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Maine Nature News

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Maine Nature News

Important Notice

The Maine Legislature has banned the bringing of firewood into Maine.
( Sec. 1. 12 MRSA § 8307)
    Also the practice of transporting firewood for a distance of more than 50 miles from home, even within the state is discouraged.
This is due to the threat of invasive insects that are transported in the firewood.
     Out of respect for the landowner and the north woods, we no longer allow firewood to be brought into camp in order to protect the forest from invasive insects.
     We do have firewood for sale at the office. For more information please click on the link.



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"What's happening in these here parts of Maine"...
June 10, 2017

Here we go again!  I am going to try to get a posting done before it becomes so long that people are sure that I have expired.

As you read along, you will find an entry that I wrote last November and forgot to post.  That happens when you have too many birthdays I reckon.

But I am here now and will fill you in on a couple of things that have been happening up here at the pond.

My right hand helper man (And Jed is now a full grown man, although I am not sure just when that happened!) is now working out on construction as a welder, so all the heavy crap I am now dealing with by myself.  Well, me and tractors and such, after all, I am still mentally sound enough for the most part to make smart decisions!

He is missed and he sure misses being here to help me with my projects.  Every phone call or text he reminds me that he wishes he were here to help out.  I reckon that we are fortunate to have the technology of today so that we can keep in touch pretty much daily rather than writing letters and sending them off by postal mail. (Of course fishing is also mentioned so I am not which is a higher priority!)

We have most of the things done that require doing to get things up and running!  I work on the cabins and campsites to keep moving the process along.

I did lose one building last winter, late in the season.  The snow load just got to be more that what it could stand and down it came.  Clean up of that is mostly done and rebuilding is on the list.  At least it was not one of the cabins or a building that would put a crimp in operations.

I decided to clean up a couple of other buildings while I was in the process of cleaning up that one.  (Maureen said I was all in practice and may as well just keep on going!)

Stage one of the clean up is done and I am picking away at the final stages.  Just dressing up the spots a bit for aesthetics and usability.  It may take a bit, but I have no idea what I want to do in those spots so there is not any sense in doing something and then having to go and do it all over again.  (And besides, until I make up my mind I can continue to think on it and go fishing instead.)

Speaking of fishing, I have managed to get out a few times with some pretty good luck!  I think I have been out 4 or 5 trips and I am up to 54 fish thus far.  Not bad for an old hermit with a bum shoulder to fly cast with! 

The first couple of trips out were a bit slow, I think that the fishing is late this year for some reason.  The last 2 times I went out I caught 17 one night and 21 the next night.  I have started to squeeze the barb down on my flies and that slows the number that I get up to the kayak to release, but truly, that works for me.  If I do not have to handle them then so much the better for the fish.

The night that I got 17 should have been a higher number of fish.  But me being the sort of guy that I am, when I heard a moose walking along the edge of the pond grunting I had to go check it out.  I started grunting back, carrying on a conversation with it.  It sounded lonely and I figured that I would at least provide some company, even if it was only conversation.  I am not exactly sure what I said, but the moose stood there talking back.  I got up pretty close before it realized that I was not another moose, but some old hermit that was not all that great at moose talk.

It was still worth taking the time to enjoy the moose company though.  After all, why live in these woods and not take the time to enjoy any of what it has to offer!

I was talking with someone the other day and they asked me if I had hobbies or went on vacation.  I told them that I could not see any sense in going on vacation as I have people from all over the world coming to stay here!  If it is that good why would I want to go anyplace else!

I surmise that this post will reaffirm that the hermit is still alive and kicking.  I will try to stay more up to date on my posts but, if the fish are rising or there is someone who wants to sit around the campfire and hear stories in person I figure that I will just do that and write the posts when it is raining or snowing. 


February 8, 2015

Another season is under my belt!  (Well almost at least, I still have a bit of closing up to finish the season) I have been cutting and splitting wood in between regular closing up duties.  Trying to get some things taken care of that makes life simpler during the busy season as well.  It has taken me a number of years to get it figured out how to best approach the tasks that need to be completed.  (Maybe it is just that it takes longer for me to get them done and I have to figure out a simpler way to do them to get all of the tasks done!)

This year I met some more fantastic people who wanted to experience the peace and quiet of Frost Pond in T3 R11 WELS, Maine (for those who have forgotten or never knew, WELS stands for "west of the easterly line of the state".  Must have been a whole bunch of educated folks sitting in Augusta (Well probably Massachusetts back then) to come up with that one, although in all fairness, back when the townships were laid out we didn't have satellite maps and google earth!)

