Monday, October 20, 2014

Sasquatch Part 5. Footprints

I took the dogs over to our property this afternoon.  As is my habit, I wandered down to the deer trail to look for deer tracks.  There was a small set, either a small doe or a fawn.  Then I saw these.



When I first saw them, they were very distinct.  In the few minutes I took to fetch my camera, they were fading to what you see above.  By the time Earl, Judi, and Bill came over to see them, they were almost gone.  But in the pics above, if you look carefully, you can see toes, arched feet, and heels.  The top pic is a left foot, the second a right.

Walking back up the hill, I noticed that the bright LED light that burns 24/7 was gone.  As it turns out, it wasn't gone.  Something pulled on the electric cord that leads to it, pulling the light up to the top of the screen.


If you look, you can see the cord running from the top of the screen (under the roof) and to a tree.  That's about seven feet off the ground.  No, no footprints out there.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Cutting Down The Birch Tree

If you're going to live in Bleecker, you have to know how to cut down trees.   It's the law.  Earl had a stand of Birch trees that had one bent precariously over his dog houses, kennel, and driveway.  He decided he wanted firewood more than those Birch trees, so down they came.  He cut them all except for the one overhanging his kennel, and yesterday Bill and I gave him a hand.  Yes, beer was involved.

Earl and I had disassembled and reassembled my old 1980 Sear Craftsman chainsaw.  It was a very fine saw in its day, much better than the cheap crap that's sold today.  The Jonsered I bought at Tractor Supply last year ran for just a couple of hours before dying.  I had to replace the coil, which I did and got it running again this year.  As Earl is fond of saying, "Must be that cheap Chinese crap".  So we fixed my ancient Craftsman, and we decided to test it by cutting down that Birch tree.

First, Bill climbed a ladder as high as he dared and tied a rope around the tree.  The other end was tied (by me, using my best sailor half hitches) to Earl's tractor.  This was to drop the tree so it wouldn't hit the chain link kennel.  First, Earl used the tractor to roll a dog house out of the way so that he had an escape route.  Trees can kick when they fall, and you want to be well away from them.




Once a tree is down, it's firewood.


We need firewood here in Bleecker at this time of year.  Today's high is forecast to be only in the mid-forties.  Our time here is winding down, and it is time to think about getting ready to head south.  First though, we need to make sure we have our trees felled for next year's wood stove season.  It takes a year to properly season firewood.


Thursday, October 16, 2014

A Horse is A Horse, Of Course Of Course...

We bought a used Troy-Bilt rototiller from our friends Jim and Laurie.  They've been gardening so long that they no longer need it.  Their soil is so active with worms and such that it is tilled naturally.  We've been gardening for only one year, and need it, believe me.  Our ground is so rocky that it would be a stretch to call it soil.

It's an old Troy-Bilt, "Horse".  I had one about 35 years ago when I lived in Saratoga, and then sold it when I moved to Johnstown.  It has the exact same options of electric start and front bumpers.  I may have bought my own rototiller back.

Pam and I picked it up with the horse trailer.  Very appropriate for a Troy-Bilt "Horse".


Jim also tossed a small 2500 watt generator in with the deal.  Cool


Earl and Bill came by, and after quaffing a couple of beers, we decided to ponder the possibility of removing the top of Bleecker Mountain from my foundation.  After looking at this pic, I decided that I'm getting slightly thin on top.


That's me on the left (standing on a huge piece of granite), then Earl, and Bill.  Jack hammer?  Dynamite?  Nitroglycerine?  Atomic bomb?


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Wow, what a beautiful day yesterday was.  78 degrees.


Pam and I took advantage of the nice weather to haul some trees from over the bank to our "2015 firewood pile" and "2015 polebarn pole pile".



This is the top of the tree that whacked me upside my head and broke my neck.  The little one on the right.  It broke off when we tried to haul it up the bank.  Revenge is sweet.


Bessie the Tractor is awesome.  This little tractor was actually able to pull those trees up a hill, where Pam unhooked the chain or rope and I pushed them on a pile with Bessie's front bucket.




My old friend (emphasis on old) Bob commented yesterday about the danger of a spark from our bonfire igniting the woods.  This is where we have our bonfires.  A spark would have to travel a long way!


A very rare photo of Olivia napping.  99.99% of the time on our property, she's running all over the woods hunting.


Today we're picking up an old Troy Built model Horse rototiller from our friends Jim and Laurie.  We'll haul it in the horse trailer.  That's also a handy thing, that horse trailer.  Besides horses and hay, it hauls anything that fits.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Bonfire

I think that one of our favorite things to do on our little slice of the Adirondacks is to have a bonfire.  Pam and I had lots of paper stuff to burn, which we do instead of putting it out in the trash, where it would help fill in the county landfill.


We can burn some serious logs with all this paper.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Critter Tracks

The other day, Pam was crop dusting.  Not with an airplane, and not with insecticide, but with ashes from our wood stove.  Pam read somewhere that ashes are great for berry plants, and so dumped a bucket of them on her blueberry bushes.


This is Sassy the Cat.  Since she had kittens and after we got her spayed afterwards, she turned from all fangs and claws into a normal, lovable house cat.  She's almost at the pain-in-the-neck stage.


Our time here on the mountain is winding down, and it is time to start getting things ready for winter.  I used the post hole digger to drill the garden.  Drill the garden?  Yep.  The post hole digger also brings rocks up to the surface (when it is not breaking shear pins).  We're expanding the garden next year and I'm getting it ready to rototill.  Its easier to replace shear pins than tines.

The post hole digger is heavy and I wanted to keep it vertical.  I set it on a pallet, and used another pallet with hay baling twine from end to end to keep it vertical.  All I need to do next is to unpin it from the tractor's three point hitch.  Which I did.


Well, it didn't work exactly as planned, but it worked.


While sitting on the deck with  Earl and Bill, quaffing a few victory beers after cutting down some trees (yes, I did), I noticed animal tracks on the new deck.  


They look like cat tracks, but smaller.  Much smaller.  Judi's cats are all pretty big, so it might be a stray.  Maybe its the Bleecker Sasquatch's pet.  And no, the game camera pointed at the well for the past week hasn't picked up anything but dogs and cars.



Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Rainbow!

The day started off like all the others.  The dogs sleep soundly until 8 AM or so, when Olivia the German Shorthaired Pointer decides she needs to go outside and bark at things.


We ran some errands off the mountain, as we often do, and then returned to the Unabomber Cabin.  The three dogs act as if we've been gone for months, greeting us with wagging tails and kisses.  They then look at us with great anticipation.  Are we going to the property?  Are we?  Are we going to get in the car and go to the property?  Huh?  Huh?  Huh?

Yes.

Ruby loves toys.  Anything will do.  Balls, old Mickey Mouse slippers, or even sticks (the bigger the better).




And Olivia, the hunting dog, hunts.  


We had some rain, and then the most beautiful, brilliant rainbow appeared for just a few minutes...


Just stunning...


And if you look closely at the photo above, you can see a double rainbow.