All You Need To Know About A Faller Career
You consider becoming a faller but are still not entirely sure whether this career path will be the right way to go for you or not?
Stick with me since I will show you everything you need to know about being a faller in the following chapters.
Not only will you learn how much you will make as a faller, but you will also learn a lot about job satisfaction, working hours, work-life balance, job prospects, future outlook, educational requirements and much more.
I also provide you with an extensive FAQ section where I answer the most popular questions about a faller career.
After reading this article, you will have a much better idea of whether you still want to become a faller or rather want to work in a different field instead.
Table of Contents
What does a Faller do?
Fallers cut down trees and make sure that nobody gets hurt in the process.
Fallers are crucial to assure our wood supply and are important logging workers.
Without loggers, we would not be able to cover our wood demand and would have a much lower living standard as a society in general.
Responsibilities & Duties of a Faller
- Cutting down trees
- Assuring the supply with wood
- Making sure nobody gets injured
- Complying with laws and regulations related to woodworking
- Measuring trees
- Segmenting trees
- Making wood ready for transport
- Use of machines to make woodwork easier
- Removing small branches
- Assuring a high quality of wood
- Making sure that trees fall in the right direction
- Selecting the right trees that should be cut down
- Assessing logs after cutting
- Evaluating the quality of the logged wood
- Determine the purpose and the use of the logged wood
- Cleaning and maintaining woodworking machines
What a Typical Day of a Faller looks like?
Most fallers start their workday between 8 and 10 a.m.
After getting short instruction from their boss regarding what they have to do that day, they will go straight to work.
The first thing is to drive to the respective location where trees have to be cut down.
After arriving there, you will just cut many trees for hours until you will have a short lunch break.
After working for many additional hours, you will usually finish your workday between 4 and 6 p.m., depending on the workload you have to achieve and also on the lighting conditions.
Hence, while you might quit your workday earlier during winter months when it gets dark early, you may work longer during summer since there will be daylight until the late evening in most regions.
Faller Salary 2023
Faller salary brackets 2023
|Salary Brackets||Salary (per year)||Salary (per hour)|
|Top 10 %||> $78,000||> $38.88|
|Top 25 %||$66,000 – $71,000||$32.93 – $35.39|
|Bottom 25 %||$41,000 – $46,000||$20.41 – $22.95|
|Bottom 10 %||$34,000 – $38,000||$16.87 – $18.92|
|Range||$34,000 – $81,000||$16.87 – $40.43|
Faller salary 2023 by expert level
|Level of Experience||Salary (per year)||Salary (per hour)|
|Entry level||$34,000 – $42,000||$16.87 – $20.89|
|Junior||$39,000 – $47,000||$19.38 – $23.41|
|Professional||$45,000 – $58,000||$22.36 – $28.90|
|Senior Professional||$56,000 – $63,000||$27.88 – $31.45|
|Expert||$61,000 – $76,000||$30.39 – $37.93|
|Top Expert||$73,000 – $81,000||$36.34 – $40.44|
Faller salary by state 2023 (average)
|State||Salary (per year)||Salary (per hour)|
|District of Columbia||$52,900||$26.31|
Job Security for Fallers
Fallers don’t enjoy a high level of job security.
While they are important to keep our system running, they are still pretty replaceable and you can never be sure how long you will be able to stay in your job until you get finally fired as a faller.
Future Job Prospects of Fallers
Not only current job prospects are rather questionable, but also the future outlook is rather poor.
In fact, many fallers will be replaced by machines in the near future and this means that many people in this industry will lose their jobs.
Consequently, if you search for a job with high job security for decades, you should not become a faller but rather go for a different career instead.
Working Hours of Fallers
Fallers get to work between 8 and 10 a.m. and work until 4 to 6 p.m. most of the time.
Hence, working as a faller is a classical 9 to 5 job and allows you to leave your workplace relatively early so that you can meet up with your favorite people after work or spend time with your family.
