Hydrowood salvages drowned logs from the bottom of Tasmania's Lake Pieman and turns them into hardwood timber

Hydrowood salvages drowned logs from the bottom of Tasmania’s Lake Pieman and turns them into hardwood timber

Many a friendship has begun at the pub over a sherbet or two.

But for mates Andrew Morgan and Dave Wise, a chance meeting at the university bar led not only to a long friendship, but also the creation of Australia’s first drowned timber company.

It’s logging but with a big twist.

The pair extract dying logs from under the surface of Lake Pieman, which was dammed for hydropower in 1986, flooding Tasmania’s remote north-west forests.

Sometimes the logs are more than 20 meters deep

Andrew Morgan and David Wise had to invent an underwater harvester to extract the logs.(ABC Movin’ to the Country: Tim Noonan)

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A time-consuming process

If you are scratching your head thinking, “If this is so genius, why hasn’t it already been done?”

It turns out extracting logs in tannin-stained, pitch-black water in freezing conditions in a remote part of the wilderness is a bit tricky.

For the Hydrowood lads it meant making up a lot of the processes themselves.

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