Yardwork…Backwoods Style

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We took possession of our 40 acres off-grid this week and as is our style…dug right in.  With no time to waste before winter and Dan working half his life away from home, we have about four weeks of actual time on the land before we have to start to buckle down for winter.

Our goal for this year is to attempt to get a functioning cabin up before we’re working in the snow and ice…like last time we put on a roof.  There’s nothing fun about roofing in freezing rain. So without hesitation, the work began.

We marked the road with pretty pink ribbons, plowed through with the dozer, and roughed in our driveway.  We don’t even want to talk about what it’s going to cost to gravel it…that is, if we don’t find gravel on our land. So far,  nothing.

Dan may be the only ‘treehugger’ oilfield worker in Alaska…he has a terrible time making himself take out perfectly good trees.  I agree…but if I have to choose between that view of Illiamna and Redoubt volcanoes versus scraggly black spruce…the tree is going to be firewood every time. So we pushed. And cut. And pushed…until our view began to appear before us and our house spot started to take shape.

Once the trees were over and the heavily covered ground was even more scraggly with logs and branches, the real work began. The kids chipped in, the dozer kept on pushing, and the chainsaw worked overtime. Me?  I took pictures…


Today the rain gave us a break and we were really able to get some work done.  We cleared most of the firewood from the house site where we’d been cutting it for days.  The kids piled it into the fourwheeler trailer and stacked it for winter.  We pulled logs with the dozer, piled branches for a winter bon fire, and lined the straightest logs next to our new saw mill for turning into lumber later.

We prepared for the cold by building a fire pit from rocks we ‘acquired’ down the road…

And then we played a bit…

And then…the kids…and dad…took a little siesta. Because hard work deserves a little rest once in a while…and kids who know how to put in a full days work have earned some time off!


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