National Geographic : 1964 Jul
But on this particular day the most impor tant members of our party were Oscar G. Larson, a surveyor for Arcata, and the sur veyors I had retained earlier. We were asking these men to perform a difficult task: to meas ure accurately some of the world's tallest trees, to arrive at precise figures, and to issue a joint affidavit. Each surveyor had his professional pride and reputation at stake. Chet and I felt even more personally involved. Would these trees really be close contenders-or champions? It was a slow, careful process. The survey ors sighted treetops, read angles, measured base lines, consulted books of tables-and then went through the whole procedure again. Finally, the three men compared their com putations-and the figures agreed. Giants Sweep Win, Place, and Show Their agreement would completely change the tree world's hall of fame. The four tallest trees in this grove-as attested by the survey ors' jointly signed statement-showed heights of 367.8 feet, 367.4 feet, 364.3 feet, and 352.3 feet. These trees would rank as the first, sec ond, third, and sixth tallest living things known on earth (list, page 16). rcnnv IVc( urr k U llt, Luwcw) uY -r -unt Y. MUtLLY ANU UUACHHNUMES BY PAUL A. ZAHL N.G.S.