I always enjoy it when I am able to visit with the guests and give them the real scoop on things up here in this neck of the woods.  It is amazing to talk to international guests and hear about what the rest of the world is like.  My guests from the Netherlands enjoyed a ride to see a couple of moose that I was able to find in my secret spot for moose viewing.  An evening at the official Frost Pond campfire with them was a lesson for me in world culture and also added to my education. 

Even though this year turned out to be a "not so good" year for partridge I had a number of people hunting for them.  It is strange as we had a nice dry spring without the rain that can cause havoc on the chicks once they are too big to all get under the mother in a rainy spell.  I had one young couple and their faithful canine here who was beginning to think that partridge (Grouse for wing shooters) were simply a myth!  Thankfully before they had to head back home they were able to connect with one of them for a very tasty treat!

I am looking forward to next season to see where my guests will arrive from!

The fishing this summer kept me occupied most evenings that the wind was not blowing. (And even a few evenings that it was!)  I mostly fished dry flies as I find that the most exciting and enjoyable.  There is nothing like having a fish grab your fly that is sitting on top of the water where you can see it all happen.

There were nights out on the pond that I would catch 20 or more fish.  I was both pleased and baffled about the number of small fish that I caught.  They were smaller than any of the stocked fish would be, which indicates that there is a very successful breeding population here in the pond now!

The stocking has been cut back for the past several years, and may have to be cut back more to allow the natural fish to grow and do its own population thing.  I foresee the day that stocking will not be necessary or even desired at the pond!  (I am not a biologist mind you, but I have been around for a few years and have a pretty good insight on a couple of things that go on in the woods!)

I suppose I have to relate a couple of my "hermit" doings that did not turn out exactly  as was planned.  I'm not sure planned is the correct terminology as these were regular everyday things that require no planning for a hermit of my capabilities.

It was the last week of June when I received a lesson that I thought might do me in and be the end of all my hermit episodes.
I decide to go out fishing as the fish were rising like crazy.  I have done this so many times that it was like drinking water, you just do it without any thought whatsoever.  Maureen had taking me shopping last fall for one of those fishing kayaks.  It is the greatest thing to fish out of that you have ever seen.  There is this nice comfortable seat that is like your favorite recliner to sit in while you are out there. 

This particular kayak is designed to have an electric trolling motor that fits in the middle of the floor.  It is an option, and a very expensive option.  Now me being the crafty hermit that I am figured that I could just stick a trolling motor on a homemade bracket and save lots of money!  It works very well too!  I fished all last fall right up into November and I caught a bunch of fish.  Even the days that were not productive (Like the entire month of November.) it was such a pleasure to be out on the pond in this watercraft.  No noise, I could hear as much as is possible with my deafness and it was so comfortable.

Now this day in June as I pushed off from shore, the fish were rising right out from the launch area.  I managed to catch one before I even got the motor tilted down into the water.  I just paddled out to where they were rising and started fishing.  I could hear this big one splashing around in the same spot down the pond a bit, so I really wanted to see if I could land that one.  (I like catching big fish if possible as I can almost always catch smaller fish.)

My right shoulder gives me issues from time to time, something to do with too many birthdays or something like that, and I was not able to get the motor pushed down far enough to unlock it.  I wish you to understand that this kayak is made to stand up in if you so desire and it is very stable.  I have stood up a number of times and always stand up to paddle it out when launching from the dock area. 

I was listening to that big fish and getting more and more excited as it was not cruising, just sort of staying in one place feeding.  Those are the easiest ones to catch and I really wanted to see just how big it was.  I tried once again to get the motor down so I could get to where this fish was feeding and I figured that all I had to so was turn around so I could use both arms to push down the motor and the lock button.
I twisted around in the seat to reach the motor with both hands and the next thing I knew I was breathing water.  I have never tipped over so fast in my life, it was like, right now!

My fly rod was sinking and I caught the line just as the tip went out of reach.  I hauled it back up and laid it on the bottom of the kayak as best I could.  My phone was not in a water proof case and it was in my shirt pocket absorbing water like crazy.  (That was just a bit expensive to replace and it did not help that I clicked on the wrong button and got a more expensive version!)