Job Satisfaction of Fallers
Most fallers are not happy with what they are doing for a living since they just don’t make good money while it is still pretty exhausting to work in this field for a longer period of time.
Many fallers also complain about physical health issues and many of them also have to retire at a rather young age.
Thus, many fallers think about changing their careers due to the relatively poor overall working conditions.
Promotion Opportunities of Fallers
Promotion opportunities for fallers are rather limited.
In fact, there are not many promotion options and once you work in this field, you will do the same work for many years or even decades without having any prospects to really climb the corporate ladder as many other people who work in an office job and get promoted quite frequently.
Career Levels of Fallers
- Faller intern
- Junior faller
- Senior faller
- Faller with personnel responsibilities
- Manager of a woodworking company
- Owner of a woodworking company
Fields and Types of Fallers
- Fallers specialized in broad-leaved trees
- Fallers focused on conifers
- Fallers specialized in really big trees
- Fallers specialized in segmenting and sorting logs
- Fallers with additional expertise in foresting
- Fallers with expertise in reforestation
- Fallers with focus on environmental development
- Fallers who specialize in sustainable woodwork
- Fallers who aim to preserve the habitats of animals
Educational Requirements for Fallers
You don’t need a fancy degree for becoming a faller.
Even though there are degrees for fallers, what’s much more important than looking good on paper is that you have a natural talent for woodworking and that you are also in good physical condition and are motivated to work in this field.
In this case, holding a high school diploma will be enough to start your logger career.
How to become a Faller
- Inform yourself about the advantages and disadvantages of being a faller
- Apply for an internship at a faller company
- Make a good impression and work hard during your internship
- Stay in touch with your colleagues
- Finish high school with decent grades
- Apply for jobs as a faller in your region
- Master the job interview
- Get your first job
- Work hard and build some expertise
- Start your own woodworking business (optional)
Character Traits you need as a Faller
- You should love working in nature
- You should like hands-on work
- Attention to detail is important to assure safety of the operations
- You should be willing to get dirty
- You should accept minor injuries since you will have to deal with them quite often
- Willingness to work in a rather risky environment
- Willingness to work outdoors
- You should be a team player
- Ability to push through difficult times in case something goes wrong
Hard Skills for Fallers
- Knowledge of how to cut down trees
- Expertise in appropriate safety standards and procedures
- Expertise in local laws and regulations related to woodworking
- Knowledge of how to operate heavy machines in a safe manner
- Expertise in how to get trees falling down in the right direction
- Knowledge of tree diseases and pests
- Ability to evaluate for what purposes a tree could be used
- You should know in what cases you are not allowed to cut down trees
- Knowledge of how to make woodwork sustainable
- You should be in good physical condition
Soft Skills for Fallers
- Ability to minimize the adverse impact on nature
- Empathy for our natural ecosystems
- Good people skills help you lead a team
- Patience helps to avoid risky mistakes
- Good time management skills
- Ability to deal with stress in a decent manner
- You should be able to organize yourself well
- Ability to convince the general public of the importance of preserving nature
- You should strive to only cut down trees that are no longer of use for nature
Exit Options for Fallers
Since fallers are pretty specialized and don’t learn many other skills apart from cutting down and processing wood, they will also not have many exit options.
Hence, while fallers may also be able to work as foresters, many fallers often work in their jobs for many years or even decades since they simply don’t find someone in a different field who would be willing to employ them.
Faller – Similar Careers
- Logging equipment operator
- Forest and conservation worker
- Environmental activist
Faller Career FAQs
Is working as a faller physically demanding?
Working as a faller is heavily physically demanding.
While you can use modern machines to make your life easier, you will still have to work with your hands quite often and fallers often come home from work tired since they have to work in a physical manner all day long without getting enough breaks to recover.
Is working as a faller mentally demanding?
Working as a faller is not really mentally demanding.
Even though you have to make sure that trees fall in the right direction, you still don’t have to think as much as people who have to solve complex problems all day long and you will have enough brainpower left to work on other projects apart from work.
