Dogtrot at Hightop

Started by Redoverfarm, November 25, 2007, 08:34:07 PM

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Also, an excellent field of fire.  Of course, if the current powers in Washington and elsewhere have their way, you'll be reduced to throwing stale dinner rolls to protect your property and loved ones.  Nice stone work!  Well Done.
"A society that rewards based on need creates needy citizens. A society that rewards based on ability creates able one."


Yesterday was the closure to a great year at Dogtrot.  But with the impending winter season it was necesssary due to no permanent heat source to keep the water lines from freezing.  The weekend was good with recent accumulation of approximately 7" of snow.  Temperature for the most part was in the mid 20's. Between two of the gas wall heaters set on low and the fireplace the temperature stayed basicly 65-70F inside the cabins main floor with the lofts being about 10 degs warmer.

The road was starting to get bad with the packed/ice accumulation.  I did manage to travel the Forest Service Road (No Snow Removal) unassisted without chains after I plowed the 1-1/2 mile trek with the Four Wheeler on Thursday before the additional 3" of snow fell over the weekend.  The previous years while construction was ongoing I did keep the roads plowed year round but that was before the cabin was plumbed with water.  The closeure took about 1-1/2 hours with the draining/blowing of the waterlines, hotwater tank drainage, disconnection of the battery bank from the inverter and removal of the generator battery. 

The snow curl from the porch began.  The ice/snow bar on the main roof was working.

My wife relaxing while reading a book down loaded from the net on the laptop.

It appears that the closure was none too soon as the temperatures drop this morning to 12F with the forecast predicting additional snowfall.  I now look forward to an early spring.


Happy New Year and congratulations. Everything looks so beautiful and now you have music as well. Enjoy. You earned it  [cool]
The wilderness is a beautiful thing for the soul. Live free or die.


Do you go up when you've 'closed' the cabin? 

I do -- I just bring water jugs and use the Frost Free...but it's tough without running water now that I know I have it when it's warmer!


Quote from: OlJarhead on January 04, 2013, 11:25:34 PM
Do you go up when you've 'closed' the cabin? 

I do -- I just bring water jugs and use the Frost Free...but it's tough without running water now that I know I have it when it's warmer!

Eric generally I don't go up for any period of time.  Only make a maintenance trip periodically.  I did go up yesterday as I forgot I had some canned foods in the kitchen cabinet that I was afraid would freeze.  I wouldn't have made it in the truck unless I would have chained up.  So I just used the 4 wheeler which didn't have too much trouble on the ice and snow.  A little chilly at 24F riding in the open but hey it was a short trip. 

When I went up yesterday the temperature inside was a balmy 36F.  So it would have taken a good two days to heat up the wood mass and make it liveable.  Not to mention that I have to shut down the inverter and disconnect the battery bank which will drain the batteries even though the inverter is off.   That would necessitate leaving the generator operating as well.  So being somewhat of a pessimist I disconnected them as well as shut the gas off  from the bulk tank.

Maybe I will be lucky and it will be a short winter. ;)

Dog it has been worth all the effort.  The music sessions in that setting are great. Hope I can find more time this coming year to enjoy it more.   


Looking good. Kinda postcardish if you know what I mean.


With the recent Artic Blast hitting the area I thought I would go check on the cabin and change the Game Camera card.  This week the temperatures have not gotten above 25F.  This morning it was 7F.  The inside cabin temperature was 22F.  The crawlspace and basement showed 34F.

I also took a reading on the battery bank since I disconnected them on the 30th of December. I forgot to take a reading on that day but on the 13th it was 49.1  Surprising the voltage showed 48.8 volts.  The specific gravity was 1.275.  At this rate the battery bank probably will not discharge below 50% by the time it is ready to start up in a month or two.    ;D


Well it has been some time since I have updated this tread and the garage apartment addition. Constuction has virtually stopped at each.    Life has thrown me some unexpected detours.  On February 23rd my 87 year old father fell and broke his hip.  That was not life threatening but what followed is.  He has been battling kidney failure for the last couple of years.  His Kidneys had only been operating on 10% function.   With the surgery and medications associated his kidneys have now dropped to less than 5% with his creatinine level (toxins) at 5.5 mg @dl.  Anything above .6 -1.2 is normal and higher consitute renial failure.  It was his wishes not to be put on dialysis.  With his hearing loss, and the later stages of dementia he was taken home and is being cared for by my mother (80), hospice and myself.  Currently he is sleeping 23-1/2 hrs out of 24 hrs daily and virtually very little recongnizeable responses. 

But life has to continue.  I have stole a few minutes out of this hetic life to attend to some necessary normalities of my life and family.  The "rust worms" have hatched out in my 99 Ford truck. Although mechanically it is in great shape I decided that after 14 years use it was time to upgrade.  So this is what I ended up with.  It is a 2012 F-250 Powerstroke.  Used but practically new with only 9,000 miles.