I tell my guests to wear their life jackets, especially those who are not in watercraft very often, as I know that they can and do tip over or tip and throw you out.  (I managed to get thrown out and it still tipped over.)  I have been in boats ever since I can remember, and for the past 50 years have worn my PFD only when the water temperature is cold.

That has changed, I now wear it when I am in a boat.  I never realized just how hard it is to swim while fully clothed and pushing a kayak that is upside down.  I could not get it right side up as I could not touch bottom and with the motor under water and the battery strapped in this thing was just too heavy.

I was not worried about drowning as I could have just hung on to it until someone came along to rescue me.  There were people fishing and trolling past, but by the time they got close enough to be any help I was so out of breath that I could not even yell for assistance.  I kept struggling to get to shore and I figured that I would have a heart attack before I ever got there.

At one point I realized that I was not making headway for all of the effort I was putting in to kicking and pushing.  That is when I realized that the anchor was on bottom and I really did not have enough strength to move the kayak any further with the anchor holding tight to the bottom of the pond!

I had to pull the kayak back to the anchor and try to lift it up.  (Have you ever tried to pull up an anchor when you are in the water with it and you cannot touch bottom?)  Once I got back to where it was a straight lift I managed to grasp the rope and lift it up, then hold the rope against the kayak time after time until I had it out of the water and on the bottom of the kayak.  (Thank goodness it is a flat bottom one or I would have probably got hit in the head with it or had the rope wrap around my foot and drag me to bottom.)

Kicking and pushing once again I started making it closer to shore until my feet could touch.  What a relief that was. Although by then my heart was beating so hard and breaths were coming in ragged gasps that I thought, at least they would find me on shore, expired!

I had to tip the kayak right side up which proved to be a project, with the battery strapped in and the motor still under water.  The rocks near the shore were very slippery and I kept falling over, losing my grip on the kayak and in general not making much headway.  The reason I needed it upright so fast was my paddle was drifting down the pond.  (It is strange what you think is important when you are stressed out!)

I finally managed to get it right side up and pushed it out so that I could head after my prized paddle.  (I did in fact put on my life jacket which had been stored in one of the waterproof compartments, before heading back out on the pond.  I knew for certain another trip into the pond at that point would mean that there might be a few folks who would miss my smiling face on a permanent basis.)

I dragged the kayak to shore and parked it for a few days while I struggled with ordering the new and improved phone and getting as much of my information back into it as I could find. (I purchased a waterproof case as well, but the phone stays in the house when I am in the kayak!  My favorite Leatherman multi tool now serves as a meeting place for the trout and crayfish.  (Meet me at the place where the old guy tipped over they say to each other when planning a get together. (Where the shiny thing lies on the bottom of the pond!)

Seriously folks, I cannot stress just how important it is to be safe and to wear your PFD when on the water.  I will now practice what I preach.  Had this been in the spring of the year or when out fishing in November I most likely would not be here writing this journal.  Things like this happen too fast to plan for, trust me!

My second episode of stupid hermit tricks involved humming birds and spiders.  It was humming bird season and they needed the feeder filled.  Me being such a nice guy, I always prepare them the delectable concoction that they desire. 

This particular day I had made a nice big batch for them and was in the process of putting the feeders back up so they could stop scolding me and start eating.

I had hung the feeder and was headed back to the kitchen when Murphy's law intervened.  (I reckon you can search that law on the info web if you are not familiar with it, but by the time you are done reading this you will have a general idea of what that law is.)

For some reason this year was a bumper year for spiders, or at least spider webs!  I was heading towards the drive way when I got wrapped up in the darn things.  They did not have spiders attached, but my face and arms were just covered with them.  None of those little sissy webs either, these were the diameter of 100 pound (45 kilos) monofilament fishing line, and about the same strength!

I was grabbing handfuls of them and peeling them from my arms and face and not exactly paying attention to where I was going down over the rocks.  (Note to self, always watch where you are putting your feet when descending over rocks, and probably ascending too!)

My foot landed on one that was not flat and my ankle and foot sort of landed sideways instead of flat.  As I am such an agile guy I managed to keep hopping with only momentary contact with the now "bum" foot to keep me headed forward rather than falling down.  I was gaining speed and headed towards the rock retaining wall with the grape vines.  I thought that perhaps the sudden stop might be more painful than the foot was, but I was still hopping in that direction and still gaining speed.

I got my arms stretched out to prepare my complete cessation of movement at the rock wall but was mildly surprised that the couple of remaining spider webs were at the end of their length and gently slowed me to a reasonable speed just at impact.  (At least that is what I figure must have happened as I did not end up with a broken arm or wrist!)

