Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Decisions, Decisions.

I have always had a hard time making important decisions. Everythings got to be just right. I did'nt think things would be so hard about setting up a place to live on. There are so many obstacles, power line, creek, ditches, propery line, trees, trying to hide from work, sewer, cistern, propane tank, solar power, sewage mound (that one takes alot of space), parking, where am I going to put my fire pit after it's all done. Thats the main concern.

Anyway, I found all my property markers except for one. I have a pretty good idea where that one should be, but it should'nt really matter for now. If for some reason I have to have one put in, it should'nt be a real big deal, but until that time, it is good enough for me. I have spent the last few days either at work, getting some lowboys and trucks ready for action, but mostly I have been trying my damdest to stay away from work so I can get my plans all done and sent in for approval. I'm kinda worried that there will be some silly thing that will get me denied. I have never done anything like this before and I'm not real sure how easy the county is to get along with. Sometimes I think it would be alot simpler to follow in Richard Proenneke's foot steps and just build a cabin in the bush. lol.

It will be a little while before I actually start swinging a hammer at my shack, there are a lot of things I need to do while waiting for approval once I actually get my plan into the county office. My acerage is a mess. There happens to be a big pile of wood and other miscellaneous stuff right on the potential building spot.

It would be kinda nice to get that all cleaned up and maybe slap some kind of a wood shed together to put it all in. My backhoe also needs a little TLC. The main boom pin and bushings are wore pretty good. Some other pins are a little wore too, but those ones are not a real concern at this time. My place in town will need a little TLC also, if I plan on renting it out. And all the while, trying to hide from the employer as much as possible. Won't they please fire me? lol. Just kidding, it will be nice to take a drive into the wilderness the odd time with pay. Tomorrow I gotta go to Edmonton and pick up a piece of equipment. The boss man just bought two more machines. I guess he must know something that I don't about having some work going on in the near future.

For now I have a plan where everything is supposed to go. I am getting pretty close. I just have to look into a couple of other issues and I'll get things going. There are some good and bad points as to where the shack might be built. Can't win them all. Where the sewage treatment mound is planned to go, it will be sitting on about a 6% downhill grade, this will probably cause the mound to be wider than it normally would have to be. From the stake right in front of the camera in the picture below, then straight ahead to a stake up to just before the garage and then to the right to the bush line. That is the mound. I might possibly be able to make it smaller than that, but from my calculations so far, this is about what it will look like. I could be wrong, hopefully. I just "hope" it dos'nt need to be bigger. lol. And then it is quite possible they might reject it anyway. The shack is going to be built up past the garage and camper into that far right corner. Thats the plan so far, anyway. It will be over looking the creek, and set on about a 45 degree angle with the garage. I will lob a little off the top of those four spruce trees that are straight past the garage to open up the south veiw of the sun for optimal solar panel sunlight. I will miss a tiny bit of the early morning sun in the East, but will catch it for the rest of the day until it goes down in the West at night.

I have been getting my exercise lately, alot of walking back and forth and measuring. I have been out there probably 4 times, just trying to decide. lol. I guess, I should'nt rush things anyway, it could be my home for alot of years to come. There is only so many options availeable also, so there's not much I can do differently really. Finding all the possilbilities and then doing some research of the allowable dimensions and what not does take alot of time.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Frugal Canadian Surveyer

I thought maybe I have given mother nature enough time to get rid of most of the snow. Here is a picture of that picnic table again, just for snow comparison reasons. There is still a little of the white stuff laying around, but I can get around real good. I also drive my truck right in if I want.
So I phoned around for a couple estimates to get an idea how much it would cost to get my 3.6 acres of land surveyed. I need to know where all the corners are. There are six of them. One guy is a minimum of $750.00 but I never did get a maximum out of him. I did'nt think of it. The other guy said $500.00-$600.00 if all the markers are there, but if not, it could run about $2500.00. From experience I think I know how this all goes. I thought I better go and give it try myself, maybe even if I can find 2 or 3 stakes it might help. Apparently the stakes could be buried 6 - 12 inches in the ground and they were put in quite a long time ago. It is harder than I thought. I did'nt have much luck today, I do know of two survey markers near the entrance of my property, and I'm not totally sure which one to go from, I'm sure one is my corner, but which one? Hopefully I will figure it out eventually. It is quite possible I might have to get a real surveyer to help me out with this eventually, but I'll see what I can do for now.
The creek is running pretty fast, although it is not as deep as I always thought it usually was this time of year.
I don't know what it is, but sometimes the simplest suppers are the best. And the little dog agreed with me 100%. We both like roasted weiners over the fire. It was nice weather for awhile, but it ended up getting pretty windy and rainy before the weiner roast was all complete. I did'nt really feel the wind that much, but I could hear it and the trees were acting real funny.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Still Have Some Snow

