As I described last time, I was chipping and shredding a bunch of branches from my recent woodcutting. This material I generally gather up to use in our sawdust toilets and to spread on our driveway and trails. So far it has been wonderfully useful in both capacities. With some balsam branches added, it smells very pine scented when applied to the outhouse contents. On the trails and driveway, I’m sure it will keep down the Labrador Tea that grows EVERYWHERE on the property, and it is easier to work with than the dwindling supply of gravel/clay I’ve been extracting from near our well.
Lately I’ve been building up a supply of the mulch in my trailer. It’s so much more efficient and satisfying to be able to have a full trailer load of mulch to apply to potholes and muddy areas, rather than trying to do it one bag at a time. It takes me about ten minutes of chipping and shredding to produce a single bag, which doesn’t go as far as you would hope.
On our hike, we passed by my latest pile of firewood that is suppose to be pre-dried. That is to say, it came from dead, standing trees. The last time I used it, all went well. This time though we had a few cold and wet days while it waited in the bush for me to get there with the trailer and bring it back to the yurts.
A little bit of snow made for a nicer atmosphere. Once it drops below zero it gets more comfortable again because you don’t get quite so wet, or so I find.
I loaded up the trailer as full as possible, and still had more wood, so I also topped up the bucket on the front end loader before heading home.
It was comforting to once again be able to split this pile, practicing my kiai to great effect. Kenny even got into the act, yelling back to me after each log was struck. It felt a bit like a gospel call and answer session.
Slightly annoyingly though, this wood would do better to have been put under cover sooner. The outside is still a little damp and cold, so it takes a bit more skill in positioning to get it to burn. You have to be sure to expose the nice, dry portions to the existing coals, so that the more humid outer layer has the water driven out of it. Oh well, live and learn!