It took awhile to amass enough pics to do this post, people get nervous when I ask them to hold my gun for me so I can take a few shots of the bear.  Me and my partner in crime “quick draw” pick up clients from a landing craft on the beach then take them to several secret locations where there are usually some bears.  Get them safely close enough to get all the photos they want then get them to an airplane and back to Juneau. 

It isn’t always that easy though, sometimes all you will be able to spot is a ear through the “jungle”.  When that is not even possible you have to make you clients excited to see tracks, scratch marks on trees or even the top of the excitment list ( bear shit).   

bears being evil animals will try anything in their vast arsenel of powers to avoid detection so I have a pair of these bad boys on order.

As far as a job goes this is one of the best I’ve ever had, even when we don’t see bear it is still as easy as pie you just have to be extra charming, no problem here.

first tomato of 2010

July 30, 2010

Our first red tomato of the summer is lumpy, gnarled, and squashed. It’s one of them hair-loomer varieties all the kids are talkin’ about these days. C’mon tomato plants! Make more! It’s gonna frost in a month!

ball bustin’

July 23, 2010

There are some farm activities that are not any fun at all. One of them is butchering chickens, and another of them is castrating young bulls. NBC will be butchered in fall 2011. His name is short for “New Bull Calf”. We chose this imaginative moniker because we didn’t want to get attached to him. Yeah right. Now NBC stands for “No Balls Calf”, though. If young bulls aren’t castrated the manly hormones degrade the quality of the meat. So the vet came out and used the device above to put a rubber band around NBC’s man stuff. It does just want you think it does, and they will drop off after about 2 weeks. Apparently it hurts moderately for about an hour  and then goes numb, so NBC won’t be spending too much time worrying about it, we hope, but how do we know. Sometimes farm life is a bummer. Especially if you’re a bull calf.

firecat lettuce patrol

July 20, 2010

Simon and Henry haven’t made an appearance on the blog for a while, so I thought you’d like to see they’re eating their vegetables. Or, drinking their vegetable water, rather. Water is super awesome to them, especially when I’m using it for any reason. They follow me around, waiting for me to turn on water so they can drink it. Which is the only reason I ever turn on the water, obviously. They have many places of their own to get a drink if they want to, but those are so boring. Everyone knows the only place to get your water these days is via Erica’s lettuce bucket.

huge bales

July 18, 2010

Haying this year was a cinch. All we did was use this fossil fuel stuff instead of our backs to cut, bale, load, and haul away our hay. It took a couple hours to pick up 60 tons of hay instead of last year’s three days that felt like three years (plus much more time to get it out from under tarps and all in the barn). I can sort of understand in a much more visceral way why people like oil-based products so much. Diesel is sort of incredible and deserves a certain respect, if begrudgingly.

The bales will be hauled to a port, loaded on a cargo ship and taken to Japan, where people will feed it to their milk cows. According to some quick googling I just did,  timothy hay (that’s what ours is) provides the much needed fiber to attain the high butter fat required of Japanese milk producers. In this country timothy hay is mostly fed to race horses and pet rabbits. So there you go.

legore lake revisited

July 13, 2010

I took my second trip to Legore Lake this past weekend with a posse of girls. We went earlier in the season this year, so there was still a lot of snow and ice around. It was hot though.

The water was just above 32°, but we all dove in eventually. I did an unintentional, freezing cold, naked hopping-up-and-down dance on a rock after getting out that my friends found very amusing (sorry Tyler, no pictures of that).

Spring is in full swing at Legore Lake right now. The lake basin looks bare at first glance but when you start looking around you find tons of little flowers and lots of bright orange lichen. (All photos taken by my housemate Lissa)

We sat on some rocks at the summit and spied on everything going on down below us.

Caitlin and I hauled some Terminal Gravity ESG all the way to the top just so we could do this (see above) for a while before we had to go back down.

There were still a lot of snow fields at the top and it was a giant slide back down the mountain. A pretty awesome way to travel except for the butt-freezing factor.

Legore Lake is such a cool hike, and I always want to take visitors on it, but it’s pretty hard (at least for small-time, hobbyist hikers such as myself). It’s something close to 4,000 feet elevation gain in four miles, and it took us nearly 5 hours to hike up and 2 1/2 to get back down. All in all it’s a nice little hike (as I’m sure Tyler will agree).

I was given a choice  of whether I wanted to have a room above the coffee shop, in the house, or a converted school bus.  You could have guessed wich one I chose even without the picture.  While the room in the house is free I sleep there and work on making the bus more comfortable. 

So far it has 4 bunks, a wood stove,  curtains, and a bench/storage area.  I’m working on electricity and making the bunks more comfortable but other than that, it is livable. 

I don’t drive it around much because it isn’t quite street legal with California plates and a stove pipe sticking out the side but it is nice to know that it could be driven if the urge struck me.

Not quite an ugly duckling,  found this guy out at the ocean and we are still trying to “identify” him.