Is it dangerous to work as a faller?
Working as a faller is pretty risky.
In fact, there are some people who lose their lives every year since trees don’t fall as planned and also due to other accidents related to woodworking.
Hence, you should be willing to take this risk before you decide on working as a faller.
How long do fallers stay in their jobs?
Fallers often stay in their jobs for quite a long time since they simply don’t have many options in the job market and are heavily reliant on their job in the woodworking industry.
Thus, make sure that working as a faller is what you really want to do for a living since it will be pretty hard to get out of this field.
Is it easy for fallers to find a new job?
Since machines will replace many fallers in the near future, it will be pretty hard for fallers to find a new job.
Consequently, once you get fired, you might just end up unemployed with very bad prospects of ever finding a job again.
Is it hard to switch from being a faller to another field of work?
It is also pretty hard for fallers to find a job in a different field since they simply lack the skills needed in the job market right now.
For instance, fallers often have pretty poor digital skills, although those skills are urgently needed for most jobs out there.
Hence, you might just get trapped in the woodworking industry without any prospects of getting out there anytime soon.
Do fallers have a high social status?
Fallers don’t have a high social status.
Even though they are important for society since they assure a constant supply of wood, fallers don’t get the same level of appreciation as doctors or other people who can really save lives and you will therefore also not be admired that much by your family and friends for your career choice as a faller.
Can you help out your family and friends as a faller?
It is pretty hard to help out your family and friends as a faller.
Even though you could consult them regarding what wood they should use for specific purposes, you will still not be able to do as many things as other craftsmen like carpenters, roofers or welders who can really fix things around the home.
Can fallers work remotely?
Fallers are not able to work remotely. Instead, they have to be present at their workplace in-person to cut down trees.
Hence, you will not have the same high level of flexibility as someone who works in a classical office environment and is able to work from home quite often.
Is it easy to find a partner as a faller?
Fallers also have a pretty hard time in the dating market since they don’t make good money and also don’t have a high social status.
Since they also have a risky job, it will be pretty hard for many fallers to find a partner for a long-term relationship since they are just not good providers.
Do fallers have to work on weekends?
Fallers don’t have to work on weekends most of the time.
Consequently, you will have time to make nice weekend trips with your family or to meet up with your favorite people.
You could also spend this time with your hobbies which you like even more than working.
Do fallers have to work on holidays?
Fallers also don’t have to work on holidays.
While many other people like waiters, drain drivers or policemen often have to work during those days, you will have a rather relaxed time in this regard and can just spend those days with the people and on the things you like.
Do fallers have to work at nighttime?
Fallers don’t have to work at nighttime.
In fact, working at nighttime is almost impossible for fallers due to the visual issues that come along with it and fallers therefore mostly work during daytime and will work in a rather classical 9 to 5 environment.
Do you have to travel as a faller?
There is no need to travel as a faller.
You will just cut down trees in your local region and while many other people who work in demanding office jobs will have to do business trips on a regular basis, you as a faller can stay at home and spend time with your family.
Are faller pensions good?
Since most fallers don’t make good money during their active careers, also their pensions are pretty poor.
Moreover, fallers often have to spend all their money on basic things of life and will not be able to save and invest enough money.
In turn, fallers often run into financial problems at retirement age.
Are faller salaries going up?
Faller salaries have not been going up substantially over the past years and this trend will likely continue in the future since more and more work can be executed by machines and the demand for human woodworkers will decrease in the future.
Can you have a positive effect on society as a faller?
It is pretty hard to have a positive effect on society as a faller.
Even though you will do an important job to keep our system running and to supply us with wood, you will still not have an educational influence on society as teachers or other people who will shape the attitude towards life of future generations.
How long does it take to become a faller?
Since you will not have to get any fancy education, you can start your career as a faller right after finishing high school.
You will often work as an apprentice for a few years until you will be officially regarded as a regular faller by your colleagues.
Is it difficult to become a faller?
