We love sending pictures and gifs of happy smiling babies and animals to our friends. This happiness is contagious. You can’t manage to keep a straight face when you look at the glowing radiance of happiness. What would you do if you were driving around and saw a forest smiling at you, though? Welcome to Oregon’s joy – the Happy Hillside that greets you with its ‘Smiley Face forest’ – a design that has created millions of smiles. So the universe is a happy place after all.
Who is making the forest smile?
The Smiley Face forest project is about trees that form a smiley face. In 2011, the company Hampton Lumber planted one species of trees in a circle, and another inside to resemble two eyes and an arc. From a distance, this forest resembled a smile emoji. The planting was a part of reforestation, where a former timberland manager, David Timber, tried out this delightful idea. The trees are of different colors, due to which the face is a bright yellow and orange in the middle of the lush green mountain. The face itself is of Larch, while the eyes and smiling mouth is of Douglas Fir. The area is visible from the highway below, which makes it more beautiful. The entire planting took around a week, but the result sure left everyone speechless! And for all the right reasons.
How long is the Smiley Face forest expected to last?
The Smiley Face forest has been in existence for over a decade now. The smile is, as we talk, fading a little. The expected life of the forest is around 30-50 years, after which all the smiley trees should be harvested to make timber. This timber will be utilized to build homes in the area. A house built of smiles. Isn’t that great?
The forest lies along Polk County, Oregon’s Route 18, between Grand Ronde and Willamina. If you wish to watch this smiling forest in person, visit during fall. The fir trees start turning yellow, and the smile is nearly as bright as the sun.
We hope that, in 5 decades, when the forest is harvested, a new smile pops up. Or a laugh this time, maybe?
Smiles are not the only things trees are creating. Look at these cathedrals made of trees!