31 December 2011

Happy New Year

As the sun sets on 2011 have a happy New Year

28 December 2011

Going... Going... Gone!!!

Over the past month the barn at Jason and Mary Abell's has gone through a dismantling to make room for a new pole barn.

Start of barn board removal

Barn boards removed

Remove structural support and collapse barn.

20 December 2011

MEMORIAL BENEFIT for Karson Riley Hopkins

Karson Riley Hopkins

Son of SFC Brian Hopkins (Retired) & Atisha Hopkins
of Rome, PA

Grandson of Dave & Judy Hopkins
of Wyalusing, PA

Karson fought a 2-year battle with Neuroblastoma Cancer. He turned 3 on November 7th. He passed away on November 16th.
Please come and support this family.

Spaghetti Dinner and Live Entertainment
Saturday, January 14, 2012
Wyalusing American Legion

Raffles, Silent Auctions, Chinese
Auctions, Live Entertainment

Admission: $3 at door or cost of meal

Cost of Meal: $7 adults, $5 ages 6-12, FREE for 5 & under,
TAKE OUT orders available

All Proceeds will be donated to the Hopkins family.

Contributions may also be made at any P&G Federal Credit Union under Memorial Fund for Karson Hopkins, c/o Atisha Hopkins.

For more information or to donate please call:
Crystal & Dave Baltrusaitis 570-833-0831
Danielle & Jonah Eberlin 570-833-4539
Deanna Vaskas 570-746-9469

18 December 2011

Pipeline Progress

Over the past couple of weeks, crews have been working on clearing the right of way for the Wilmot pipeline. Trees along the pipeline route were cut last March and now the crews are clearing and chipping the trees.

The following photo shows a section of the woods at our cabin property where the crew is in the process of removing tree stumps and stacking wood to be chipped.

This is the same section of the woods after the clearing in complete.

05 December 2011

Smile, You're on Candid Camera

I take a lot of pictures and sometimes people aren't aware I've taken their picture. I just found a picture of me on the internet, on Google Map!

The Google Map Satellite image for our neighborhood was updated with a more current, high resolution image. The resolution is so good I was able to find myself working at our cabin property.

When I started looking at objects in the lawn at our cabin it was easy to pick out my John Deere tractor and a hay bale. I soon remembered the hay bale was only in the lawn for one day in early October when I reseeded the lawn and I was there the whole time. On closer inspection I was able to locate myself working on the lawn. (Click on photo for enlarged view)

This view shows the cabin property, our barn property, the reclaimed well pad area, access road, driveway to the cabin and even freshly mowed areas.

Since this satellite view of Rome was taken after the recent flooding it also show some of the flood damage along Wysox Creek.

27 November 2011

Enjoying the weather

This year's weather has been unpredictable but I've heard very few complaints about this weeks weather. It's not often that we get 60 degree days in late November and Brenda Abell took advantage of the weather to take Max and Jabba for a walk.

01 November 2011

Pipeline Construction

Clearing of trees, stumps and brush along the right of way for the Wilmot pipeline has begun at Jason & Mary Abell's farm. Once the right of way clearing is complete the pipeline construction will begin

31 October 2011

Happy Halloween

Our son Brad attended a pumpkin carving party and sent us this photo.

28 October 2011

First Snowfall

The following photos of the first snowfall for this year were captured by my game camera. This is the first time the fawn has seen snow.

20 October 2011

The Woolly Bear Report

After three seasons (Spring, Summer and Fall) of unusual weather I decided to check with some widely accepted consultants on forecasting the coming Winter, the Woolly Bear Caterpillars.

The Woolly Bear Caterpillar (Pyrrharctia isabella) is the larval form of the Isabella Tiger Moth and some people believe the Woolly Bear can predict the Winter weather by the size of the black bands on its body. The more black bands, the worse the winter will be.

While a good share of the Woolly Bears I consulted had 5 to 6 black bands with 5 or 6 brown bands (~50% black), more than half of the Woolly Bears had a greater amount of brown.

This one had mixed black/brown at the head, 2 black bands, 6 brown bands and then a black band.

This one had 60% brown in the middle.

This one was ~75% brown with black on the head end and no black on the other end.

This one was brown on both ends with very little black in the middle. It was ~80% brown.

We will see if these weather consultants are correct predictors of this Winter but in reality the size of the color bands are more reflective of the Woolly Bears previous weather and food supply.

16 October 2011

Cabin Project Update

As mentioned in the 19 July posting, we have been working on "fix-up" projects at our cabin this year. We didn't get all of our work completed at the cabin but with the colder weather approaching we have shifted to other jobs such as winter firewood.

We did manage to replace all the supports under the cabin, reinstall the front porch, replace and stain the decking on the porch, install new porch steps, install gutters and downspouts, install drain lines and do some landscaping.

12 October 2011

Fall Fungus

While the colorful fall foliage gets the attention of most people there is a smaller display of color on the forest floor. Fall is also a peak time for members of the fungus family.

It's hard to miss a bright orange maple tree in the fall but a lot of the fall fungus is just as colorful, just smaller.

