Turkey over an open fire?

When I told James, a friend of mine, I was going to the cabin in Glen Haven on Thanksgiving Day, he asked, “Are you cooking a turkey over an open fire?”  Sounds like a good idea, but no, I didn’t cook a turkey at all yesterday, let alone over an open fire.

My daughter and her husband and my three grandchildren celebrated Thanksgiving on Monday.  My daughter is a labor and delivery nurse and she worked the night before Thanksgiving and was supposed to work again Thanksgiving night.  So, my dog, Goldi, and I drove up to the cabin for a day in the mountains.  Actually, I drove and she rode.

turkey
Bull Elk, 11/23/17, Photo by slc

Off of CR 43, I turned right at the Glen Haven General Store, drove over the bridge and over the creek.  Around the bend, a lone bull elk was resting among the pines and cabins.  Beautiful and serene.

On the way home from cleaning the cabin’s wood floor and removing nails from salvaged lumber today, traffic slowed.  A single big horned sheep sauntered down the highway next to the concrete barriers, headlong into traffic.  Sorry, I didn’t get a picture as I couldn’t stop on the road.

While I did not cook a turkey over an open fire at my cabin in Glen Haven on Thanksgiving, I did give thanks for having a special place in the mountains and for the beautiful wild animals that live there.

Peaceful and content – week four cabin update

peaceful and content
Highway 66 Detour, Photo by slc

October 2nd was the beginning of week four cabin renovation, but also the first day of Highway 34’s restricted usage due to the 2013 flood reconstruction project.  During the week, I worked on projects closer to home and substituted on Thursday and Friday at a middle school.

On Saturday, October 7th, it was forecast to be a balmy 70+ degrees so I headed up the cabin around noon, outside the new normal morning canyon access hours of 6:00-8:30 a.m.  Leaving at noon meant I had to go an extra 25 miles along the detour through the cities of Longmont and Lyons.  Little did I know, “leaf peepers” were also headed up to Estes Park on the same route.

peaceful and content
Fox Creek, Photo by slc

Normally, when I drive directly from my home to the cabin on Highway 34, it takes me about 40 minutes to turn onto Memory Lane.  On October 7th, it took 105 minutes (1-3/4 hours).  I tried to enjoy the fall orange and gold scenery.  The mountains had received a fresh dusting of snow.  I was not going to get stressed out by the huge delay due to the crowded detour.

Once at the cabin, I worked for about 2-1/2 hours on more repointing of the old stone foundation, picking up and disposing of tar paper, siding, and lumber into the rented dumpster, loading miscellaneous metal into my car’s trunk for recycling, and spraying a bleach/water mixture on the original cabin’s tongue and groove moldy pine ceiling.  Not glamorous work but I relished every moment in the warm gentle breeze, utter silence and the picturesque forest.  I didn’t want to leave.  It was so peaceful.

discover peacefulness
slc

Following the pilot car on my way home down the “normal” Highway 34 route (I was within the evening access hours of 4:00-8:00 p.m.), I discovered how truly peaceful and content I feel for the first time in my retirement.

In Walden, Henry David Thoreau wrote,  “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”

 

Newest life journey – week one cabin update

Image result for quotes keys

newest life journey
Key to cabin, Photo by slc

Day #2  This key finally opened the locked well-worn cabin door and now I hold the key to my newest life journey!

Today, I pulled thistles, raked and picked up bags and bags of small tree limbs and dry tall grasses before my son-in-law arrived to help with grass trimming around the 3/4 acre property.  He also removed cabinet doors from inside the cabin.  We wanted to open up everything so we could set off a Raid Max Deep Reach Fogger before we left for the day.  Several unwanted creatures live in old, abandoned mountain cabins.  Mice and squirrels have left signs of their visits to my cabin but the most unwanted creatures right now are the black widow spiders; we found two today.

newest life journey
1945 Magazine, Photo by slc

We also found a treasure today: an August 1945 edition of the We The People of North Carolina magazine.  In it are some pretty interesting articles.  One titled “Teachers’ New Salary Schedule” describes “minimum state salary schedule adopted for payment of all teachers next year, both white and Negro.”  A teacher with a graduate degree and two years experience would receive an annual salary of $1,487 which “includ(es) the $120 war bonus.”

Other articles titled “An Overall Picture of War-Time America” and “Federal Spending Down” reflect America’s history back in 1945.  The magazine was in good condition and made for fascinating reading at the end of the day.

Day #3

newest life journey
Permit, Photo by slc

I didn’t get up to the cabin today but I did attend a gathering of Big Thompson Canyon residents to pick up a permit.  The Canyon will be closed October 2nd for winter CDOT construction projects which are necessary to repair damage sustained in the 2013 Big Thompson River flooding.  According to CDOT’s press release the permit will “allow canyon residents living within the closure boundaries access” during the “large-scale closure.”

My cabin happens to be on the other side of the road closure but I was able to get a permit so I at least have limited access through the Canyon.  I can also access the cabin at other times but by a much further route through Lyons and Estes Park.  This closure will cause us to halt most work on the cabin as contractors will charge more to deal with the closure/permit situation.

The Canyon road, Highway 34, will reopen Memorial Day weekend 2018.

Read moreNewest life journey – week one cabin update

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