Author Topic: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin  (Read 957603 times)

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Offline duncanshannon

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1275 on: November 30, 2011, 10:03:33 AM »
wow. thats a ton of work!  looks really nice!
Home: Minneapolis, MN area.  Land: (no cabin yet) Spooner, WI area.  Plan: 20x34 1 1/2 Story. Experience Level: n00b. 
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1276 on: November 30, 2011, 12:23:50 PM »
Looks like a lot of log cabin material to me.  Looks good, Don.  Lots of hard work.
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Offline MountainDon

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1277 on: November 30, 2011, 03:58:21 PM »
Looks like a lot of log cabin material to me.

My handicap with that is lack of machinery to help move large logs.  That and working on the hillside.  But In the back of my mind I have been thinking of seeing about using some of the yet to be felled trees for the outhouse we want to build. I figure some shorter sections suitable for that might not be too bad.  There's also a lot of trees on forest service land that were recently cut in a thinning operation right close by. At this point it looks like those will be over wintering under the snow as the next good snow will likely close the road to them till spring. Some of those are right close to a road/trail that would make access easy.  :-\

Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

Offline Gary O

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1278 on: November 30, 2011, 05:58:11 PM »
Don, no need to apologize for the heavy breathing. Shoot, I was breathin’ heavy just watchin’ that video.
Gathering, cutting, and stacking dead falls is work work and more work. We know, and are quite thankful our land is level.
Good show, ol’ man…jolly good.
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Offline CjAl

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1279 on: December 03, 2011, 02:43:52 PM »
my back hurts just looking at that. since my back surgery all that bending just about kills me.

but that all those straight logs i would definatly be looking for uses for them. they make good porch posts.


Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1280 on: December 03, 2011, 06:22:13 PM »
Moving logs without heavy machines... In Mexico, I have watched the men rolling the logs up a plank ramp, in about 8' sections right up onto a truck.  If you could get the trailer in there, it might not be too bad.
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Offline MountainDon

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1281 on: December 21, 2011, 06:23:21 PM »
We spent 4 nights at the cabin; came back today. As per usual I always dislike leaving and returning home. We did have a good time though with burning up a good deal of the trash/slash we had piled last trip.

It snowed a lot since then. It was at least a foot, probably more but it is hard to tell as there were several sunny days with temps in the 40's and that always melts the snow some, makes it sag and look like less. Anyhow it was a snow shoe trip. It was 38 F outside when we arrived and 25 F inside. So while we waited for the wood stove to get going good we opened the windows in an attempt to warm up quicker.  ;D

The gallon jugs of water we left inside were frozen solid so it was good and cold for a lengthy period. During the snow two weeks ago the temp did drop to a low of -2 F for a few hours. Lots of time spent in the 20's as per the weather log. We thawed several in the big pot on the wood stove.

We had mostly cloudy weather with only partly sunny one day. Not good for battery charging when combined with the shortest days of the year. But we made out okay. So we burned trash wood piles and got rid of a lot. We read some, walked around a little, baked some bread, ate, napped, read some more and generally relaxed. It's really cool being there in the trees and snow, feeling like there's not another soul for miles. Seeing the various animal tracks; there were lots of deer and elk tracks about in the fresh snow, but all we saw were their tracks. Rabbit tracks too. It was so quiet at times all I could hear was my tinnitus.

Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

Offline Whitlock

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1282 on: January 15, 2012, 08:56:37 AM »
Wow you have done a lot.
The place looks wonderful and I love some of the things you have done to the place.
It looks like it grew there it just fits right in with the forest.
Like the vents for the frige wonderful idea.


Later,W
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Offline PEG688

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1283 on: January 15, 2012, 11:25:09 AM »
Nice work Mtn D and Karen!!  Lots of WORK In fact!!  What do you do to relax ;)
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Offline MountainDon

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1284 on: January 15, 2012, 08:05:32 PM »
What do you do to relax ;)

Go to the cabin, get out of the suburbs. And work some.  ;D  It feels good doing that. Plus we always take a book along.

I'm chomping at the bit right now, but fear that my pulled muscle will not be ready for snow shoeing this weekend. Karen will likely go up and burn a pile or two of trash/slash. I'll get to see the veideo I guess.   >:(   

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Offline MountainKaren

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« Reply #1285 on: January 25, 2012, 06:24:47 AM »
...IN THE MOUNTAINS

(Last) Saturday morning I packed my backpack with a good book, fresh fruit and toiletries, kissed and hugged Don goodbye and drove to the mountains. The drive was other-worldly spectacular. The white rock of White Mesa and the red rock of the Jemez Pueblo area were brilliant against the blue sky and in the bright sun. There was no snow until 7500 feet and even the mountain tops and sides facing south were bare of snow. Forest Road 10 was dry until the bridge at the meadow. Then it was wet and muddy. Los Griegos Road was plowed up to the last fork; then it was snow covered and somewhat slippery :( . I pulled into Barbara and Ronald’s driveway; Barbara came out and moved their two vehicles to make room for my jeep. Barbara and Ronald are wonderful people and it is always nice to visit with them. Today I set off quickly with backpack, snowshoes, and poles. Dogs and deer had broken a path for the first quarter mile. Our December snowshoe track was mostly gone. The view to the northwest was breathtaking.