Becoming a faller is not difficult at all. All you need is a decent high school diploma and you are ready for applying for faller jobs.
Hence, you don’t have to spend lots of money and time on your education but can rather start making money at a relatively young age.
Do you need to be smart to work as a faller?
You don’t need to be smart for working as a faller.
What’s much more important than your IQ is that you are motivated to work in this field and that you also have the physical strengths to carry out the demanding work that is waiting for you on a regular basis.
Do fallers have a good work-life balance?
Fallers have a pretty decent work-life balance.
They don’t have to work on holidays and weekends and also don’t have to work at nighttime.
Many fallers will come home relatively early and will therefore have more than enough time to spend with their family.
Do fallers have to work many extra hours?
Fallers don’t have to work many extra hours.
Instead, they have a rather rigid working schedule and will just quit their work in the late afternoon and continue working the next day while many other people have to meet strict timelines and will often have to work overtime to reach those goals.
How to maximize your chances of becoming a faller?
The more experience you have in this industry, the higher your chances of getting a job as a faller.
Hence, you should do an internship at a local woodworking company and stay in touch with your colleagues so that you already have one foot in the door once you finish high school and apply for a job.
Can fallers work part-time?
Fallers are often not able to work part-time since they need the money from a full-time job.
Especially in expensive regions, fallers are often not even able to afford any luxury with a full-time job and a part-time job will for sure not be enough to cover their bills.
Do fallers work indoors or outdoors?
Fallers work outdoors most of the time.
Consequently, you should be willing to work under adverse weather conditions and if you rather want to enjoy your time in a protected environment where you can use air conditioning or heating, you should go for an office job instead of a faller career.
What does the workplace of a faller look like?
Fallers work in the forest most of the time.
Hence, working as a faller can be great for you if you love nature and want to spend your workday outdoors instead of sitting in a rather artificial office building and doing work on a computer.
Do you have to look good for working as a faller?
Your looks don’t matter at all for succeeding as a faller. In fact, you will have almost no contact with clients and you therefore don’t have to care about your looks that much.
What’s much more important is that you are really interested in what you are doing to stay motivated and deliver great work results in the long run.
Is a faller career beneficial for your private life?
Being a faller is not that beneficial for your private life since you will not make much money while you still often come home tired due to the physical nature of the job.
Moreover, you will also put yourself at risk of serious accidents and you may just not find somebody who would be willing to share his or her life with you since your partner may not get happy with overall conditions in the long run.
Do you need a college degree for becoming a faller?
There is no need to go to college for becoming a faller.
While those programs exist, they are nice-to-have but not a prerequisite for working in this industry.
What’s much more important than formal education is that you are really interested in woodworking and also willing to work with your hands.
Do you need to be certified to work as a faller?
You don’t need to be certified for working as a faller.
Instead, you can start your faller career right after finishing high school and you will learn most of the things you need on the job and from your colleagues.
How much does it cost to become a faller?
Becoming a faller is not expensive at all.
Since you don’t need to go to college, you can save lots of time and money on college education and can even make money right from the start of your career at a rather young age.
Is being a faller a good career?
Most fallers are not satisfied with what they do for a living since they have to work in a hard physical environment and put themselves at risk of serious accidents while they still don’t make good money and often also have to quit their careers due to physical health issues.
Is it easy to start your own business as a faller?
Starting your own faller business is pretty hard since you would need to spend lots of money on machines and other equipment and there are also huge infrastructure costs related to it.
Consequently, if you want to work self-employed, there are many other industries where it is much easier to go this career path.
Can fallers teach themselves?
While you might be able to teach yourself skills to a certain extent, you will still need help from experienced colleagues to really learn your craft and also to work as a faller in a safe manner to minimize the risk of accidents at work that could potentially cost your life.
Do fallers make good money?
Fallers don’t make really good money.
While you can make a decent living as a faller if you live in a rather cheap region, you may struggle to pay your bills if you live in a region where living costs are pretty high and in such a case, you may even need to work a second job to pay your bills or to afford some luxury.
