The Dry Stone Wall Begins For 2017

It stopped raining here some time on Saturday night (April 8) so Sunday afternoon I  ventured out to do some gardening work. Did a bit of cleanup, put a few tools away in their proper home, found a things in the shed I’d forgotten about – you know the drill for the first time out “there” after the winter. After about a half hour of wandering, picking up bit and pieces of branches etc., I decided it was time to look at the main project.

The Dry Stone Wall.

Rescued the fence post tripods from where they were marking the waypoints for the snow plowing team.  Set them up at the ends of last year’s wall, strung some string to mark the east wall and took a few minutes to appreciate the amount of work I’d already accomplished.
When the small voice in the back of my mind said, “Not nearly enough to call it done, is it Doug.” I knew I had to do some work on the wall.

2017 Starts Off Really, Really, Well

There are days when things go well in my rockwork days and there are days I should just go swimming. This was a good day.  Given the temperature of the water, I’m really glad it wasn’t the alternative.

Found a perfect rock. Well, except for that long overhang. Got out the stone hammer and chisel. Carved a straight line across the offending end. Gave it a wicked smack with the hammer and (YES!) the stone split exactly where it was supposed to. I don’t mean close, I mean dead on,  straight down the crack just as nice as I’d want.

While I rather doubt they’ll all go that way, it was very, very nice to see the first one work properly. I decided this was a good omen for the rest of the year.

Setting up the guide strings, Moving the two big stones in the front (they’re not in permanent position) and the newly cut stone on the right end of the wall were the sum total of my work on the wall for the first time this season. Every little bit counts I note

A Half Hour Later

I had moved several honking big rocks into position to be used. Trimmed another one (I was on a roll). Ready for the 4th big stone…
And I felt the first twinge in my back.

The muscles had bypassed central brain control with its insistence on carrying on with the work and telegraphed their concern directly.

  • Got the message.
  • Packed up my tools.
  • Celebrated the first half hour of the 2017 season.
  • And decided it was high time for a Saturday afternoon nap.
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