March 1st - 2nd, 1992
Happy New Year!! Came up to the land during a warm spell. Beautiful weather yesterday but colder today. the pipe under the sink is split – a mini Old Faithful if used. Found two dead mousies in the cabin garbage can. Poor little guys. Found lots of deer evidence but no deer. the beaver is having a hey-day. Found a half-eaten tree near the powerline so chopped it down making it fall away from the wire. Couldn't drive into the land – the big trucks and machines had torn the road to _____ . A fifty foot sea of mud! Hope to come up again soon.
March 28th - 29th, 1992
Adam and Robin and dogs up for a weekend. the weather has been great thus far. Last night (Friday) we arrived to a fresh layer of snow but it melted by about 10 a.m. on Saturday. Since we are a little worried about getting out, we decided to park at the top of the hill. It only took a couple trips to get all of our stuff down to the cabin. the cabin looked great and there was lots of wood cut. Adam spent some time today cutting some more. Saturday was beautiful! Clear blue sky and a slight wind. Adam found a beaver – DEAD. He is huge – about 60 lbs. Adam and I looked it over and found that the beaver is missing his two bottom teeth and it's lower jaw may be broken. We don't think that it has been dead for very long – maybe a couple weeks or even less. It is located east of the spring.
Well, we skinned the beaver! Adam phoned his Zoology prof and he suggested taking out the gut contents before we brought it back and gave it to the museum. Adam did the cutting and I took lots of photos. Now we have to figure out how to pack this huge animal home. It is a male. We both hope there is another beaver around. It is really sad that this one died but by taking him to the museum, the will be able to identify the cause of death and will use him for teaching courses and display.
Sunday was again very beautiful. It was a little bit windy. Adam and I followed a hawk around for about an hour. What a beautiful bird. We cleaned the cabin, restocked the wood and packed the car. It's been another great and interesting visit at the cabin.
April 12th - 15th, 1992
Matthew Woodward, Tina, and Mark VanDyke were here and had a great time except for: 1) brown water with white floaty things from the pump
2) falling in the water multiple times
After the eruption and ensuing flood of Old Faithful under the sink, we decided to go for river water instead. (boiled of course) I called Gary Doering and they will be coming by soon to check things out and hopefully repair the pipe. We made multiple calls to Calgary – all collect. Stacked and split a bunch of wood, played a lot of music and stayed up late. A great way to spend spring break! I'll be back.....
What a privilege it was indeed to come and dwell in a rustic setting such as this. Tina and Matt already mentioned the major incidents we experienced here. I will only say thanks to the cabin, the surrounding area, and the family for an amazing holiday. I hope to be writing in here again soon.
May 3rd - 5th, 1992
Mark Jensen and Adam out for some fun in the sun. We played too long and burnt our bums. 27 – 28 degrees. Lots of wildlife – coyotes, deer, porcupine, grouse, hawks, ducks, geese, and lots of wasps in the cabin.
P.S. the shower works better if you take the shower head off.
May 9th - 10th, 1992
Spencer, and I came out for the weekend. He takes to this place like a duck to water – busy the whole time cleaning up the area around the cabin, digging out the firepit, clearing the path to the river, etc. We went for a walk along the Elephant Path and Timbre scared up a huge buck mule deer. I set up my tent trailer and aired it out. It's still OK for fine weather sleeping. Happy Mother's Day!
May 10th, 1992
Stefan – on the way back from Edmonton. Stopped to have a BBQ with Mom. It started to hail as soon as we sat down to eat. I discovered that I've forgotten how to play the accordion but can still fake it on the ukelele.
I've really enjoyed my visit to the cabin. I love the quiet, the river and the natural environment. I like working around here – it is something I've always dreamed of. Looking forward to our next visit.
May 12th, 1992
Es war herrlich. We had schnee and x-mas songs. Plenty of sunshine too and vogel chasen.
Walter and I up overnight. Wakened this morning by a woodpecker tap-tapping on the house. then he started tap-tapping on the chimney and next thing he fell in!! He fluttered in there for a while and the the Woodpecker Wescuer came to his rescue. Walter climbed up on the roof in his pyjamas and slippers and pulled the chimney off. Out flew the bird! Spent the rest of the day walking the perimeter of the land. Saw some deer and enjoyed the mixed bag of weather – some sun, some cloud and a few flakes of snow. Very relaxing. Till next time.
May 18th, 1992
Stefan and Fabi were here. Surprised to find nobody here for the long weekend. Hot and sunny. Didn't do a thing. We'll be back ASAP>
May 24th, 1992
Karin and friends Sandra, Sean and Len here overnight. Beautiful weather and the cabin in good repair. Getting rid of some of the food left here. We built a small dam down by the old ford.
