Construction Journal Entry Week of 1/21/18

1/23-25/18 I went up to Camp Serendipity for 3 days: Tuesday through Thursday.

I arrived about noon and found six inches of new unplowed snow on the ground. I figured I could barge in and get parked without digging away the berm that the snowplow had thrown up from the road. I got across the berm alright, but I got stuck about 20 feet in. I got out and did a little digging and was then able to get loose and drive the rest of the way up to the hairpin turn. I backed up, turned around, and then parked at the foot of the concrete stairs heading out. More snow was due, so I wanted to be in a position to make an easy exit.

I carried my gear up the concrete staircase in one trip without clearing the steps first. Then I hoisted the flag, built a fire in the stove, had my lunch, and took my usual nap.

When I got up, I restored a few things after the scout visit. I put away all the clothespins, took down the clothesline, used the porch crane to put the OSB table top away under the porch, re-arranged furniture, and a few other assorted things. Then I shoveled snow off the back porch and steps.

On Wednesday I woke up to eight inches of new snow that had fallen overnight. I went out and scooped the snow off the back porch and steps again. Robert called and talked about coming over. He had left his snow shovel here and was wondering whether to make a trip over to get it. He ended up deciding not to.

I went out to the front porch and re-installed Dr. Dick's rebar cutter on the porch deck and I re-installed the bench grinder on the workbench. Then I spent some time scrubbing off a bunch of black marks one of the scouts had made on the floor with his boots. Fortunately, my scrubber got them off. Then I went back out on the porch and started drawknifing the pole I will use for the last rail out there.

I wasted a little time trying to use a couple of long clamps to hold the pole tight to the Grid F2 column so I could drawknife the pole. It didn't work very well. I did drawknife a little before the clamps let go but I needed a better anchor. I stopped for lunch and a nap and to think about a better anchor.

When I got up, I decided to use a tire chain to lash the pole to the column. Then I used a few turns of clothesline rope to frap it nice and tight and it held like a charm. I then drawknifed the top half of the pole.

Next, I went down and split and stacked two rounds of firewood.

On Thursday morning I heard Mike's tractor clearing another new layer of snow from the driveway entrance at 4:30 AM. I went back to bed. Then Dave called before breakfast and we had another great conversation. After breakfast, I postholed over to the privy with a shovel and an extension ladder. There was a dangerously heavy load of snow on the privy and I started clearing it off after clearing off the top of the mixer on the way.

When I had a good start on the privy roof, Robert drove up. He had evidently changed his mind. I got down off the privy roof and went to bring him his shovel. He came up instead and we talked about the logging project and getting the skidder up on top. He said I had gotten twice as much snow as he did. He had a look at the work I had done with the scouts to clear away the two big berms under the eaves, but now the berms were built back up with the new snow.

We started digging the berms out and he fired up his snowblower just to get an idea of the job ahead. While he was working, I went back up and finished clearing the privy roof and putting the ladder away. Then I re-joined him and scooped out the berm on the west side. He had pretty much cleared off the roadway. Then I helped him finish up the berm on the east side.

If it doesn't snow again, he may be able to get the skidder up on top the way it is. If it does snow again, at least there won't be quite so much snow to dig away the next time. Robert left about noon. I had my lunch, packed up, and scooped about 30 feet of snow away from in front of the truck and up to where Mike had cleared so I wouldn't high center. I left for home at 1:30 with my upper body feeling very much exercised.

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