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Tarzan the Tree Man Saves The Day

He continues his unconventional methods of tree service by climbing trees with a dangling chainsaw.

“Cami! Hey! I was out in the woods takin’ a leak behind the old culinary school on Route 159. Did you know there’s an old Sikes Family graveyard back there? From, like the 1600’s?”

Only Tarzan, our beloved tree man, can get away with such candid, face-value humor. His jeans are dirty and worn, work boots thick and secure. He’s unshaven and prefers Newport cigarettes. Like an excited child, he continued to explain his latest tombstone discovery.  

Tarzan is of the old-school teachings of tree service. There’s no mechanical bucket. No groomed crew of six men or an expensive truck with fancy tools.  Only a rope, a dangling chainsaw, lots of profanity and an exceptional amount of entertainment. He climbs the trees and rappels with no fear, like Tarzan.  

Tarzan is a legend around Suffield and Windsor Locks (and other towns, I assume). People around my area simply refer to him as “that crazy tree guy.”  Yes, his methods are unconventional, but he knows and understands the variety of native species, their roots and their distinct personality. He carefully assesses each tree, each limb, before climbing to the top with an idling chainsaw. His craft is calculated with formulas only he understands.  

We had the privilege of meeting Tarzan last year while he did some much-needed tree work after the wrath of last October's storm. Since then, he’s done an incredible amount of work for us, our neighbors and friends. For the individuals a bit apprehensive, I recommend trying his style on for size. His work ethic and manner are a bit colorful, but once Tarzan services your trees, you’ll overlook the rough exterior and see a man who genuinely loves what he does.  

With the blustering wind on the eve of Sandy’s wrath, my neighbor came over concerned about a 100-foot evergreen destined, he thought, to hit his house. We walked over and noticed that with each blustery gust, the tree swayed a bit more, separating the soil at the base and lifting the root. Since Sandy was well on her way, there wasn’t much time.  

We called Tarzan. With in 20 minutes, he showed up in his rusty, maroon truck with a cigarette teetering from his mouth and a rope around his shoulder. The wind was picking up, making it impossible to climb. Instead, he tethered the handicapped tree in a series of nautical knots to surrounding trees. If the tree were to fall, it would completely avoid the house, angled to fall in a cluster of neighboring trees. It was a temporary fix until conditions were safe for him to complete the job. It was tree physics!  

The strong gusts and needled rain continued throughout the night. Thoughts of home damage, my neighbor's tree, if and when we were going to lose power and the sheer madness of two major storms in one year was enough to make even the bravest souls feel helpless.   

Before 8 a.m. the next morning, Tarzan called inquiring about the tree.  Because of Tarzan's sense of urgency and knowledge of trees, it remained secure throughout the night.  

By 9:30, I saw his rusty truck in my neighbor's driveway and ropes dangling high from the disabled tree. I heard the humming of his chainsaw and the echo of his random yelps. I threw on my boots and ran over to thank Tarzan for saving the day. Before I arrived, the 100-foot evergreen had already been cut down. What was amazing to me was his casual nature about what he had done. If the tree had fallen on my neighbor's house, it would have crashed through their dining room and newly mortared chimney. The damage would be have substantial.  

To him, it was just another job. He was more interested in telling me about the old Sikes Family graveyard he discovered while taking a leak behind the old culinary institute on Route 159. Thank you, Tarzan, for your old school, unconventional ways and a sense of humor that keeps your customers coming back!

To read Cami's previous article about Tarzan, click here.

rich p November 05, 2012 at 12:27 PM
Having had Tarzan as a student years ago i also have had the pleasure of knowing him throughout his and mine many years The boy,now man, has never changed from the likable kid he was ,even to the point of getting himself out of mischief in school on a daily basis. I, too have used his amazing skills in tree service and wonder if u have anyway of getting in touch with him as I am to old to wonder the forests looking for him. He is a most honest anf giving individual. Thank you from an old school teacher and friend of his.
Cami Beiter November 05, 2012 at 12:42 PM
Rich, What a connection! I have Tarzan's contact information and would be happy to give it to you. Click on the link next to my picture above, you can send an email to me directly.
Susan LeClerc November 05, 2012 at 01:31 PM
I've used Tarzan as did others in my Enfield neighborhood. I recall one day when he was near the top of a neighbor's tree that was swaying in the wind during a sudden blizzard!! He's a little crazy but charges an extremely reasonable fee and does a good job.
Debbie Lindman November 05, 2012 at 02:26 PM
he has done every tree in my yard too!! great guy!
Brenda Cote November 05, 2012 at 04:18 PM
Many people wonder his name & how to get a hold of him? We all know him by Tarzan; does anyone have a phone # ?
Todd Zenczak November 05, 2012 at 05:01 PM
I have his cell phone. please feel free to email me and i will gladly pass it along. tzenczak@cox.net
Foomax November 05, 2012 at 06:11 PM
I hired him twice and must admit to being a bit concerned when he pulled a half-pint of Jagermeister from his back pocket while putting the spikes on his boots. He took a moderate swig and spit it on the ground while grumbling "bad tooth". He climbed and topped an old growth oak that had to be 75' high in my side yard. Then he put two twigs on the ground about 3 feet apart and told me he would drop the trunk between the twigs and if he missed i wouldn't have to pay him. My neighbors still talk about the show he put on and yes, i paid him.
TBower November 07, 2012 at 12:23 AM
we hired Tarzan to knock some trees down for us, which he did in about 2 hours. No problem. From our house he then went to my mother-in-laws, gave her an estimate of $2000. He asked her for half, which she gave him. He worked for about and hour and NEVER came back!!! She contacted him for 5 weeks, all she got from him was lies and promises. He never did finish the job and she was out $1000 bucks. I would not pay Tarzan any $$$ until the job is complete!
unhappy customer November 08, 2012 at 12:34 AM
I too hired Tarzan. He quoted me $2500.00. He asked for half when he started and only stuck around for a short time and NEVER came back!!! I called him for months and he had a different excuse everytime and lots of promises. I ran into him at a grinder shop and asked him how it felt to be dishonest and keep my money and got more excuses. I then found a great tree removal company that was great and I will use them again. Also while friends learned what he did to me I learned it had happened to others. happened to others. Expensive lesson leaded.
Ron Peterson November 08, 2012 at 06:50 PM
With comments of praise and others of damnation, it appears like political advertising. I think we have to assess an individual by our own experience of him and in your case, Cami, it's a bright golden assessment. Ron P.

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