I hobbled around for the next few hours and mildly cursed my decision to feed humming birds as I would now have to forget my weekend, once in a lifetime parachute jump.  (They said "no way" with a bum foot can you jump out of an airplane with a parachute. I hope they did not think that they could convince me to jump out not wearing one!)

I iced the foot a couple of times to keep it from swelling up, but that did not stop it from turning all black and blue and a few other colors that I am not able to describe.  At least it was only the outside edge of the foot so I could still get around pretty well!

My next stupid trick a few days later was a direct result of being considerate of my big rugged son Jed.  He was up to camp for the weekend and wanted a day to do some things around his house before he headed back down south to work for the week.  He offered to help me change out the generator back-end but I told him that the old man was still able to do a few things! He had helped me remove the back-end the previous week and I had made a trip to Bangor to get a new one to install.

I sent him away with a heartfelt wish to enjoy his day at home and I went at it myself.  I got the new back-end on the generator and fired it up to start producing a few kilowatts of electricity.  (Remember the Murphy law thing?)  I flipped all the switches to breathe life and power into the beast, and nothing.  Oh, the motor ran just fine, but there was not a lick of power coming out the wires.  Being as I was not in need of reducing the amount of diesel fuel in the tank without getting a few kilowatts of power I shut her down and scratched my head about what to do next.

I drove out and called the dealer and got all of the tips of what I might do in order to make it work and tried those to no good end result.  As this was a new unit, I figured that a trip to Bangor with it was in order.    I would have to remove it and put it in the truck and head to Bangor after all.

I got everything all set up to remove it and started disconnecting things that would not be making the trip to town.  This unit weighs in at about 600 pounds or so and that requires the imagination of a real smart thinking hermit to get it in the truck.

Picking it up was out of the question, I was clever enough to figure that out.  (I was the one who installed it in 2010 and I knew that it had not lost any weight as I feed it plenty of fuel, it almost never goes hungry)

A bit of rigging up and I was ready to start the process.  I had put a couple of 2x4's together and positioned them over the generator.  (One end in a hole I had made when I originally installed it and the other end out through the window, which was about a foot lower than the hole.

You would have to actually see the set up to appreciate the full genius of my rigging, but trust me it was a matter of using algebra, geometry and physics all rolled into one.  (Except I have been out of school way too long to recall all the rules of that stuff!)  I was proud of myself, the old guy doing it all by himself, no young whipper snapper telling dad how it might be better to do it a bit different.

The chain that I had around the 2x4's to attach the come-a-long to kept sliding and making things move a little at a time.  (The wrong things, I came to realize in short order.)After several attempts my perseverance kicked in (I think Maureen calls it stubbornness at times) and I made up my mind that the damn thing would get on the floor so I could put it in the truck!

I managed to get it just raised off the mount when the 2x4's kicked out.  My left arm was directly under them and they smacked the top of my arm in good shape.  Geez, the blood ran and everything, but it was not deep so I figured no problem.  I put things back together and started over once again.  I finally got it off the mount and started to swing it out towards the floor when the chain slipped on them darn tilted 2x4's again.  The entire unit tilted and landed on my foot.  (The same foot that the humming birds and spiders had caused several days before to turn funny colors and that I was still limping around on.)

A quick couple of cranks on the come-a-long and I had it back off my foot.  I felt so fortunate that it landed on the opposite side of the foot that was black and blue that I just smiled and thanked the good Lord.  I hardly limped any extra from that stupid maneuver, life was good!

I got it loaded into the truck and took it to Bangor and they unloaded it and fired it up.  Yup, still not any power coming from it.  (I hate it when things fix themselves by way of a simple ride down a bumpy road because you just know that the bumpy ride back will put you back to square one!)  After removing the cover the guy said, "Oh, they wired the voltage regulator up backwards".  Brand new and I have to beat myself half to death and haul the thing 120 miles (193 kilometers) because someone wired the thing up wrong.  It burned out the regulator but they happened to have a new one on the shelf so it got repaired and I headed back to the woods.

Putting the thing back in was as easy as could be.  I screwed the 2x4's down good and cranked the thing right into place.  Wired it up and like magic, electricity stated flowing to the battery bank so that the guests could take showers and I could take reservations once again!  If I had not been so quick to send Jed off home we would have had it done in half the time and I would not have gotten this big bulge on my arm and my foot would not be turning black on the opposite side!  Several days later I noticed that the bottom of my arm was about the same color as my foot.  It sure must have been a good hard smack to turn it black on the bottom of my arm.  I was just happy when the bulge went down and quit hurting!

