MONT ALTO, Pa. ― On the morning of April 13, 2018 a group of forestry students and members of the Mont Alto Woodsmen Team gathered around the Nittany Lion to watch Penn State Mont Alto forestry professors Craig Houghton and Beth Brantley unwrap a package that was sealed tightly in a cardboard box and mailed from Australia.
Once the many layers of wrapping were removed, a beautiful white custom-built Flentje Axe Box was revealed that included a single buck handle and axe wedges inside.
The group was impressed with the box―a gift to the Mont Alto Woodsmen Team―and pleased to accept it from world-renowned international lumberjill Martha King ’11, a Mont Alto Woodsmen Team alumna.
“The Penn State Mont Alto Woodsmen Team thanks Martha King for her generous gift,” said Brantley.
“We are extremely grateful to her. She has been a very strong supporter of the Mont Alto Woodsmen Team and has volunteered time and expertise to us over the years.”
King, who came to Penn State Mont Alto as a student from Chadds Ford, Pa., is daughter of arborist Rob King and followed in her father’s footsteps by joining the Penn State Woodsmen Team.
“I competed at Penn State Mont Alto from 2007 to 2009 and thanks to the encouragement of my professors and coaches Beth Brantley and Craig Houghton, I began competing professionally while working in Germany in 2013,” according to a “Timbersports Athlete Profile” about King on Stihlusa.com.
She now competes in international lumberjack sports in disciplines including the Standing Block Chop, which mimics the motion of chopping down a tree and requires the competitor to chop through 12 inches of vertical white pine as fast as possible; the Single Buck, which involves making a single cut through a 16-inch piece of white pine using a 6-foot-long saw; and the Underhand Chop which she claims is her favorite event and for which she is a 2015 world champion. This event requires competitors to stand with their feet apart on a 12- to 14-inch diameter log with the goal of chopping through it with a racing axe.
“We are so fortunate to have this ongoing close connection with Martha,” said Brantley