Wednesday, November 02, 2005

An Interesting Fall (to me)

Well, we've had some great fall weather -- it's still warm enough that I haven't put the boat away yet. My back has been behaving itself this fall, mostly because of extensive stretching I've learned to do. As a result, I've been able to a lot of really hard physical work through this summer and fall. It feels good to do the work, and then it feels good to know I can still do it if I take care of my back.

So I've done a lot of work at Douglas Lake trying to protect the shoreline from erosion, and have about 110 of 165 ft of frontage bolstered with other rock from the shoreline. It won't really prevent ice from coming in and doing what it wants, but high water and resulting erosion really should be minimized. I've also paid attention to the 9 acres behind the cottage in a way I've not for a long time. I started by locating all the standing dead maple I could and getting it cut and hauled for firewood. So now I've burned through almost all of the punky wood I cut a few years ago and have 3 cord of seasoned rock maple. I hope to buy a fireplace insert for the fireplace and improve the efficiency of burning the wood I do cut, and getting better heat in the cottage to boot.

In cutting the wood an hauling it, I realized that I had quite naturally created a fairly straight trail back into the woods from the burn pile that a pickup truck could drive on -- this opens up a lot of possibilities for that back property. Maybe a camping platform and a sauna?

In Petoskey, I removed all the 18X18X4 stepstones that were in the lawn to the front door, and got 5 yards of topsoil delivered to fill those holes and all the other uneven spots in the lawn for the snow to sit on all winter in preparation for spring grass planting. That's a lot of topsoil! So I brought the good wheelbarrow that my father Claire built in the 60's down from the cottage to use to haul -- worked great, but it's time to replace the stringers on the wheelbarrow -- another great project.

Anyway, all this great weather and physical work is making for a great fall. Winter will be here soon enough.