Stop 1: Davis Valley Oak Orchard In this 25-year-old planted hardwood forest, we’ll examine the different options available for managing young oak forests. We’ll also learn about the Virginia Department of Forestry’s Hardwood Forest Habitat Initiative and how it can assist private landowners interested in applying sustainable hardwood management practices. The White Oak Initiative will also be discussed. Stop 2: Mature Oak Forest In this mature oak forest, we’ll asses its current condition and discuss what can be done to improve its current health and productivity. We’ll also offer ways to increase oak regeneration to ensure a productive forest far into the future. Lunch: A locally catered lunch will be provided. Stop 3: Speyside Stave Mill What makes white oak essential for bourbon production? At this stop, we’ll learn about the properties of white oak that make it the species of choice for aging bourbon, wine, and other spirits. Then we’ll watch as whole white oak logs are cut into staves that will form the sides of barrels. Stop 4: Speyside Cooperage At tour last stop of the day, we’ll see the final step in the barrel making process – the assembly of staves into world-class barrels suitable for aging a wide-variety of alcoholic beverages.
DATE & TIME:
October 14 •
9:00 am
LOCATION:
Speyside Bourbon Cooperage 6373 Lee Highway, Adkins, VA 24311
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