My new backpack (Christmas gift from Jason) was very comfortable with its hip belt and locking chest strap. Upon reaching the water tank road, I was extra warm; I paused to open my jacket, remove gloves and drink lots of water. The snow on the road was deep in spots and was more difficult, requiring frequent brief rest stops (taking in the wondrous views, of course). The Trujillo gate was a welcome sight; the sight of our steep hill…not so much :(   Twenty steps, take a rest, twenty steps, take a rest, so on and so forth until I reached the top…YEAH! The remaining flat stretch was mostly crusted, so I didn’t sink in and it was easy.

THE CABIN.  I unlocked the power supply door and flipped the two switches for solar power and unlocked the shed (potty). Inside the cabin it was 34 degrees (40 degrees outside). I emptied ashes from the woodstove and built a fire; turned on the propane heater (5th click), lit the stove and heated water for tea, lit the oven and mixed up some cornbread. I pulled a pipe filled with canned goods from the cold cellar and emptied it in the cabin. I selected canned chicken and mixed it with mayonnaise from home and with diced celery and green onion (prepared by my loving husband that morning). I ate it with rice cakes :( and hot green tea.

Not feeling sleepy I walked down our south slope (nearly bare of snow) and uncovered a burn pile. The very old tarp tore to shreds as I removed it and all the snow on top. I poured some gas/oil on the pile and lit it with the propane torch. First try died out, second try took off. I sat by the fire and had warm cornbread and green tea :). I added to the pile from a huge covered pile 30 feet away. At 2:30 I went to the cabin for a 60 minute siesta (nap). I returned to the burning fire at 3:45, added more wood and drank a tiny bottle of Bailey’s Irish Cream. As dusk began to settle in, the tree tops swayed in the breeze. I was not swaying :), but I was as happy as a pig in mud.

5PM I mixed up some Kraft Macaroni & Cheese and heated canned beans. With cornbread it was a decent meal. I kept the fire going in the woodstove; it was 75 degrees in the cabin and 35 degrees outside. At 8PM it rained briefly. Over night the propane heater was off and the wood fire died; it snowed about an inch and the winds howled and gusted now and then. I awoke at 7AM to 60 degrees in the cabin and 20 degrees outside. I built a fire, turned up the heater and turned on the oven (350). I made Pamela’s Fudgiest Brownies (my favorite) :).  For breakfast I had Maple Raisin Instant Oatmeal. From 7-9AM the clouds were dense, very light snow fell, and high wind gusts blew the snow across the ground. At 9AM the clouds thinned and bright blue sky revealed Redondo Peak once again. At 9:30 I enjoyed a banana, apple, orange, sunflower seed smoothie with a Fudge Brownie :).

At 10AM I donned snow jacket, boots, gaiters and poles and went for a 30 minute walk. “What a difference a day makes”; today all the slopes are glistening white. Yesterday’s burn spot is a 2 foot diameter warm spot in the snow. I took a bucket of pine needles (from barrel),the torch and fuel over to Casey’s where we had only one pile left covered  and ready to burn. Low and behold, it had been burned (sometime between December 20th and now). This is a good sign, as Casey doesn’t believe in burning tree tops/debris to thin the forest. It was probably his brother. I phoned Don to tell him the good news and he had some good news too. A couple was coming to look at the two desks we have listed on Craigslist.

I am enjoying reading “Harold”, an autobiography of Hal Holbrook. I’m enjoying the solitude, quiet and beauty. Aside from the living trees, a single squirrel hopped across the snow to say ”hello”. There are deer/elk tracks in the snow; none moseyed by to “say hello”.

At 11AM it is 26 degrees outside. At noon the winter sun is pouring in the south window illuminating the amber, green and blue glass objects and adding its warmth to the cozy feel of the cabin. The north window is a perfect snapshot of mountain, blue sky, small clouds, green trees and snow covered ground, frozen in time. The whole universe conspired for billions of years to give “me” this view of perfect beauty.

After a lunch of leftovers and a one hour nap, I took fuel and torch to yesterday’s burn spot. On that spot I built a new burn pile (from debris covered with plastic 30 feet away), lit it, and continued to feed the fire for an hour.