Green grow the rushes oh
Green grow the rushes oh
the first hours that ere I spent
I spent among the lasses oh.
May 29th - 31st, 1992
Came up after work on Friday to spend the weekend. Saturday was grey and cold, Sunday hot and sunny. My friend, Spencer, used up the leftover shingles and did the roof on the toolshed, then gave the bare walls a coat of stain. We burned scrap on Saturday – the remains of the old outhouse, etc. Stefan and Fabi arrived early Sunday morning and we spent some time in the river. Good time as usual. We showered and shampooed using the new outdoor facility – worked well and the water was warmed by the sun.
Stefan and Fabi here for a quick visit. Got a sunburn and left.
June 8th, 1992
Adam and friend Mark up for a few days of STUDYING – no fun, no excitement, no burn, just reading. Good weather. Tina and Mark came up for a day. they sound great on their guitars. Timbre helped teach Bailey how to fetch at the river and both Bridgette and Bailey swam all the way across the river. their exercise program is in full swing. We cleaned up the beer and pop cans from around the cabin and removed two dead mice (one of which was a pregnant mother)from their traps. Unfortunately, the traps got disassembled in the process. Just as well though since mice removed from prime habitat will quickly be replaced by in migration. So remember......be kind to wildlife and they will be kind to you. We saw our friend the porcupine but do not wish to reveal its location for fear of poaching. Can't wait to get everyone up here like the good old days.
June 18th, 1992
Karin and friend up for the afternoon. Beautiful weather – great for roasting smokies. Didn't see any wildlife – this includes mice. I'm taking a wild rose bush home for Gram. I hope that doesn't offend anyone. I'm also looking forward to having a big campfire with all the folks!
Stardate, June 20th, 1992
Captain's Log the Bullwinkle burgers were great – no mice but watch out for the skunk. Watch out for the quicksand. thanks for a wonderful Father's Day.
Stardate same as above
the Holt family's inaugural visit. A wonderful time was had by all. the dinner and company were both excellent. Hope to be back again very soon. I don't know what it is of why but I have this feeling that Corry Brown was here before.
June 20-21st, 1992 Father's Day/Summer Solstice
Had a great time at "Steve's Annual Christmas Party". We must start planning for Father's Day in December! Good food, good friends and good weather. Not a drop of snow! I forgot the tree decorations though!
My favourite part was picking wild roses and smelling wild roses. I couldn't catch any butterflies. I liked playing in the water the best.
I liked picking the leaves and putting them in the water. I also liked to put grass in the water.
June 20 – 22nd, 1992
Kate, Steve, Jenna and Jacob up for a get together with our old high school friends (see above). Steve's Annual Christmas Party was a little late this year. It is now a family affair with lots of kids! Everyone had so much fun that we're thinking of getting together again in August.
Saw deer, a frog, a toad and lots of butterflies. Had an hour or two downpour last night. the river is fast and cool. Lots of warm spots though.
the cabin repairs and upkeep are great! Many thanks to all involved. Kate and I hope to be back in early July for 3 or 4 days and I plan to do some repairs to the deck at that time. Be careful of the rotting spots! I'm also making arrangements for the old cars and scrap metal to be hauled out at that time. (I hope) Looking forward to the reunion and the beginning of a new cycle as our kids get older and more independent (hence much easier to camp with). Enjoy your visit! In peace,
P.S. We tried to set up the telescope but found a few pieces were missing. this is a concern. Does anyone know where these bits are? Also, we're on the last roll of toilet paper so, unless you brought some, use it wisely! What a place!
What a weekend!
June 25th, 1992
Tina, JP and Mark up for the afternoon – it's HOT! Went for a walk, ate lunch and went swimming – all in three hours. We looked for strawberries but only found about five. Oh well. I'm sorry I'll miss you all on July 10th. Have fun!
July 5th, 1992
Stefan decided to overnight here instead of staying in Edmonton. It's cloudy but warm and the river is very high. Looking forward to Friday.
July 17th - 19th, 1992
Came out after work on Friday and stayed till Sunday. Friday evening was warm and dry enough to have a BBQ and sleep on the deck. I was wakened by rain and moved inside with the wildlife – a pesky, busy mouse.
Saturday I drove over to the south side and walked around over there. the river has made two small channels through there – one with a beaver dam on it and a pond behind it that has minnows in it. Lots of evidence of deer. Went to the James River Store on the way back – it's as eclectic as ever. Love it!
Stopped and talked to the foreman at the compressor site – says the idea of having fill delivered from there to fill in the hole behind the cabin will need permission from someone with more authority than he has. Will follow up on this notion.