Is it ever too late to become a faller?
While it is never too late to start your faller career, you should still start it at a rather young age since working as a faller can be physically demanding and the older you get, the harder it will be for your body to keep up.
Also your chances of getting a job in this field will decrease with your age since your risk of health issues will be higher and employers will be more reluctant to employ you.
Do fallers have to quit their careers early?
Many fallers have to quit their careers early since their bodies simply don’t work properly in their 50s or 60s anymore to carry out the physically demanding work.
Hence, many fallers get unemployed during that age and may get into serious financial trouble since they will often no longer be able to pay their bills.
What is the most challenging thing about working as a faller?
The most challenging part of being a faller is that you always need to stay focused at work to avoid serious mistakes that could take away your life or the lives of your colleagues.
Hence, you will also have to deal with a high level of emotional pressure.
Can you provide for your family by working as a faller?
Since fallers don’t make good money, it is also pretty hard for them to provide for their families.
Quite often, your spouse will also have to work to cover your expenses, especially if you live in a region where rents and living costs are pretty high.
Will fallers suffer from old-age poverty?
Due to the rather low income, many fallers also have rather low pensions.
Moreover, fallers are also not able to save and invest enough money for retirement and once they get to retirement age, old-age poverty may become a real problem since many fallers who have to quit their active careers may no longer be able to pay their bills.
Can fallers retire early?
Most fallers are not able to retire early since they just don’t make enough money from their jobs and have to work until they are old.
Some fallers even have to work in a different field at retirement age since their pensions are too low to cover their basic expenses.
Do fallers get a fixed or variable salary?
Fallers get a fixed salary most of the time and even if they get a variable salary, the variable fraction will be rather low.
Hence, your performance at work may not really matter for your salary, even though it will matter for your chances of keeping your job in the long run.
Can you get rich as a faller?
Getting rich as a faller is almost impossible.
If you really want to make good money in this industry, you should not work as an employed faller but rather start your own faller or woodworking business and scale it as much as possible.
Do fallers need a second job?
While you will not need a second job if you live in a rather cheap region where living costs are pretty low, you might need a second job if you live in a region where rents and other living expenses are pretty high since your faller salary may just not be enough to pay your bills.
Do you get continuous training as a faller?
While you will get extensive training during your first years as a faller, you will no longer get this training when you are already an experienced woodworker.
Hence, if you want to get even better at this point, you have to teach yourself and just learn on the job.
Do you get paid when you are sick as a faller?
Most fallers don’t get sick pay and in case they are not able to work, they just don’t make money.
Consequently, you should have an emergency fund for rainy days so that you can still pay your bills for a while in case you get sick and are not able to work.
Do fallers have a high level of responsibility?
Fallers have a high level of responsibility for their colleagues and have to make sure that they meet strict safety standards so that they don’t put the lives of their colleagues at risk and to minimize serious accidents at work.
Can fallers work abroad?
Fallers are also able to work abroad.
However, before you migrate to another country, make sure that you meet educational and formal requirements in this country and that fallers are in high demand in this country since you may just end up unemployed otherwise.
Is it stressful to work as a faller?
Working as a faller is not that stressful.
Even though you have to make sure to comply with strict safety standards and always have to stay focused, you can do your work in a rather relaxed manner and will not have as much time pressure as someone who works in a demanding office job and has to get things done in a relatively short period of time.
Is it boring to work as a faller?
Working as a faller may become boring if you are not interested in nature and in your faller job in general.
However, if you really love nature, chances are that you will never get bored with what you are doing for a living since you will really enjoy your time at work.
Is being a faller hard?
While working as a faller is not that hard on a mental level, it is still exhausting from a physical perspective and you should be willing to work with your hands and to lift heavy things on a daily basis before you decide on becoming a faller.
Are fallers at risk of burnout?
Since fallers don’t have to deal with high levels of stress at work, they are also not at great risk of burnout but can rather work in a relaxed manner without having that much time pressure.
Is there a dress code for fallers?
