Saturday, June 8, 2019

Rebuildling a Bridge

Beginning to place the new boards over the improved stringers

The Elderberry and Potluck Farm communities share a beautiful 12 acre piece of property that we call Bella Vista, named for the high-point of the property, where there is a lovely 180-degree view of the surrounding hills, and not a house or road in sight.  We have a trail to the top, but there is a spring that crosses the trail, and the spring had created a big wet bog that was not easily crossable by our 4-wheeler (Zeke) or tractor.  We use the vehicles to drive up to watch the sunset, and to keep the area mowed.  So a few years ago we put in a culvert and fashioned a bridge, using old lumber that had been stored in the Potluck Farm barns. Well, that lumber was truly too old to use, and in a couple of years, the boards broke with the weight of the tractor.  So this past winter, after the hurricanes, we held many fun workdays to cut 8' logs out of white oak trees that the hurricanes gave us, drag the logs out of the woods with the 4-wheeler, load them onto a trailer with the tractor, bring them to Jim Dykes' sawmill (Jim is a member of Potluck Farm), mill the logs into boards, take the boards up to Bella Vista, and install them (over improved stringers, also from white oak).  The job took all winter, but we finished it yesterday (except for trimming the sides of the bridge)!!  Now we can once again drive up for sunsets!
Lucy, Ross, Karolyn, Jon and Mary getting the stringers ready. 
On this same workday, Richard and Jim D were milling logs into boards.

Lucy, Mary, Richard, Jim D and Jim S placing the new boards

Once the boards were in place we starting drilling

Everyone had to bring a drill, because we had to drill holes first
(this is REALLY solid 2" white oak planks)
and then drill in the screws

Ross, Richard and Jim drilling away

Jim D, Richard and Lucy - love that they are all in the same position!!

Cathy taking photos with Riley and Rosie (who were not working one bit)

Driving across the new bridge on Zeke

Views at Bella Vista

This is the sunset and moonrise at the same moment at Bella Vista  -
one photo looking west and one looking east -
the advantage of a 180 degree vista!

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