Sunday was bright and sunny so went for a hike around the north side. I've never seen the meadow so lush nor the forest so full of mushrooms. Ran out of water and discovered that the porcupine had eaten through the plastic pipe. We'll have to encase it or bury it to keep it working. At the moment, you have to be quick to use it, or store it, before you loose it. See you all soon. Xoxox
July 25th, 1992
JP and Chris up overnight on our way to Crescent Falls near Nordegg. Not much to report. JP fixed the water line with duct tape. Hope it holds. Water drained and power off. Looking forward to our next visit.
July 27th, 1992
Stefan, Joan, Andrew, Kurt here for the day. the beaver dam is gone! I wonder if they have moved it somewhere else. For all the rain, the river is pretty low. It would be a nice day for a swim if the sun would come out.
July 25th- 27th, 1992
Adam and Robin with the dogs arrived around 6:30 Saturday evening. We swam in the river a few times and built a sauna which you will probably already have noticed. We used a couple of 2x4s from the shed to finish it – if anyone had other things in mind for those, I'll replace them. the same goes for the can of paint we used. I hope people will venture to try the sauna – it really works well. When the lid on the stove is down, the smoke going up the chimney sucks air through the vent at the front which really makes the fire roar if wide open. that's the way to go to get it warmed up – then the vent can be closed. If people don't like the location of the sauna, they need only arrange to get 10 or 12 strong people to pick it up and move it! But where ever you put it, give it a try!! Get your ten friends to try it too! Wear your river runners though so you can run over to the shower every now and again. Which reminds me, there seems to be a fair sized wasp nest in the tent trailer. I say seems to be cause I wasn't about to open it but there were lots of wasps going in and out. So, have fun in the sauna. See ya later.
July 31st - August 3rd, 1992
Kate and Steve and Jenna and Jacob up for what the weather forecasters say could be three very hot and dry days. Who are those people and how do they keep a job? Arrived Friday night about 9:15, after driving through a mix of sun and thundershowers for two hours. It started to rain here about 9:30. We abandoned plans to tent it and had to sleep with the kids because of the thunder. A rather sleepless night. It didn't help to have found a bat, albeit a dead bat, in the cabin on arrival. Good news? No mice!
Saturday started well and we took full early advantage. Drove to Sundre to buy supplies for the deck repairs and to window shop. Once back, I got to work painting the lumber while the kids began the transformation of the sauna into a temporary playhouse. Kate also "played house". After a bit of rain, we walked to the north fence to pick raspberries(LOTS!!)and scare the deer (several). Had an inside fire, made s'mores and watched T.V. (Decadent – Olympic addiction!) More rain, so everyone slept in the cabin again (off and on).
Sunday, the sun came out. I set to work on the deck again. there were probably 25 to 30 rotten bits replaced. the good news is that the sub-structure is still fairly solid. Came up a little short of wood so there are still a couple spots to be patched. the railing also needs work and the surface needs an overall paint. A fresh gallon of stain is in the shed. the whole family helped out.
the kids and I went to the river but it was too windy and cold to swim much – chased minnows instead. the river was slow and low, but cold. It was raining again by the time we got back to the cabin. the kids had a bath in a Rubbermaid tub and I had a hot (NOT) "solar" shower outside. Cooked a wonderful meal, garden veggies, campfire potatoes, burgers or steak, in, on and around the fireplace. the kids were exhausted and went to bed just after eight as the rain began to intensify. By 9:30 we were in the midst of one of the three worst electrical/rain/wind storms I've ever seen. You could only see about 20 yards and the thunder was deafening. the power went out a couple of times but only briefly. the roof leaks around the fireplace and by the largest hole in the ceiling. Other drips could be heard but not seen. Nothing major though and I expect a normal rain would cause no trouble.
Woke this morning to thick fog and a dull roar from the river. On inspection we found that it had doubled in depth, tripled in width and was carrying large trees at high speed down the valley. Most impressive!! We listened to the radio and heard the storm was bad all over with millions of dollars of crop and property damage, hail the size of grapefruit, hail up to one foot deep, etc. they also said that, if the sun breaks through today, more such storms will develop. the sun is shining. We are packing. I guess we haven't lost all faith in those weather forecasters after all!
Once loaded, we'll stay until the rain starts again. You never know, we may be here all day! Hope your stay is a dryer one and no less enjoyable. In peace,
P.S. Jenna says that she really liked all the colouring supplies. Jacob didn't like the wasps nest I uncovered in repairing the deck. Both wonder why they haven't seen the elephants yet. Maybe next time.
P.P.S. Nothing should be left plugged in on departure. Pull all plugs and then turn off the power on the back wall.
August 3rd, 1992
Yup – they were here all day. It's good to see the next generation enjoying the place. Judy and I will look for raspberries on the way out. Hope the storm hasn't done them in.