At 3PM I had a snack of canned pears and pistachio nuts; I watched a PBS show about Custer. At 5PM I went to the burn spot and raked the unburned logs into a pile to finish burning. For supper I had canned roast beef in gravy and leftover mac & cheese, with Fudge Brownie for desert :).

I spent the evening reading and watching a little TV. Lights out at 9PM…very tired.

I woke up at 7AM feeling that the cabin was cooler then 60 degrees; it was 56 degrees. I donned my winter jacket and made a fire. The propane heater had shut down when the propane ran out. I went outside to the tanks and opened up the second tank (should’ve been open already); if it had been open the “automatic change over” system would have kept the flow going. I was then able to heat water for tea. After breakfast of oatmeal and tea, I packed my backpack, locked the solar power, the shed and the cabin.

The snowshoe down to the jeep was a treat. The snow was sparkling “diamonds”, the sky bright blue, the birds chirped in the distance, and a woodpecker knocked on a tree close by; I stopped often to take in the beauty. I could see five ridges in succession to the northeast.

At Barbara and Ron’s, the jeep started easily. I put it in low 4WD and transmission low 2 to go down snowy Los Griegos Road; FR 10 was snow packed this time. Hwy 4 was clear and just as breathtaking in reverse direction; I stopped at the grocery/subway store between Jemez Springs and Jemez Pueblo to get a sub for lunch. I arrived home just past noon. Don and I were very happy to see one another. We talked about my adventure and our plans to do the next one together. It was a wonderful two and a half days. The only thing that would’ve made it more wonderful would be to have shared it with the “love of my life” – Don.

Don and I conspired and worked hard the past six years to make this tiny piece of “heaven on earth”. I hope we can enjoy it for many more years together. After we are gone, I hope it will be enjoyed by many others. It is a great privilege to enjoy the beauty of the Jemez Mountains and in the not too distant future it will be a privilege to have our dust/atoms mingle with those of the Jemez Mountains.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2012, 08:53:35 AM by MountainKaren »

Offline rick91351

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1286 on: January 25, 2012, 06:54:24 AM »
Thanks MountainKaren I really enjoyed the read. 
Proverbs 24:3-5 Through wisdom is an house builded; an by understanding it is established.  4 And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.  5 A wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.

Offline Redoverfarm

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1287 on: January 25, 2012, 07:33:23 AM »
Despite some little set backs it sounds as if you had an enjoyable weekend.  I know that Don was probably biting at the bit to go up. ;D

Offline John Raabe

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1288 on: January 25, 2012, 07:34:31 AM »
Thanks for sharing your cabin and the winter solitude with us all. Feels like a real visit.
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Offline hpinson

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1289 on: January 25, 2012, 10:10:19 AM »
That was a wonderful account. Thank you!

Offline Gary O

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1290 on: January 25, 2012, 12:27:04 PM »
 Excellent

 You might consider squeezing in a post or two between your two/three year hiatuses…..

It really is good to get a glimpse of the soft side of Don and to hear from who makes him complete.

Thank you

Gary O’
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Offline rick91351

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1291 on: January 25, 2012, 12:49:31 PM »
Excellent

 You might consider squeezing in a post or two between your two/three year hiatuses…..

It really is good to get a glimpse of the soft side of Don and to hear from who makes him complete.

Thank you

Gary O’

To that I raise my coffee and say a hearty, 'HERE HERE!'
Proverbs 24:3-5 Through wisdom is an house builded; an by understanding it is established.  4 And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.  5 A wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.

Offline ajbremer

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1292 on: January 25, 2012, 02:04:31 PM »
Thank you for sharing. It made me feel as though I was there, I even got kinda cold.
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Offline Sassy

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1293 on: January 25, 2012, 03:21:47 PM »
Was imagining myself there & seeing what you were seeing while reading your post, MtnKaren - idyllic...  thanks for sharing!  I agree w/the others, you'll have to do it more often  :)
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Offline OlJarhead

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1294 on: January 26, 2012, 03:15:47 PM »
MountainKaren I can envision all of that!  Thanks for sharing.  Perhaps also being a cabin owner helps as I can practically smell the pine forest and feel the cold breeze as I walk up to our cabin door and unlock it after the drive 'home' to our cabin.

I can't wait until next weekend when my wife and I head up there!  [cool]


Offline altaoaks

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1295 on: January 29, 2012, 04:53:11 PM »
Mountainkaren, what a wonderful peak into your lone trip to the cabin, you are a very talanted writer.  I could feel the uphill trek through the snow, the feel of the carved out deer trail, the cold of the cabin, the heat and smell of the fire, and the absolute peace and quiet!  I know, though, that Don was feeling regret at being left behind!  Heres a virtual toast to the two of you together next trip up!