The following image may look like a large orange mushroom in a pine forest but the mushroom is less than an inch across and the "pine forest" is a carpet of moss.

Russula emetica (Poisonous)

Yellow Spindle Coral (Clavulinopsis fusiformis)

Clavaria zollingeri


The fall foliage of this year will soon fall to the forest floor where it will decay and feed next year's crop of fall fungus.

11 October 2011

Fall Colors

With the weather for the past several days being warm and sunny, the color of the fall leaves is starting to reach its peak. A view of our barn from the cabin property (click on image to enlarge view).

Two geese swimming on Miner's Pond.

10 October 2011

Wild Asters

As the Autumn daylight hours grow shorter the number of wildflowers in bloom get smaller. Insects, like these bees, checking out the wild asters (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae).

04 October 2011

School Time for Bears

I had set up one of my game cameras in the neighbors back yard and got this picture of mother bear showing the cubs the location of a food source (bird feeder).

01 October 2011

Autumn Olive Jam

The Autumn Olive (Elaeagnus umbellata), which is native to eastern Asia, was introduced to the U.S. in 1830 and is now listed as an invasive plant by the USDA. This bush was introduced as an ornamental and used for wildlife habitat but many farmers and landowners know this plant can quickly take over fields in a couple of years.

This year's weather has produced a bumper crop of fruit and I found a recipe for Autumn Olive jam on the "dreams and bones" web blog.

Recipe for Autumn Olive Jam

Gather 8 cups of ripe autumn olive berries. (Be sure to taste test the berries as you pick. I've found the bright red berries to be more tart than the dull red berries.)

Add 1 cup of water to the 8 cups of berries and bring to a boil then simmer for 20 minutes. Run the mash through a sieve and you will have about 5 cups of pressed fruit.

Measure out 3 ½ cups of sugar. Take ¼ cup of the measured sugar and mix it with the contents of a package of no-sugar-needed Sure Jell. Mix it in with the pressed fruit and bring to a rolling boil. Add the remainder of the sugar to the boiling liquid and return to a rolling boil and let it boil for one minute.

Then can according to canning directions and cool.

This will make about six 8 oz. jars of well set jam. Nice and tart.

30 September 2011

Bees, Butterflies and Goldenrod

The abundance and diversity of the Spring and Summer flowers has narrowed as we enter Autumn. The many rain showers of September have produced a bumper crop of goldenrod flowers.

Some insects took advantage of the flowering goldenrod during the dry weather between the rain storms. While the number of wild honeybees has dropped off in the past years, they were large numbers of them working on the goldenrod.

While not as common as a honeybee, a blue wing wasp enjoyed the goldenrod.

The Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus), which depends on the milkweed plant during its caterpillar stage, switches to flowers like the goldenrod in its adult (butterfly) stage.

Two honeybees and a bumble bee working on the goldenrod.

16 September 2011

Wilmot Pipeline

Earlier this week the activity was on the Wesauking pipeline route and today it was on the Wilmot pipeline route. A-1 Surveying was at the cabin property this afternoon placing new survey markers along the Wilmot pipeline route.

Later in the afternoon, Jeremy Freeland and Robert McCarty of Kleinfelder were at the cabin property to get GPS locations of wetlands along the Wilmot pipeline.

12 September 2011

Wesauking Pipeline Survey

A team from Navarro & Wright was in the neighborhood re-surveying the Wesauking pipeline route. This is yet again another survey of the same pipeline route that was surveyed in June by A-1 Surveying of Laceyville.

The survey team used the same GPS base station location near our cabin as did other survey teams.

New survey markers along Joyce Road near our barn.

09 September 2011

Flood Damage

The water level of Wysox Creek was down enough that we were able to travel to Wysox for supplies this morning. Some of the clean-up along Route 187 had started but here are a few photos of what we saw.

Some of the flooded cars along Route 187 had been removed but this truck was located in a field just north of Myresburg.

This car was being removed from the flood water next to the Wysox Township Building along Route 187.

Shortly after the car was removed from the water these two people paddled by in a boat.

A boat paddles by the house near the Wysox Township building.

A little creek near Weaver's house, south of Gillette's Bridge, dumped rocks onto Route 187.

A view of Wysox Creek behind Weaver's Barn. Notice the stream bank which was washed out by the flooding. There used to be a road to the creek but now there is a 20 foot drop off.

Flood damage at the trailer court next to Route 187 south of Rome.

The small bridge at Elliott Road and North Rome Road is plugged full.

Flood trash at a bridge on North Rome Road.

Bridge damage on Battle Creek Road between Route 187 and Robinson Road.

Flood trash under the Route 187 bridge near Bob Wilmot's.

Damage at the old "sawmill" building along Route 187 north of Rome. Flooding from Wysox Creek pushed in the side of the building.

Wilmot's B&B next to Wysox Creek along Route 187.

The bridge on Route 187 just north of Orwell Hill Road was washed out.

Washout at the north end of the bridge.

View from the creek.

View of damage on the underside of the bridge. The north bridge abutment is broken in several places and the bridge deck is resting on a tree.