One Step Closer


Back in ’99 when the lil’ lady and I bought our first house I bought an old military dodge and mounted a large Meyer’s plow on it to keep our short (compared to now) driveway open in the winter. I moved the whole rig up here and used it the first couple of winters when we were renting the place in town. A couple of years ago a guy was selling a 50′s model John Deere tractor with a loader and I traded him the ol’ dodge (without the plow) for the tractor and an International 4×4 with a huge PTO winch……That winch at idle ripped the front bumper right off The Dodge when it got stuck one winter………. I reasoned I’d use the tractor and the winch rig more. It didn’t really work out that way, but it’s looking like The Boy will be getting “Elmer” (the International) and I will get the Deere into service next year.

Last year my father-in-law gave me “The Kaiser” a ’71 CJ5 with a Western plow already mounted. I was so pressed for time last year I couldn’t get the Meyer mounted on anything and with my fingers crossed resigned myself to keeping my road open with The Kaiser. He did really well even though that road really needs a rig that weighs more than 3000#. Mind you last winter was pretty mild, we never had more than three feet of snow on the roof at anytime, as compared to six feet on the ground the year before. But anyways today I mounted the big plow on the one ton Dodge. I spent yesterday doing my Annual Fall Plow Truck Maintenance Repairs on it, which included replacing the other axle lift block among the usual fluid changes and checks.

I don’t think I ever shared the corporate stupidity I ran across this summer with the Dodge, so here it is. Think about a super heavy duty truck with the most powerful (at the time) diesel engine available, the strongest (at the time) one ton axle available, same with springs and add air bags that have allowed me to pull loads that will make a “Super-Duty” squat like a 1/2 ton. Trust me I saw this this summer after I blew out the rear drive shaft. Anywho, those idiots replaced the almost solid cast iron axle spacer blocks with hollow aluminum blocks. Mind you people who don’t abuse……I mean haul as much as me up roads that are represented by two dashed lines on maps would probably never know. As for myself, I had one crumble and fall out this spring, and the one I replaced yesterday had chunks missing from the sides.

Enough for today.

Published in: on September 30, 2009 at 1:20 am  Comments (2)  
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No More Leaks….for real this time


We finished putting up the Frost Guard (self-adhesive, fiber reinforced, self sealing, tar paper) on the whole roof today. I can barely move my right arm, but I can check one more thing off the Must Do Before Snow Flies List.

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Published in: on September 27, 2009 at 12:23 am  Comments (4)  
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Monster Power / New Neighbor


We got a new Gulch neighbor (one of ‘em pesky anarchists), and installed enough solar panels (with help from the new neighbor) to run the whole house. The first four from the left are mine, the other eight are his, which I was able to find a secure place to store them for him.

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Speaking of solar we are picking up huge amounts of passive solar heat now that it is fall. This is what was planned except we are still getting daily highs near 90 degrees. Thanks god we have so much mass that the lows in the forties equal it out.

Published in: on September 24, 2009 at 12:16 am  Comments (3)  
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New Toy for the Backyard


I’m not sure if I have shared any pictures of our backyard yet. I know a lot of the land in front of the house has been shown in the home pics, but here are some of the other direction.

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A friend of mine was hurting for money the other day and made me a deal on a new (for us) 4-wheeler that was too good to not grab. So we now have three, next year hopefully we can find another good deal so we will have one for everyone. The new one is pictured on the far right in the following pic.

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I wrote about our early harvest of potatoes in the last post, here is what they look like closer up, and the fixings for that nights dinner. I need to thank bff for the seed for these wonderful spuds too.

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The only thing we bought for that dinner was the beef, and come hunting season we won’t even need to buy that. Every year we provide more and more for ourselves. What a great feeling. Oh, the sherry was donated to us after J. left it at a friends house where it wasn’t loved.

Published in: on September 18, 2009 at 12:40 am  Comments (2)  
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Harvest time.


We had an early VERY light frost about four days ago. Everything made it through except for the potatoes, so we harvested them today. Next year we will be planting our spuds on May 1 instead of June 1 we ended up with only 6X our seed because most hadn’t gotten bigger than 1.5″.

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We have been trying to run a full load through the pressure canner every week. Last week we did 31 pints of BBQ pork, pork broth, and hot dogs.

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We have a raincheck for 60# of chicken that was on sale for .80/# this week that we are picking up tomorrow. This I will be canning as chicken and noodle and chicken and rice soup. I expect to get 74 pints of soup.

The Boy and I have been working on our root-cellar for over a month now. We have hand dug at least 30 YD3, but it’s almost done and right in time to start taking in our root crops.

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This is what it looked like before we drained it.
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Here are some pics from our summer party we had a few weeks ago.

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This is why it is so unwise to fall asleep before 9PM at a party:

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One last thing. We have lots of wonderful Morel mushrooms up here, but the Giant Puffballs that were fairly common where we use to live are much more rare. Lucky we have friends who know we like them and share.

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Published in: on September 14, 2009 at 9:56 pm  Leave a Comment  
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