Offline Carla_M

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1296 on: February 02, 2012, 06:43:32 AM »
Karen, I love your place in the mountains and I love your story about your solo trip. That is a well crafted adventure story! I can understand why you would want to make the effort to snow shoe there. It is beautiful up there! And you are a confident, self reliant woman with a real can do attitude. No wonder Don loves you as he does!  [cool]  I followed your story of your weekend with great interest and a certain degree of jealousy!    :)  If I can ever visit I'll bring a bottle of Bailey's, maybe two.  c*

It’s breathtakingly beautiful. How did you get so lucky to have such a view? Most cabins and homes in the Jemez do not have any view of the premiere mountain, Redondo and there you are with a view of it’s best side with the sacred eagle visible. You are a lucky woman in many ways.
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Offline MountainDon

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1297 on: March 16, 2012, 07:50:59 PM »
We spent the last week at Pine Ridge!

It was great to be there. We did have the hardest, most physically demanding snow show trip up though. We ran into several, maybe 7 or 8 spots with lots of deep powder snow. Many were sheltered from direct sun and had no crust at all. The faithful MSR's sunk deep even with the long tails in place. We sunk calf to knee depth, sometimes for only 10 steps or so. However, as luck would have it one of the places was on the steep hill just inside the gate. Two thirds of the hill was a struggle. It was tiring, but funny how quickly the strain of it passed once we reached the cabin.  :)   Our normal time "in" runs about 55 minutes; this time it was 70 minutes.


When we arrived there was snow covering all of the south slope. North side of the cabin had several feet. The south side was almost bare. The sun was shining brightly and the temperature reached 54 F. The snow on the south slopes was getting patchy by the end of Monday.

Note: the snow bar on the south side of the roof worked as planned and hoped for. The north side with no snow bar had ample evidence that snow slides off a 5/12 pitch roof quite easily.


No signs of amy game. I suspect they have found places with snow snow for the winter.


The Food Tubes, in ground freeze protected canned food storage continued to protect the food placed there from freezing.


We burned some more slash on the south east corner of the property and thinned out a couple more trees. We're very happy with the thinning results in that area. (In late fall / early winter we cut and burned a lot there as previously reported.) Not only does it look better but with the last tree I felled we can now see the SE corner survey marker (T-post at the marker with lots of  fluorescent orange and green ribbons). We can actually stand near the bottom of the hollow and see the SE marker, then turn 180 degrees and see the NE marker. We found our estimated boundary line was off as much as 6 to 10 feet where the trees used to be super dense. Error not in our favor. So that was productive.

Weather was sunny with the usual NM bright blue skies. Lows fell to 32 to 34 F overnight while the daytime highs were 53 to 55 F.


We bit off another acre and a half to thin out. There's lots of deadfall, standing dead and very small diameter trash trees. All the usual suspects to be dealt with and of course on a slope. We started working at it, putting in 12 or so people-hours. Lots more to come.   :D  This is not on our land, but the neighbor to the west. It's a fire waiting to happen. The elderly lady has given us carte blanche to do as we have done on our acreage. Since that is the direction the prevailing winds come from I'd be happy to do it for free; it's self preservation. We're trading some things and will open up another access route/exit if ever needed. I have a batch of saw chains I need to sharpen.   :D


The snow shoe trip back out was easier. Downhill for one thing; downhill is always easier.  ;D  And early morning so we had lots of frozen crust to walk on.

Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

Offline ajbremer

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1298 on: March 17, 2012, 01:21:14 AM »
Wow MD, you guys are real adventurers and you both must be in great shape.

Snow shoeing is something I would love to try. The closest thing I got to that was sled dogging when I lived in New Hampshire near the Vermont border in the late 80's - even got into sled dog racing a little.

I see your clearing land and burning brush often? That is something I have to do. I have a lot adjacent to my main build lot that is a ditch where I've put all the slash and large cut down trees. I have to burn it all soon.

By the way, how far is your snow shoe trek?
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Offline rick91351

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Re: My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin
« Reply #1299 on: March 17, 2012, 05:02:35 AM »
I am so glad your food storage is working as 'advertised'.  I had real good feelings about that when you did it.  That is a very practical lesson learned for people that want to enjoy their remote cabins and houses in the winter time.  Plus could be put to good use in the summer time as well.  (If shelf and storage space is a premium.) 

One thing about it your snow shoeing really gives good cause that you do guys not get soft and out of shape in a winter time.  Like some of us! -  :(  ( ME ).  I can only speak for myself!

I am thinking that our shop roof is a 5/12 metal.  It is a shed roof with the back facing east.  It gets a good full length southern sun exposure in the afternoon. It sheds snow very well, in fact some of it shoots shoots off of there so good you would not want to be close at all!  Especially when the old snow has a good crust.  WOW!!
Proverbs 24:3-5 Through wisdom is an house builded; an by understanding it is established.  4 And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.  5 A wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.