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Kelley Brothers Tree Service tackles tough, big jobs fast

Local, safety-minded, nimble crew ready to work for you

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PITTSFIELD — There's a tree on your porch. Or on your car. Or on your house. Think propping up your old painter's ladder and your plug-in chain saw is the way to go?

No way, says Noah Kelley, 26, who co-owns Kelley Brothers Tree Service with his brother, Jonah, 23.

"If a homeowner is trying to cut something, if they think they need a ladder, do not do it," says Noah Kelley. Kelley spoke to The Eagle on Thursday, while his brother was out managing their crews, working nonstop in the wake of hurricane Isaias.

The storm knocked out power to thousands, and left the Berkshires littered with tree debris. That's nothing new to the Kelley brothers, who live in Pittsfield but grew up in Lanesborough. They were inducted into the logging and tree work business in their early teens, by their father and uncle, a logger.

EARLY START IN FIREWOOD

"My father started showing me how to run a chainsaw when I was about 14 years old," Kelley recalls.

Beginning with the basics, the ins and outs of cutting firewood, the brothers soon continued their education in tree felling during the summertime on their parents' land in Lanesborough.

About the time Noah Kelley got his driver's license, they started advertising in The Berkshire Eagle for their cut and split firewood, which they delivered to Berkshire homes over winter break in a pickup truck, loading, unloading and often stacking again by hand for customers.

In addition to learning from family, they learned from each job, he says. From there, things went up, including climbing school in Georgia, where they learned the basics. Soon after, they earned commercial driver's licenses and learned crane operation a few years after that.

"At 16, I would have never thought we'd be where we are now," says Kelley, who, with his brother, credits their parents for their strong work ethic.

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?

In 2017, the brothers moved their business from their property on Pecks Road to 17 Taconic Park Dr., where they've been located since and have even expanded into the space formerly held by friend Jason Smegal of J Smegal Roofing.

They've come a long way since the days of their pickup truck with no dumping bed in the back.

"These days, we're a high-production, high-volume tree company," says Kelley.

Where there was once a lone pickup truck with a makeshift bed, there's now a fleet of trucks, including a 13,000-pound skid steer and a knuckle boom truck that plucks giant logs off the ground and stacks them — "it's like a Swiss Army knife or Leatherman for tree work."

And a wood chipper? Kelley Brothers' self-loading "grapple chipper" can handle up to an 18-inch tree.

Kelley Brothers have landed some notable accounts, including the clearing required for new construction at the recently opened Miraval Berkshires resort in Lenox.

Kelley says company performance is paying off on Google, where 15 recent customer reviews have given the company a 5-star rating.

BAD TREE, SINGLE LOT OR ACREAGE

Whether you're going to be putting in a housing development, clear a single lot or remove that crushing tree from your house, Kelley Brothers is ready to serve.

"It's what we're set up for, no matter if it's a single lot or 5 acres," says Kelley.

Because the company is nimble, "we're set up for high volume in a short amount of time. A lot of companies can accomplish that, but not in the time that we can," notes Kelley, who with his brother relies on a team of three additional full-timers.

"We're a group of young guys, and we all move pretty quickly, and we're up to date on the latest safety practices and newest equipment," says Kelley.

Bluetooth headsets are used at all times in employee helmets, so "there's never any dangerous situations where we won't hear someone. Not every tree service has that," notes Kelley. "One of the main issues on a forestry job is the noise. You can't hear what's going on, and it distracts you. These headsets protect your ears and keep you safe."

The registered LLC also is fully insured with a $2 million liability policy for coverage.

PROACTIVE TREE REMOVAL

In addition to larger jobs, the Kelley team works for homeowners and businesses that need to do emergency work, as well as proactive work to remove problematic limbs and trees before they come down in a storm.

"We do a lot of residential removal as well, taking down trees overhanging the house, or a group of trees around a building, or just trees that should be dropped," says Kelley. The company will do some trimming, but its work is mostly removal.

What happens with the downed wood is up to the customer, says Kelley. Some want it hauled off, and there are others who just want the trees taken down and left where they are.

Requests for bush or hedge trimming, or a minor limb hanging over a driveway, are referred out.

If you're in the Berkshires, or located in nearby Connecticut, New York and Vermont, call Kelley Brothers Tree Service for a free estimate before the next storm knocks your trees around. The team can be reached at 413-822-3659 or 413-822-4008, by email at kelleybrothers.treeservice@gmail.com, or online at kelleybrotherstreeservice.com or Facebook at kelleybrotherstreeservice.


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