SOME people burn logs on their fires, others using them for landscaping their garden – and some use them to test the limits of their strength, stamina and grit!
That was certainly the case at the latest instalment of the Mossley Lumberjack challenge, held at The Allotment Café, formerly The Flying Teapot, on January 19.
The competition was set up a few years ago by Sam Clayton and his business Woetree Tree Services and it is run annually for free.
The reigning champion is David Short, who has dominated the competition over the years and defended his crown this time around.
Sam explained: “It was through doing tree work around the Mossley area that I got the idea for the Lumberjack challenge.
“We are always dragging logs and branches up and down steep back gardens and I thought it would be fun to do a fitness competition based on that.
“I found that I could whoop most people at physical challenges just from doing outdoor manual labour so I thought it would be interesting to pit local athletes against manual labourers and see who comes out on top.
“The results were great! People have come to compete from all over the place. We once had one of Britain’s strongest women take part.”
The competition is getting tougher every year and this time saw five events over the afternoon, all involving dragging, lifting, throwing or chopping logs.
“You need to be a well-rounded athlete to do well in the contest,” said Sam. “The Lumberjack is a world renown symbol of strength stamina and grit.
“The title so far has always been won by a Mossley local. David Short from top Mossley is the reigning champ and has dominated the competition for the past few years.
“He’s a professional adventurer with great natural athleticism. No one has been able to dethrone him – even ex-military and fitness professionals have fallen short.”
But Sam revealed: “We don’t take the competition too seriously though. We have a lumbersexual award where the crowd vote for the most attractive lumberjack!
“It’s a fun day out for all the community, it’s completely free and anyone can come.
“We don’t have any funding. I Just rely on a lot of help from my friends.
“Most challenges like this happen in summer when it’s nice but we do it in January so it’s something to look forward to when it’s bleak and horrible!
“When we started, we used any bit of land we could find but this year was the best yet because we had a great venue at the allotment cafe so that’s going to be our home from now on.”
To see more pictures and a video from the event go onto Woetree Tree Service’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/woetree/