Life is always an adventure up here for the most part.  Hardly ever a dull moment for me, and if I do get bored I set myself down and write something in my journal page.  (You can tell by the number of entries whether or not I am bored!)

After Jed got done working down in southern Maine for the summer we decided to tackle a couple of bigger jobs that I just had not been able to find the time to do.

One of the cabins was in need of a porch update and the cabin really needed to be leveled once again.  I had some 6x6 timbers 24 feet long sawed out this spring for just that purpose.  We removed the rotted material from the porch and found a broken carrying timber across the front of the cabin.  After putting lag screws into a couple of 2x6 planks and screwing them to the logs so the front wall would not kick out, we were ready to start the project moving forward.  One of the first orders of business was to brace the cabin against a large tree so that the entire thing could not come crashing to the ground.  The whole front of the cabin needed to be jacked back towards the office a distance of 8 to 10 inches. (The rear of the cabin had not moved for some reason.)

It was a slow process and we found more rotted carrying timbers on the other end which needed to be replaced before we could even start to level it.  Now you may not realize it but, the old timers who built things up here in the woods did not ever (As near as I can tell anyway) use a level, square or tape measure!  (I have one building that is 20 feet wide at the front and 22 feet wide at the back.)  The cabin is level but the floor still has minor hills and valleys.  The good news is that both doors open and close and the windows all slide as originally intended!  (And one can only hope that everything still works after the frost moves things around this winter.)

I almost hurt myself stepping in through the main door as we had reinforced the floor under that spot. (It always had a bit of "give" when you stepped there.) I cannot even begin to explain how this cabin is constructed, but I assure you that even though I am not a carpenter, I have talked to one or two in my life.  (I do not think that whoever built that cabin had even talked to one, ever!)  That being said, the buildings that have been built using crooked and different diameter logs and rough sawn lumber are still standing after all these years so those guys at least had that part of it figured out!

Jed wanted to do something with the landing that you use to go into the cabin so we changed the direction of it and he built some nice landscaped steps to get upon it!  He did a fantastic job figuring it all out and putting it all together. I just hung around and gave him a few pointers and had a couple of cans of Diet Coke! We put about a week and a half of actual work days (This did not include my thinking time.) into that project because of all the rotted materials that we ended up replacing.

We then had another cabin to level in order to stop things from rolling to one or two opposite directions when something landed on the floor.  It is amazing how bad it hurts when a can of peas gets knocked off the table and rolls across the floor with such speed, and it crashes into your foot.  (Even if your foot is not already black and blue!)

This cabin was setting so low to the ground that we could not get any of the jacks under it without digging a hole to set them in, even the newly purchased low profile jack would not fit under in most places.  With a bit of digging and by using my garage floor jack we managed to get the outside edges up in the air enough so that we could use the regular height jacks to finish the job.

After we got the outside edges up it was time for the lad to do the honorable thing and tell dad that he would crawl under to jack the middle.  (I graciously and quickly went and got my coveralls for him to use while he was under there.)

He would jack and place blocking and I would keep checking things with the level to see how we were progressing.  As I mentioned, none of these older cabins can ever be actually level, just sort of level!  (The can of peas may still roll, but at least they will not be travelling at Warp Speed!)  The door opens all the way now and I have been eyeballing the porch on that cabin for a future project as well!

Next year I will tackle another cabin or two for a leveling detail if all goes according to plan!

I had to do a bit of ditching on the hill to try to get the water out of the road.  This spring I lost my trailer through the road because of the way the water was sitting and running through the road bed.  (The tractor was on the trailer and I had to get that off in order to pull the truck through.)  I am crossing my fingers that my ditching will make my spring arrival a bit less eventful as I do not wish to spend another day carrying rocks to fill a mud hole so that I can get my truck back out!

My last trip out for the season in 2015 was also one for the record books.  I was taking out the tractor to use down on the farm for moving snow during the winter.  (And more important, to open the road this spring!)

There was a nice layer of packed snow that had been rained on creating a nice icy surface for me to navigate.  It was dark and I was not about to stop and install chains on my truck before leaving the camp yard because I do know how to drive on ice!  I started out and was going along nice and slow to get the feel of everything and things were going quite well.