Busy weekend.  I bought 4 head of cattle on Friday evening at the livestock sale.  So Saturday morning was vaccanation and hauling them.

Sunday we picked up the three pigs that are for my childrens 4-H/FFA project.  Of course we weren't quite ready  d* but managed to whip it all together and get them settled into their new home for the summer.  At 30-35# now they don't look very big but after a summer feed program their weight should increase to 280-300# by late August.

I sure hope that the last couple of months are no indication of what the rest of the summer will be. 


You have my deepest condolences on your fathers condition.I hope he does improve.

Congrats on the new truck and new additions to the farm.Those piggies and calves look pretty good there.Nice to see the kids outside being productive and active.I can't pry mine outta the house with explosives.I was tempted to try.Their mother made the mistake of buying them video games against my better judgement.


Video Games. That is easy.  They can play them for 1 hour.  You are the parents.  Then tell them to go do homework, chores, paly, etc.  No phones, tv, or computers in their bedrooms either.  They grumble, but they are not your friends, they are your children.


Nice looking kids and from I've gleaned reading nearly everything they have sufficient outside interests to keep them occupied.

My girls arw grown and on their own and we had limits on TV, video games and movies. I agree none of that stuff belongs in a bedroom, and I've never had TV in my own either. They complained a lot and would always compare their difficult lives to their friends. I'm proud to say they turned into responsible adults and now that they are grown up we are friends as well as Mom and daughters. It can be difficult to keep parenting on the parenting level and not fall into the trap of wanting to be their buds too.

Sorry for the hijack redoverfarm. Sorry to hear about your Dad. Sometimes it doesn't take much to be the straw that breaks the camel's back, as they say. Surgeries are especially hard on the elderly. All my best wishes to you and your family.

Nice truck too! Bigger than my old Nissan Frontier.  :)  But then I don't have a farm.
The personal dietary habits of people kill more frequently than firearms. Eat healthy and carry a gun.


One down and one to go.   My son graduated from High School on the 25th.  He has his graduation party at the cabin with his friends and relatives.  Could not have asked for a nicer day.  That is a good thing when you have nearly 50 people attending.  Food was served in the early afternoon and then music into the wee hours of the morning. 

Here is a picture of shear relief as he chilled out before grabbing the banjo.

Some of the young-uns taking in the entertainment from the loft area.

He is enrolled at Glenville State College with "surveying" as his major to start thsi fall.


Been sometime since my last update/post.  Since my last I had been battling an unwanted pest.  A woodpecker apparently found some type of bug in the board/batten on the gable end of the cabin.  I believe it was one that was in the soffit false rafter area.  Needless to say I wasn't able to deter him until he had done some damage.  Minor but annoying.  I had talked to a friend who is sort of in that general field in his occupation and he suggest that I hang old "CD's in that area.  I then googled some remedies and they had the same suggestions but wanted to sell something that I could make for nothing.  I rounded up a couple of CD's. some fishing line swivels, and weights and went to work.  The idea is that moving shining objects deter them.  I mounted the hanging CD "mobil" from the ridge peak of the gable end.  Just the slightest breeze makes them turn and reflect. 

As far as the damage it is all repairable but being that it is 28 feet off the ground it is not something I want to do on an extension ladder.  I will have to take the time to set up scaffolding to reach that area. 

Here is a shot of the area and damage.  I might have already posted this picture in another topic pertaining to board /batten.  Anyway here it is.

Here is a picture of the mobil.  Really low tech which I hope proves high end results.


We have this problem also!  I'll have to try your CD solution too and see if it helps.


John Raabe

Interesting idea. The CDs provide some of the movement and reflection that can make a bird apprehensive.
None of us are as smart as all of us.


Yes John I would recommend anyone with wood siding living in a wooded area to install something similar.  It was more of an aggrevation having to rebuild the damage that was done.  Well I finally got around to repairing the damage.

This is just one portion of the damage. This is a piece of trim board 1-5/8" wide and 7/8" thick was at the intersection of the wall and soffit.  It was at this location that he went into the siding.  It has been filled and the trim replaced.  Other minor damage will just be re-stained.

Took more time setting up the scaffolding than the actual repairs.  One piece at a time up 4 bucks high.

Before and after

Well I ran into somewhat of a problem.  The original stain used was Olympic oil based stain.  They have discontinued that and went with a water based.  The color is not the same although it was suppose to be. The original was put on several years ago and I am sure that it has changed but the new isn't even close to the tint.  I am prone to Oil Based.  I may have to find another manufacturer that offers a similar tint in oil base stain to recoat the siding.  This particular wall (north west facing) has taken the brunt of the weather and needs to be recoated. Other walls (4) seemed to fair better. Maybe someone on the board might have some recommendation on brands or experiences.

As I was waiting for things to dry I decided to get some more firewood in for the winter.  This 16' trailer with just loose thrown load is equivilent to just over 1 cord of wood. I have about another 1/2 cord split which I will get when the road drys up some.  Bringing this load off of a 18-20% grade grass road was a little tricky until I chained up the tractor to keep it froim Ballhooting. ;D  I wouldn't even think about using a truck to pull the trailer.

