Late Friday night, the wife got an order on her Etsy site that started a flurry of emailing and order-prep. The actual tizzy-inducing-ness isn't important, except that it kept us up later than was good for a 4:30 departure the next morning. Needless to say, she didn't sleep well.
Saturday morning, we overslept - and checked email, one of which made the busy-ness and sleeplessness of the night before completely unnecessary. Blarg!
The drive up was a construction-filled, slow speed, 5 hour long-haul. Ugh.
Good news tho, while Rawlins and the Great Divide Basin have been receiving record rainfall this year, the Domestead hasn't flooded at all. Yay! This made for easy access and no mudbogging in the tiny Fit. That would NOT have ended well.
Saturday's project: tear down the Qbert wall and rebuild it flush with the rest of the perimeter wall. Something's been living behind the bricks and slowly excavating the dirt out from behind it, making it unstable. We've already lost a few smaller bricks out of it.
Turns out, there was a lot more dirt back there than we thought. Oh well, since the bricks were down, we changed the plan and decided to only remove some of the remaining dirt and create a bench seat as part of the wall.
This is where things got weird. Up until now, the weather had been sort of cooperating. It was sunny and warm, though hella windy. The sand was doing a mini-sandstorm impression for most of the morning. All of a sudden, there was thunder and clouds and - oh crap - lightening too close for comfort. Then the rain started. We mad-dashed for the car and spend 20 minutes or so reading and resting and re-hydrating.
Once the storm passed and the sun was back out (tho it was still super windy and now kind of damp and chilly), we started laying out the front part of the bench seat. Aluminum cans and ferro-cement for the win! Here are the first couple of rows:
We were planning on bringing the can row up to seat height, then gently tamping down some of the dirt behind the cans. After that, maybe add some more fill dirt and walk away until next year, letting Mother Nature pack and settle the fill for us. We had a couple other projects on deck for the weekend that were waiting in the wings.
It didn't work out that way.
Instead, right after we took these photos, the rain started again. We hid, again. The rain stopped. We got out of the car and got back to making cement and adding rows. We were almost through the final row and the last bit of cement when the wind REALLY kicked up and ice-cold rain started pelting us. We were so close to done that we sucked it up, got soaked and finished the row.
Sitting in the car after stripping off our cement covered gloves we were Wet. Cold. Grouchy. Frustrated. As we sat there, we realized that the rain wasn't stopping this time and the ground was getting soggy. Not Good. Mudbogging in a tiny car without 4WD is not a good idea. Last year we'd almost gotten the van stuck. We weren't about to risk the same thing in the little car, especially since, while we have AAA, we don't have cellphone service in the Basin. We'd be walking 6 miles in the rain to get to the highway to get help.
With that thought, we booked it off the property and back into Rawlins. Where it was warm, sunny and not very windy, of course. We'd been at the Domestead for all of 5 hours.
That evening, we sat and planned what we'd tackle on Sunday since the Qbert wall was more or less taken care of. The wife wanted to add some coverage to her kickwall and the husband was tinkering with an idea to build a dome corral from some of the spare lumber lying around.
That night, we were woken up by an amazing thunder storm that raged all night, with lightening strikes in the hills all around the campground and winds that howled and rocked our little log cabin.
The next morning, we ventured out to find big puddles and a semi-deflated tire on the Fit. After reviving the wife with coffee, the husband dealt with the tire.
After a brief discussion involving speculation about mudbogging, progress and Mr. Murphy, we said "screw it" and went home. (The drive took 6 hours due to stupid drivers, invisible construction and 40+ gusts of wind.)
So, lots of driving, not much work done and lots more rain etc. We may take another trip later in the year to drop stuff off, but probably not to get any work done until next May or so. : P