26 July 2011

How deer beat the heat

We have been working at our cabin for the last month and during the current heat wave I've noticed a small buck spending a lot of time near our pond.

The sound of us working doesn't seem to bother the buck and I can get within 30 yards of him before he will leave his "nest" next to the pond.

On one of the hottest days he was seen standing in the pond, cooling off, with two fawns.

19 July 2011

This Year's Cabin Project

When we bought the cabin property we knew the supports for the cabin would need some attention. Over the years, the 4X4 supports for the cabin have yielded to wind and gravity, and are slowly tilting.

Now that the spring rains have stopped so we can dig holes without them filling with water, we started the project by removing the porch deck so we could access the supports on the west side of the cabin. As so often happens when doing repair work, we found additional problems to fix. With the deck removed we found rotten wood.

Not only was the 2X8 floor joist rotted, some of the sub-floor was rotted. We cut out the rotten sub-floor and replaced it with pressured treated plywood. We then replaced the single 2X8 floor joist with two 2X12 pressure treated joists which now match the size of the rim joists used on the north and south sides of the cabin.

With the rotted wood replaced, we jacked up the cabin and removed the 4X4 supports one at a time, and dug deeper holes for the new supports. Concrete forms were positioned in the holes and held in position by temporary blocks until dirt was back filled around the forms.

Once the back filling was complete, the temporary blocks were removed and concrete poured into the forms. Each of the corner supports had a "J" bolt positioned in the concrete for attaching a bracket to the rim joist.

After the concrete cured, two pieces of pressure treated lumber were placed between the rim joist and the top of the concrete supports. These pieces of pressure treated lumber extend out from the rim joist to allow the porch deck to rest on the new supports when it is re-attached.

View of a side support.

18 July 2011

The "flame"

For the past couple of days a large "flame" has been visible from the north end of Joyce Road. The "flame" is caused by flaring the gas well across the valley at the JACOBS well pad. The following photo of the "flame" was taken from our cabin located two miles from the JACOBS well.

A close-up of the flare from the entrance of the JACOBS well pad.

Well Pad Reclamation - Days 22 & 23

The grading of the reclaimed well pad site is complete and for the past two work days the main activity was hydroseeding the site to get some grass growing to reduce soil erosion.

Loading the sprayer truck with water, grass seed, mulch, fertilizer, lime ...

15 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 21

With the well pad reclamation nearly complete they are running out of room for the equipment at the site and started parking at the entrance to the access road.

A view of the reclaimed site taken from the hill behind our barn.

14 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 20

The main activity today was working on removing the topsoil stockpile and spreading it. This work is moving along but going slow due to the dampness of the topsoil, it is almost as wet the day it was pile up during the rains of April. Because the topsoil is so wet, it needs to air dry for a day just so it can be spread and graded.

13 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 19

The topsoil stockpile is shrinking as the topsoil is hauled out to cover the dirt reclaimed from the pad area.

Topsoil from the stockpile is hauled to the west side of the site, above the silt socks, and the dozer with GPS grades the topsoil back to original grade.

With the topsoil on the south end of the site dried out and finish grade complete, the hydroseeding of the south end started today.

The west side of the site after hydroseeding.

12 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 18

The "Super Silt Fence" that was along the base of the well pad was removed today.

Once the "Super Silt Fence" was removed, the stone next to the silt sock could be removed.

A tractor arrived today to pull the disc harrows. Mary is standing next to the tractor tire to show the size of the equipment.

A view of the site from the field behind our barn. The dust cloud is from one truck crossing the site.

11 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 17

The pad reclamation has shifted from hauling dirt up the hillside to hauling the topsoil from the stockpile down the hill. We've had a couple of weeks of dry weather but there is standing water in tracks created by the excavator.

The topsoil stockpile is still very wet from the spring rains and needs to dry up so it can be worked.

This set of heavy duty disc harrows arrived on the site today.

09 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 16

The east slope is nearing the original grade of the hillside as the dozer with GPS grades the freshly moved dirt.

More dirt from the bottom of the hillside is moved to the top.

With some of the rough grading complete, a dozer spreads topsoil from the stockpile.

The topsoil in the stockpile is still wet from the spring rains. With the continuing dry weather a dozer works late into the evening spreading the topsoil so it will dry out.

08 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 15

A new version of hoop rolling? Practicing for Cirque du Soleil? No, the crew needed to move the rings used for the cellars from the pad area so they could remove dirt.

The last of the pad area was removed today. A view of where the access road entered the pad area.

The west slope of the pad is removed except for a small berm used for erosion control until reseeding is complete.

View of the rough graded, reclaimed field.

Does anybody have a can or two of "fix-a-flat"?

07 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 14

Last night's rain, 4/10 of an inch, helped to hold down the dust and the dirt hauling continues.

The rough grading on the south end of the site is complete.

A GPS equipped dozer spreads topsoil over the rough graded dirt. The GPS dozer smooths out the topsoil by grading backwards.

View of the access road from the northwest corner of the pad. The "Porta-John" has been moved from the pad area to the access road near the stream crossing.

06 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 13

More clear weather and more dirt moved from the west slope to the east (uphill) slope. View from the northwest corner looking toward the access road.

View looking southwest from the northwest corner. The grade of the old field is taking shape.

05 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 12

Another warm clear day and the northwest slope of the pad is slowly coming down to the old hillside grade.

Trucks hauling the dirt uphill to the east side of the old pad area.

By the end of the day the northwest corner was low enough to see the treeline to the south.

In the southwest corner of the sediment control area, the dry weather has lowered the water level and dried out the sediment.

01 July 2011

Well Pad Reclamation - Day 11

The pad reclamation has proceeded from the south end of the west slope and is now working on the north end of the slope.

The weather continues to stay dry and clouds of dust follow the trucks as they transport the dirt.

View of the pad area looking southwest.