August 12th, 1992
At last! On our third attempt we finally got here. We tried July 1st but it rained. We tried August 9th but couldn't get away (visiting friends). But we're here and the weather is glorious! It's so peaceful and quiet. Did in a wasps' nest in the tent trailer.
Today was fabulous. Heather, Alec and I built a dam across a tiny stream to create a pond for Holly to play in on the gravel bar. there was a large sandy place for laying out our towels and the kids had lots of fun in the sand. Great dinner cooked on hot coals and a lovely evening walk to pick raspberries. Neighbours of ours from 2 quarters east of here dropped by on their evening walk – Larry and Jeanne Brunner of Calgary. They are thinking of having a well dug and wanted to ask how we like ours and about the contractor. I suggested they call Carol.
We leave tomorrow for two weeks in B.C.
P.S. I'm really impressed with all the repairs – this place is in good shape! Hope we left everything better than we found it. Love,
P.P.S. We drained the water from the holding tank – hope that was the right thing to do. Didn't see any instruction for leaving re water.
August 29th, 1992
Karin and friends Cynthia and Vic here for the day. Beautiful weather and all like that. Everything seems to be in good repair. Ate too much. Hope to make it back up soon.
September 5th, 1992
Chris, JP and Tina were up for a very brief period of time. I haven't been here all summer and wanted to see how things were up here. Unfortunately, summer seems to have left us as it is currently snowing. So much for fall...
We had a nice, quiet evening of Scrabble playing, reading and chocolate bar eating, went to bed early and got up late. For fear of being snowed in, we are about to leave. Too bad – I would have liked to stay longer. Maybe I can make it back later this month.
September 8th, 1992
Arrived between showers on Tuesday afternoon – it cleared later and has been very pleasant since. Wednesday, went to Sundre and rented a log splitter. Spencer dismantled the metal shed and rebuilt it behind the cabin, then proceeded to fill it with split wood. Sawed up some of the logs that were lying out back too and we moved the bug into the hole. I talked to the Shell foreman, Ted Lincham, about getting some fill from our own place and just using their equipment. Made a few phonecalls – Mom, Dan, Steve and Kate – all in favour of spending up to $500 on the project. Called Alan James and he voted no – says we may need a meeting. Said I'd call back on Monday and let them know what the rest of the tribe want.
Went for a walk through the forest west of the cabin. It's hard to get through there but very pretty in spots – all mossy under the spruce trees. Dad's grave marker is still in place – just as we left it.
Not much else to report. I'm off to Edmonton to spend the weekend at Pigeon Lake with Linnie, Rona and Heather. Xoxoxo
September 19th, 1992
Adam and friend Mark up for Friday night and Saturday. Toyota broke down in Sundre so we're driving a service car while they replace the timing belt. Beautiful weather and trees turning yellow.
I really don't understand the point of filling in the hole and I'm not sure that inside the bug in the hole is the best place to dispose of old paint, roof cement and other niceties.
the porcupine came quite close to the cabin – Bailey found it but stayed away – so, if you bring dogs, keep an eye on them.
September 27th, 1992
Adam and Robin and Robin's Dad, Bob, and Robin's brother Chris up for a beautiful day in the sun. Chris tried to mountain bike across the James River but did not make it!! Adam and Robin looked for signs of bats in the attic. Found some scats but no animals. Too bad. Have plans to build a bat house next year. Hope to come up again soon.
Didn't see the porcupine this time.
October 3rd, 1992
Judy and friend Spencer here for the weekend. We spent the afternoon in the river valley – walked, waded and sat in the sunshine. We saw a deer and, when we came back up to the cabin, two woodpeckers were flying about, chattering and hovering like hummingbirds. We got very close to them. Lots of chickadees about too. Had a BBQ and listened to records – Carmen, Brahms.
It rained some through the night and a pesky mouse kept me awake. It was eating the peanuts I had left out on the counter and I was too lazy to get up and put them away.
On Sunday, we went for a walk on the Crown quarter north of ours – past the old log milling sites and the spring by our NW corner. It was a sunny day. I look forward to seeing everyone at thanksgiving. Xoxo
December 9th, 1992
Chris and a friend, Don, up for the day. Started out cloudy and cold but was clear and warm in the afternoon. Walked all over, keeping an eye out for a suitable Christmas tree. Found one close to home at the top of the hill. thanks to Judy and Spencer for leaving the fire set in the Franklin – much appreciated. We roasted smokies on the fire and had a cozy afternoon of music, food and conversation. Lots of evidence of wildlife – deer and moose tracks and droppings. No sign of mice. Hope we get some more snow before Christmas – will return to ski. Love to all –