Clean Up: Firepit area gate

After cleaning up in the bushes near the fire pit yesterday, today’s goal was to access the gate by the fire pit, before continuing in that area.  We needed someplace to pile the wood we’re cleaning out.

Before I could start on that, though, my younger daughter and I made a trip into town.  She had dropped off some resumes a few days ago.  The next day, one place called back, but she was with me at the shop with the mower, so they asked her to call back the next day.

That was yesterday.  They booked an interview with her for this morning.

And by “interview”, it turned out they meant, “what hours can you work and here are your free t-shirts.”

Starting next week, my daughter begins training as a cashier at the grocery store we usually shop at. 😀

That was a nice way to start the day!

So I didn’t get started on accessing the gate until this afternoon.

Here is what it looked like before.


The far end of the gate is completely hidden by overgrown lilacs, caraganas and a maple tree.


The picket fence thing that was there appeared to be attached to the barb wire gate only by this length of wire, twisted around, and one section of the top barb wire looped around a board.   So it wasn’t going to take much to separate them.

But first, I needed to clear the gate post.


Most of what I had to clear away was from a lilac bush, including a lot of dead branches and stems.  My mother likely planted it there, so I didn’t want to cut it all away.  The maple would have seeded itself, and likely the caragana as well.

I’ve left most of the caragana for now, but when it comes time to take down the two dead spruce trees, we might have to cut those back more.  We shall see when the time comes.

That done, I could open the barb wire gate.


The closure of which promptly broke in my hands.

All the wood there is really quite rotten.

Some of the barb wire has come loose from the posts.  The fence part also had boards coming loose.  It’s all really quite rotten.

Have I mentioned that much of the wood around here is really old and rotten?  I think I might have… 😉

It took some doing to get the fence part loose.  Hidden in the tall grass were fallen branches that had to be moved, and the grass itself – including years of thatch – had a good grip on the bottom of it!


I decided to leave the fence part like this for now, so that it’s visible.  There are so many nails in that thing, I don’t want to take any chances of someone stepping on it.


Speaking of nails, it turned out that part of the fence was indeed attached, by wire, to the gate post.  This length of board, however, was no longer attached to the fence part.  Even with all those nails!

I count 20.

While getting all this open, I could see something blue peaking through the grass.  Once done, I yanked it out to see what it was.


It seems to be a bell for a child’s bike.

Why was it there, and how many years as has it been there?

That done, I moved the barb wire gate to the outside of the yard, then cleaned up all the cut wood from clearing the gate, plus the pile from yesterday.


Since I had all that handy wood, I fixed the broken closure on the gate.

Here is the after picture.


There’s going to be a lot more to be added to the pile over the next while, so I am leaving the gate open for now.

All of this was about two hours of work.  Not too shabby!  I’ve stopped for the afternoon, though.  I plan to continue where I left off yesterday, but we were getting into the hotted part of the day, so I will wait until the early evening, when it starts to get cooler.  Now that this is done, I’ll be able to clean things up right away, too.

I placed the pile far enough away to completely clear the open gate, plus leave room to access the fence, if necessary.  Seeing the fence from this side, I was reminded that, at some point, it would be good to re-fence the entire house yard.  All of it, including the fence lines that are bordered by roads, if possible.  I say “if possible” because they are so full of trees, and my mother’s lilac border along the garden section.  It would be good to have something other than barbed wire fencing and gates!  I would still want to have a gate here, by the fire pit, and the one by the garden.  I’d even like to add another gate to the south fence line, so that we could drive into the yard at one end, then out again at the other.

Hmmm.  Thinking of it that way, it might just be easier to build a new fence on the other side of the driveway.   And if we do that, may as well extend to the fence that’s keeping the renter’s cows out.  Get rid of the current house yard fencing, completely.  Wow.  That would really extend the size of our yard!

That, however, is likely many years into the future.  Still, it’s something we can talk about and plan for.


I have to keep reminding myself.  This year is our “figure it out” year, and the focus for now is on the house and yard.

That is plenty of work all on its own! 🙂

The Re-Farmer

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