There is no official dress code for fallers. Quite often, the company you work for will still provide you with safety clothing so that you are protected and can minimize the risk of getting injured at work.
What kind of fallers are paid the most?
The more experience and responsibility you have as a faller, the more money you will make.
Hence, if you want to make really good money, you should strive for a position with personnel responsibility instead of staying a normal woodworker.
What percentage of fallers are women?
Only around 8% of fallers are women while the vast majority of fallers are men.
Since woodworking involves lots of physical work, it is pretty hard for women to work in this industry since they have to stress their bodies much more to get similar results compared to their male colleagues.
Do I need a mentor to succeed as a faller?
You don’t need a mentor to succeed as a faller.
What you need is a passion for cutting down trees and spending time in nature in general. Only then will you stay happy with what you are doing in the long run.
Will you be personally liable for mistakes as a faller?
If you are not careful and don’t comply with safety rules and regulations related to woodworking, you may also be personally liable for mistakes as a faller.
Thus, make sure to get proper insurance to be covered in case of emergency.
Do fallers have a high life expectancy?
Lumberjacks don’t have a high life expectancy since they are at great risk of accidents at work and may lose their lives sooner or later.
Hence, if you want to have a safe job where you don’t have to fear serious accidents at work, you may rather want to work in a classical office job.
Do fallers suffer from sleeping problems?
Since fallers don’t have to work at nighttime, they will also rarely suffer from sleeping problems related to their jobs.
In fact, fallers often come home tired from work and have a pretty easy time falling asleep.
What states are best for working as a faller?
You should favor a state where woodworking is in high demand and where living costs are rather low so that you can afford a decent lifestyle as a faller and don’t have to work a second job to pay your bills.
Who do fallers work with?
While fallers don’t have client contact most of the time, you will still have to be a team player since you will have to work with many colleagues and have to make sure to protect them as best as possible.
Is working as a faller cool?
Working as a faller is not considered cool in society right now.
However, social norms change quite frequently and you should therefore not choose your job according to the coolness level.
Instead, you should consider all the factors that really affect your life on a daily basis.
Can you start a side hustle as a faller?
While fallers have enough time to start side hustles, it is pretty hard to start a side hustle around cutting down trees.
Instead, you would have to reinvent yourself and learn new skills.
Do you have to be creative as a faller?
There is no need to be creative as a faller since you will do the same things over and over again and as long as you follow the standard procedures and make sure that nobody gets injured, you will be perfectly fine.
How employable are fallers?
Fallers are not that employable anymore since many human fallers get replaced by machines and in case you lose your job, it may be hard for you to find another job in this industry anytime soon.
Are fallers happy with their jobs?
Most fallers are not happy with their jobs since they don’t make great money while they still have to put their lives on the line since accidents at work are pretty common and they also have to stress their bodies and may have to quit their careers early.
Is working as a faller exciting?
Working as a faller is not that exciting since you will do the same things over and over again and after a few years, you will just have a certain routine and there will not be much room for excitement anymore.
Can you have a positive effect on our environment as a faller?
Fallers can have a positive effect on our environment, at least if they inspect trees carefully before they cut them down and make sure that healthy trees will be preserved.
What are the pros and cons of working as a faller?
If you are still interested in becoming a faller, you should also have a look at the pros and cons of a faller career.
Interviews and own research.
About the author
My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people about the different career paths that are possible in our current state of the world. In my opinion, people often make the mistake to choose their profession solely based on how much money they can earn from it instead of doing what makes them really happy.
This is quite sad and I just want to give people a more objective picture of how a fulfilling career could look like. I did the same when I started working in consulting after finishing my Master’s degree in Economics. However, I’ve quit pretty soon after that since I haven’t found true meaning in my job.
Now I can do what I really love to do and I want to enable as many other people as well to go this exciting path towards happiness instead of money.
I conducted various interviews with employees to give you a good impression of what working in different fields will look like and that you can make the best possible decision regarding your future career choice.
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