Kate Page competed April 12-23 in the woodchopping and sawing competition at the Sydney Easter Royal Show in Australia.

Page, who graduated from Grant Union High School in John Day in 2009, competed in timbersports while attending the University of Montana in Missoula.

Since graduating from the university, she works as a firefighter for the Forest Service in Montana and still enjoys competing in the sport nationally — and now internationally.

“I love the hard work that goes into it,” Page said. “I love the history of the equipment they used for logging.”

This was Page’s first time traveling out of the country to compete.

During her April 9-17 stay, she took fourth in her heat in the underhand championship chop, but only the top three advanced.

Chopping underhand involves a log placed horizontally on a clamp with two foot holes cut into the log for the competitor to stand on. The competitor cuts through their log while standing on it, first cutting one side, then turning around to cut through the other side.

In her handicap underhand chop, she had a mark of 8. She took second place, beating the third-place finisher by 10 seconds, but was disqualified.

“I learned that their blocks down here are much harder,” she said on April 17, while in Sydney.

She said the women cut and saw on wood commonly called “woolybutt,” which is a type of eucalyptus, belonging to the myrtle family that is native to Australia.

She and Arden Cogar Jr. took seventh overall in the Jack and Jill event.

The Easter Royal Show, celebrating rural traditions as well as modern-day lifestyles, is Australia’s largest ticketed event.

Revenue from the show allows the Royal Agricultural Society to invest in agricultural programs, competitions, education, youth and rural communities.

Page isn’t taking a break from timbersports now that she’s back in the states.

On Friday-Saturday, April 26-27, she’ll face off with U.S. opponents at the Pro-Amateur Show in Missoula. Then she’ll prepare for the Western Professional Men’s and Women’s Qualifier held Saturday and Sunday, June 1-2, in Shelton, Washington.

Ten women and 20 men will compete in Shelton, and the top three women and top five men will advance to the July 26-29 Stihl Timbersports U.S. Professional Men’s, Women’s and Collegiate Championship in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Page, who is the daughter of Rick Page and Donna Speakman, both of Mt. Vernon, was in the top eight for women Stihl competitors in the nation last year.

“Right now, I’m a U.S competitor,” Kate Page said. “They do not have a women’s world series yet, only men’s. I hope one day there is a women’s world series, and hopefully I’ll be in it.”

Angel Carpenter is a reporter for the Blue Mountain Eagle. She can be contacted at angel@bmeagle.com or 541-575-0710.


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