Just days into the fall logging season, the Ax Men are already being put to the test. J.M. Browning races to meet a big deadline. Stump Branch Logging tempts fate by jury-rigging their old equipment. The Gustafson Company races mother nature as they attempt to build a road to access their logging site. Father teaches son the lessons of logging as the men of the Pihl Company haul in the forest's cash crop.
As a storm closes in on the Oregon coast, the Ax Men race to stay one step ahead. Jesse continues to push the J.M. Browning crew to meet its looming deadline, while muddy roads trap trucks on their way to the Stump Branch site. Robby battles for control of the Gustafson crew. Pihl Logging feels the effects of the slumping lumber market.
Across Northwest Oregon, the Ax Men continue to grind it out. Storm season arrived with a vengeance - shutting some crews down while others struggled to stay afloat. Now a bigger storm is brewing. The stalled housing market's effects are hitting the Ax Men hard. Jobs will be shut down; men will be put out of work. This week, the housing market hits home on "Ax Men".
The Ax Men are reeling from the news of upcoming layoffs. While Gustafson Logging tries to get back on track, Browning races to meet a big deadline. Pihl Logging is now under the gun - to finish their Pig Farm job, and to find more work. Despite Melvin's best efforts to keep up with his old equipment, Stump Branch loses one of its most important machines.
When the Pihl group's yarder operator is out sick the crew chief tries his unsteady hand at the controls. Gustafson has trouble with a skyline strung through a field of old growth stumps and then they get robbed. The Browning crew has one problem after another with its obsolete yoder. The Stump Branch crew works a blow down site and tried jammer logging.
At Browning Jesse's 3 day job stretches into 2 weeks his dad transfers him to another site working the chokers where he redeems himself with a make makeshift repair. The Gustafson team is mostly out of work except for two loggers operating a feller buncher on a flat tract of land. But they return to traditional methods to bring down a 170 year old spruce measuring 5 feet in diameter. The Pihl crew deals with a storm. The Stump crew encounters a few sticks while bucking logs while Melvin scopes his next job thinning bad trees from the forest.
The Stump crew sees there first snow. The greenhorn gets to do some cutting but has more equipment trouble. Jammerlogging in the snow and fog proves risky. Pihl Group's yarder operator shows up sick and is soon relieved for safety reasons. But his replacement has a bad reputation and is under the weather himself. Browning is hunting for work as all they have is a small blow down site.
Mistakes lead to some very close calls including a falling skyline, a leaner, a stump obstructing the skyline, getting stuck in the mud and a stolen chainsaw. A greenhorn and a supervisor come through strong when they are put to the test.
Gustafson spends near an hour in dangerous low gear hauling up a massive tree that turn out to be rotten. Then two storms converse off shore blasting Oregon with strong winds and causing floods and blocked roads.
Ax Men looks back at logging's toughest season. The crews of Stump Branch, Pihl, J.M. Browning and Gustafson Logging have battled the elements, each other, and themselves in the race for green gold. With just three weeks left in the season, though, the worst storm in 25 years threatens to change everything.
The Ax Men are ready to get back to work and put the storm behind them, but it's easier said than done. As Gustafson returns to work, Darrell makes a startling discovery that could mean the end for the Challenge job. The Stump Branch crew must figure out a Plan B and find missing greenhorn Michael. Still without phone service, Jay Browning struggles to gather his troops.
As logging's toughest season winds down, the battle is far from over. J.M. Browning continues to fall from glory, leaving Jesse to question the future of his family's business. The Gustafson crew returns to the Challenge, but rumors of a final pullout abound. The Pihl crew wraps Beaver and celebrates a successful year, and one member of the Stump Branch crew announces that he will not return.