Sunday, October 24, 2010

Don't Cross That Line

Ahhhh, we arrived.

The flowers were still blooming.

We hydrated up.

There's water in that Sherry bottle, I swear.

Then Hit the happy trail. 

Some of the older trails are starting to look awesome.

Fall is definitely here.

No TRC trip would be complete without some mishap.

The pull cord broke.

But Retro Man is used to calamities and came prepared with another chain saw.

 Mmmmm.  That's a pretty big tree that needs to come down.

This video was laying on it's side, but I used VirtualDUB to rotate it.  Not sure how well it will work out, but I tried.

The sound of that tree falling was awesome.  I guess you had to be there.  Being a city slicker and all, I am easily impressed.

We got to one of the neighbors' known boundary markers (not share by us unfortunately), and measured about 100 feet in the general direction of our southeast boundary marker using this.

And while measuring Retro Man almost stepped on this.

Retro Man better stick with engine repair because he can't seem to get a grasp on the point and shoot.

I compared the snake to the diamondback at the end of this post, and I don't think it is the same.  Maybe it is a hog snake like Pure Florida blogged about today.  Or the rat snake we found last year.  What do you think?

Retro Man stood at the presumed southeast boundary marker and used the trusty compass to start our orienteering.

Thankfully we both agreed on the angle we should be shooting with the compass.  This involved finding out the magnetic declination and subtracting it from the direction in the property description.

Here's the property description once you are standing at the South East corner property marker:

Thence North 09 degrees 41 minutes 05 seconds West, 1830.63 feet to a point on the boundary .... blah, blah, blah.

I plotted the points I took in the GPS using Google.  In case you didn't know, just put lat/lon coordinates into Google separated by a comma, and your point will be displayed in Google maps.  The blue marks are the points I took yesterday.

Hmmmmm.  Looks like we're a little off on our calculations and may have blazed a bit of trail on our neighbor's property.

This morning Retro Man and I decided that we shouldn't have to account for magnetic declination, and that the direction listed in the property description is the direction we should be shooting from the corner.  Anybody have thoughts on this?

Our day ended with another 4 mile jaunt through on the neighborhood road.  We always turn around at this cattle farm.

It really is beautiful.  It used to have cows on it, but we haven't seen any in about 6 months.  It's owned by some guy in Orlando and I pray that he isn't going to develop it some day. 

Friday, October 22, 2010

Trail Blazers R Us

The last time we were trail blazing, I took GPS points every 5 feet or so and then overlaid them onto a picture of Tree Ring.

Looks like we had a little moonshine from the still before we got started, huh?  Because Tree Ring used to be part of a honest to goodness tree plantation, the trees are planted very close together.  Getting through them has been quite a challenge, and we definitely need to thin them out.

We figured we would try to first blaze a trail to the back, then across, and then up the right side to the center.  After that, we could decide whether that trail is adequate for a fire break, or whether we need to create alternate paths.

We're going up tomorrow to keep going.  The goal is to make it to the bottom right property marker, and use the compass to begin following the property line up to the clearing.  I doubt we'll get very far, but you never know.  

Retro Man thinks he knows how to use a compass, so this ought to be interesting.  I imagine there will be much yelling and gnashing of teeth, because I took orienteering too, so we're both 'experts'.

The big blob on the center-right is the large oak tree where the pop up is located.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

One Of Those Weeks

I work in the IT industry and this Clients From Hell post really made me chuckle.

"Please call me if you don't receive this email."

That's the kind of week I've had, and it's only Tuesday.

It went something like this:

Gary Larson Far Side
Hope you are having a good week :)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Shelter Gets A Head(er)

Ahhhhhh.  The Florida Winter (June through September) is over, and now we are having Chamber of Commerce weather.  It's dry and cool with blue skies and sweet smells.

On Friday, Retro Man picked up two 24 foot 2x10s and  took them to Tree Ring to put headers on the front and back row of the Shelter.  I joined him on Saturday morning.

Of course the trip couldn't start without a Polaris repair to replace the shift cable.

The Pop Up was waiting when I got there.

The tools were out.

The front header board was up.

Sorry about the picture quality.

Retro Man said he wanted to put the rear header board up before we continued our trail blazing.

This looks so much easier than it really was.  In fact, there was a moment while I was taking pictures that I thought I might be documenting Retro Man's death.  The pressure treated 2x10 was unbelievably heavy and at one point it was 50/50 whether he'd be able to push it high enough since it was slightly warped and wouldn't go into the notch at the top of the pole.

We sure are Country green beans, aren't we?

Lot's of fall flowers and neat grasses were out.

And some cool bugs too.

Uh oh.  I think this is a Pine Borer.

And after a cool 4 mile ride, we found this 3 foot snake.

After some research when we got home, we discovered it was a diamondback rattlesnake.

Now that was sobering.  Looking back on it, I guess I was a little too close. 

Next visit some rafters go up.