Foresters say it’s a good thing that Saratoga’s saw mill is back at work.
Saratoga Forest Management opened this January, 10 years after its predecessor, Saratoga Saw Mill, went out of business.
Wyoming State Forestry Division’s Josh Van Vlack says half of the area’s dense forests have been killed by bark beetles, but foresters can’t afford to remove the dead trees. Van Vlack says that the saw mill is paying for the rights to remove the timber, which is turns into two-by-fours.
The Wyoming Workforce Development Council has awarded a grant to Saratoga Forest Management to train new workers at a once-defunct sawmill they’re reopening.
The Saratoga Sawmill closed down years ago, along with many other sawmills in the Rocky Mountain region, due to low timber prices and inconsistent supply, among other factors. The closing of the Saratoga Sawmill hit the Saratoga and Encampment job markets hard.