Never in my 40-year forestry career have I witnessed dynamics in the lumber/log markets as we are now experiencing. Lumber prices have moved dramatically higher over the last few months; however, log prices have increased at a glacial pace. Although log buyers have more money to work with, there is great uncertainty in the lumber/plywood market, and with generally ample log yard inventories, they are reluctant to move prices much higher. Cedar has been an exception lately, with keen completion for that species. On the unfortunate end, pulp markets have been very challenging since Ponderay Newsprint in Usk, Washington stopped purchasing logs and filed for bankruptcy.
Mike Wolcott, ACF, Certified Forester