Well I lost my best friend last week.  My son Steven went off to college.  So it seems I will be working solo until he gets some breaks in his schedule.  He is going to Glenville State College where he is going to major in Land Surveying.  Seems his reputation has proceeded him.  He has an advisor who is actually in charge of their Blue Grass program.  She said I know about you we will have to get together and play some music while you are here.  He also knows another professor that he has played music with as well. I was a little worried when I took him over but when I left he shook my hand like a man not the boy I once knew so I know he will be OK.   


My father,one of my uncles,and my cousin specialized in land surveying.I was a rodman during the summers and started learn the computerized transit.Then GPS surveying come to be and now no need for a rodman.Just one man can do the work it was taking five of us to do.My father and uncle drew scaled plats by hand until CAD/CAM became an easy affordable alternative.


That's great news! I've been wondering if Steven would still be able to keep up with his musical pursuits while at school. Both for my mother and sister their musical education has probably been a bigger part of their life than their majors were. Being able to carry a tune apparently carried on the girl chromasome in my family  :D.
One of the young men that brings eggs by the house for my Tuesday night produce runs placed in clawhammer and his band placed in old time band recently, keep a lookout for "The Spring Valley Boys"  :)


Don sure wish that he would have been able to make it to Galax but too much stuff to get done before he left for college.  A fiddle player that he often plays with did place 1st there in individual and the band he gets to jam with placed 2nd there also.  Maybe next year. 


One more thing to mark off my list.  Here is the repair to the gable end that occurred earlier this year by a woodpecker.  I was able to find Cabot oil based stain basicly the same shade as the Olympic stain that was discontinued.  I had thought earlier that I would go ahead and recoat the other board & batten walls while I had the scaffolding there but after looking it has faired well and can wait until next year.  That will give me an oppurtunity to treat the sideing first for bugs.


Glad to see that worked out, even if it meant more than one trip to the store. 
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.

Jimbo Ricketts

   i read this entire thread over the last three days . i wish i had found cp threads 5 yrs earlier . what can i say about this build ? other than awsome awsome awsome . this place you have here is heirloom quality , that your grandchildren's children will enjoy . built to last and beautiful . if i had accomplished such a build i would have to make a plackard about when and whom built it so all that will visit in the future will know . i wish you would have used pex on the waterlines tho , wirsbo in particular , memory pipe is nearly indestructable as it will expand 100% . take a 2ft piece , vicegrips on each end and twist in opposite directions  until your heart is content  then put a heat gun on it and VAVAVA VOOM it springs back into place . nice build red .
no mam that's not the crack of my *$$ , its a plumbers pencil holder


Well this past weekend Dogtrot was put to the test with an extended stay from my wife's cousin and her inlaws (total of 5).  They arrived on Friday evening to a fully charged battery bank.  There stay was 5.5 days.  I am happy with the results of being that the generator had only intermittently ran for 11 hours during their entire stay.  Translated that amounted to only about $21 in propane at the current price.  I am sure this could probably be decreased even further with additional battery storage which I might consider in the future but all in all I think that was pretty good considering the useage. ;D


"Well I lost my best friend last week.  My son Steven went off to college."  ...   i love this line..  it speaks volumes about what it is to be a father and to reach the point where one can move beyond the parenting role  and begin to enjoy the next stage of a father / son relationship.    Although my son moved back to NH with his mother after finishing 9th grade,  I have been fortunate to still have a wonderful relationship with him.   No more is this apparent than when we are tackling a project together!    You have certainly been blessed..   jt


Well I went after another little project at the cabin this week and I might say against my wife's advice.  Yep down in the back again.  Happens every 6-8 months from doing something that I shouldn't have been doing. Lifting heavy objects.  Generally I have tried to be careful since my back surgery in 95 but there comes a time that you just have to do it because there is no other way or no one to help.  After resting 3-4 days it has began to heal back a little.  On to the project.

I had a couple of locust post left over from the porch construction.  I decided to put newel post and a handrail at the front steps.  I have several elderly friends/musicians that have a hard time climbing the steps without something to steady themselves with.  The post are about 10-12" diameter.  I have them dressed down and cut to length.  The holes are dug and I might say by the hardest.  The ground is more or less shale or what we call "goundhog shale".  Like a rock until exposed to the weather and pressure and it crumbles after a period of time.  Most of the digging was with a digging iron and the post hole digger was just for the dirt removal. 

I tried something new and I am not sure how effective it will be regarding rot and insect infestation.  I mixed up some solubor solution and left the post (butt end first) into a garbage can filled to the top.  That gave me about 30" of saturation.  I will set the post using ready mix in a day or so when the post dries out.  I will post some pictures of the finished project in the next couple of days.  Hope to have it done by the middle of October when the annual music/chili feed is at the cabin.