I went out to the land again this weekend to check out the snow situation. I decided to let mother nature remove the snow for me, it should'nt be much longer. Last week I was wishing I could get around like a dog, but this week is a totally different story. I can now walk around pretty well, the snow is only to the top of my boots in most places. But they are tall boots.
For the poor little dog, it is a totally different story. Last week she was running all over the top of the snow with no problems at all, this week the snow is pretty soft and mushy. How the tables turn. I was trying really hard not to laugh at her, I was just laughing with her. I think. LOL. She is kinda hard to see in the picture, unless you are looking for her.
Here is a picture of the picnic table and the catwalk, just for a comparison from a week ago.
I really thought that I would have seen water running in the creek by now. I imagine that it is running under the snow a bit, but in a few days time I expect it to be kinda like a raging river. Just a bit of an update. Bye for now.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

My Exercise for the Month

Closer to town, when I look in all the fields, the snow seems to be getting shallower all the time. Almost shallow enough to walk on. Except for at my place I guess. Kinda thought I would go out there today and get some measurements, so I had a better idea with my upcoming plans of a cabin. Kinda had my heart set on lighting a fire and roasting some hotdogs also. There was a little more snow out there than I thought there would be. Even my backhoe will have a hell of a time cleaning that up. I'm sure it will do it, but it won't be easy. That snow is deep and heavy. I can just about walk on it, then I crash through it deeper than my knees. I had a couple of boards in my truck, that I thought I would use as snow shoes. They helped, but I sure hope nobody was watching the event. It was very slow going. I tried several different methods of walking on these things. I thought I would throw one out there, walk on it then move the other one, it kinda worked, but then I would break through and it was very slow. I took the top lace out of my boots and tried tying the makeshift snowshoes to my boots. That was short lived. Finally, I just held the lace by hand and kinda pulled the boards along as I went. It worked sometimes, but it was still pretty slow going, and I imagine I looked pretty stupid out there. My dog was running circles and I am pretty sure she was probably laughing at me. Maybe she was embarrassed that someone would see us. Sometimes I wish I were a dog. This one has it made in the shade.
Thankfully the snowmobilers, must not have noticed the no trespassing signs that they drove right by to get in there. There were snowmobile tracks about halfway in that I could walk on, but after that is where all the fun began. I know the signs must be pretty hard for them to notice. lol
So I got in there anyway. It sure was alot of work. My campfire idea is out and so is the measuring. I know that if I had to build a campfire, I surley could have, but it just did'nt really seem worth it today with it so hard to get around. But I did manage to bar-b-que my hot dogs. I also found another really good use for snow.

Those are only 0.5%, but they are kinda like the real thing.

I made myself a little catwalk over to the picnic table.
This last picture shows the trail I had to break. I went in and out on this one and I mangaged to break one of my snowshoes coming out. I guess maybe I had too many hotdogs.

Well I don't know. I did'nt get much accomplished but it was a nice day. I did envision some potential spots for the upcoming cabin, what ever it may be. I am looking for the perfect spot where everything will be allowed and also what would work best with a solar energy system in amongst the trees etc. I did notice today, that at noon the sun seems to be pretty darn high. So in April, I can't really see much problem with shading on solar panels etc. I should have sat out here for a day in Dec and I could have been quite abit smarter about that. I guess the trick is to get the panels up high and maybe trim a little off the top of some trees. That should'nt hurt spruce and pine I hope, does it? I know a good solar energy system would be best in the wide open area, but I do love being surrounded by trees. So I guess I will work around that somehow.

I am not even perfectly sure where all my boundery lines are, I have a good idea, but that is not good enough and I think I have to get a surveyer in here to find those for me before I can even apply for a developement permit. Thats kinda what I got out of my last conversation with the county girl anyway. I guess I had better get plowing some snow soon. Maybe even tomorrow. I have a feeling this is all going to be a long drawn out process, but I do want to try and keep it all legal so there are no complications down the road. The land is only 3.6 acres, it has six sides, and with a creek running around the outside edge of alot of it, so hopefully everything is going to fit. There is always a way, I guess. I hope. This is all going to be a learning experience for me, the next time everything will be alot smoother, including the purchase of the land. Later days.