I started up the big hill where they had logged when things started going downhill, literally!  Have you ever tried to back a trailer down a steep hill when all of your brakes are locked?  (If you have not then I do not recommend trying it cause it doesn't work all that well.)  I managed to keep things lined up until I needed to make the turn.  Things then started happening that gives you this very nasty sinking feeling in ones stomach.

I tried letting off the brakes, I tried putting it in forward and spinning like crazy to change the inevitable crash that was rapidly coming to be.  I was on the steep part of the hill with the nice sharp drop off on the right.  I just wanted to end up on the left side because then I would perhaps just be stuck and not crashed.  Well, that was not about to happen and over the edge went the trailer, complete with tractor.

For those of you whom have been in over the road you probably remember all of the tall stumps that they left when the logging company widened out the road.  I have always intended to trim them down low for aesthetics, but I just never had the time.  (Boy am I glad I never found the time to trim them!)

As it kept going I was thinking, perhaps I will fetch up against one of those nice tall stumps and can just spin my wheels down to gravel and get back on the road.  That was not exactly what was in the cards, I missed every one of those stumps with the back of the trailer.  The good news was that I did get the edge of the trailer up against one, even if it was purely luck!  I got out and looked the situation over and had a brief thought of just unhooking the trailer and going to town and dealing with it in the morning.

I tried to release the trailer lock and it would not budge.  I grabbed an axe and started to pound on the lock when it occurred to me that once the trailer was unhooked there would not be any truck holding it from crashing the rest of the way over the edge.  Now I was really in a pickle for sure.  I had just shut down everything at camp and it was getting along in the evening.  Oh sure, I could have just walked back and settled in for the night but most of the stuff I needed was in the truck and there was no way I was going to walk 2 or three trips back and forth to get my necessary gear back there.

Now I have tried to make phone calls from that location more times than I can remember and even though I show a couple of bars of service right there I have never been successful at it.  I turned on my phone booster and dialed up Maureen.  It rang and she answered,  I told her I was stuck and to send the boy when he got home from class.  That was it, end of call, disconnected, unable to reestablish connection.  Ok, did she really get the message?  Text would not even begin to go through so there was no way I could know for sure, but I thought she had said that she understood to send Jed as I was stuck.  (Boy was that an understatement!)

I tried calling a buddy in town, but it would ring and he would answer and that was it, disconnected every time!  Oh well, not the first night I would have ever spent in a truck stuck in the woods.

I tried spinning my way to dirt and I could feel the thing move a bit every so often.  I had (thankfully) put the back hoe attachment on the tractor to take that down for some repairs.  I got on the tractor and started it up and tried pushing with the backhoe.  I could feel it try to move but without the truck pulling I was not gaining anything.  I just needed an extra driver to run the truck and all would be well I was sure!

I would stop and take a break every now and then, have a Diet Coke and reflect on how good a driver I was on ice and other such weak thoughts that drifted around in my brain.  It was several hours and I saw head lights coming over the rise!

The boy was coming to rescue me once again!  (He drove all the way to Northeast Carry in June at 10:00 at night to pull me out of a sucker hole that had swallowed my truck on my first day as a Park ranger working on the Penobscot River Corridor the summer before last.)  Now being as he was educated in the art of getting dad out of a "situation" he had brought all of the proper extraction gear.  We went to camp to get a few extra items that I felt might come in handy and we started in. 

I was wrong about the extra driver, I could not push enough to get the trailer back up over the bank, especially with it jammed against the stump.  A couple of high lift jack standards were bent into a neat bow, but eventually the truck and trailer were back on the road!  With him in the truck and me on the tractor (Which was still on the trailer.) pushing out over the back with the backhoe we managed to get the whole thing to flat ground.  Boy what a night that was!  (That is filed away under stupid hermit tricks as well.)

This fall/winter when I pull out for the season I will install chains before leaving the yard.  You can fool a hermit once but mostly you never get him the second time with the same thing!  (But I am sure that there is something else just waiting for me when I let my guard down just a bit, happens every time!)

That pretty much sums up this past seasons excitement, at least the most of it.  Some hermit tricks are kept strictly between hermits and not shared you know, as it is bad for the image!

I look forward to next season as I prepare for the winter months.  (Of course if you heard about the things that I did last winter to myself you might get concerned.  Being as they did not happen at Frost Pond and I managed to survive with only one trip to the hospital I figure that I will just leave them out of the journal pages.