My tent cabin on the Kvechak River

The Bush Life

The Bush Life
My old buddy "KAYAK"

Monday, December 19, 2011

Trip to Skwentna

My friend Dave and I left Deshka Landing Friday about 11am. This is us starting out.

Here are some pictures along the trail.

My friend Dave

Me of course. Couldn't stand the helmet. Put my Beaver hat on.

Here we were 2 miles from my place and got stopped dead in our tracks. To much snow. A guy and his wife came by with a Skandic super widetrack and went ahead and opened the trail.
  Here at the property and got the machine stuck. Had 4 to 5 ft. of snow.

Finally got a path cleared on the property.

Dave shoveled snow in front of the cabin.

Me tamping a pathway.

One of my many thick Birch trees. 26in. diameter

Snow on the cabin.

Well I have to cut this short. It took us 6 hrs. when it should have been 3 because of the rollercoaster trail and getting stuck 2 miles from the cabin. I will add more later.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Weekend and future plans

I decided to come in today and do this post as I need Wednesday to prepare for a trip this weekend. First off, Breakfast, French Toast [made with powdered eggs], moose sausage and cinnamon spice coffee.

and it tasted real good.
 This Friday a friend and I are attempting another trip up to Skwentna and will spend the weekend there. We may come back Sunday or possibly Monday. This morning it was 10 degrees at the town cabin. So, I am hoping it stays cold.
 I  am doing some thinking on the town cabin and may keep it as I am thinking about selling the Skwentna property and going farther North up around the Brooks Range. I just keep getting the urge to be farther away from the road system. If this happens, I may have to break down and find me a partner, of the female gender of course. It's hard enough to look at this old face in the mirror.

A lot of hard years showing here. I suspect, I will do this journey alone. The Brooks Range is a beautiful area and very little human signs around. I will go this summer and scout out a place that has just about everything I need, this will be an adventure in itself. As far as the town cabin, I will keep it as a place to stay should I come to town and let certain Bush friends use it if they care to. As you can tell, things are really getting better for me. I was in a slump for awhile but, I am back to my old self.
 Being at the cabin this weekend will be good therapy. [SP?] I hope the trip up is uneventful, I will take my 1910 Winchester 25/20 for small game. I want to also see if my phone works up there. I'm pretty sure it won't work in the Brooks, what a shame, LOL. What would really be nice is, I could find a private pilot who would enjoy the trip and share expenses to the Brooks.
 Well, that just about does it, hope everyone has a great weekend.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Getting better

First of all, I started the renovation on my new outhouse.


OK, this was my attempt at a little humor. Things are seeming much better lately, I think it is because of the time of the year. Christmas time is by far my best time of the year. One day this week, I am turning in my Android and will just have basic cell service. I actually like coming to the library to use the Internet. Having it at the cabin spoils my down time. I spent yesterday shoveling snow.

   I had to make snow steps, the hill was getting slippery.

I have a few more projects to do and the weather is so nice, it is easier to get into them. This time of the year, I enjoy many things, shelter, food, warmth and my health. Not to mention the fact that I am in control of my life and no one else is. But, lately, I have been thinking about those who are a lot less fortunate than myself and many others. I bring it up because, the other day I stumbled on to a local radio station and the host kept talking about the homeless being drunks, druggies, dirty, smelly and a few other nasty names. I can't help thinking no matter how they got there, they are someones mom, dad, brother, sister, you get the point. It just saddens me that these people on talk radio who probably have a good home, has the means to help these people, rather than kick people while they are down. Their voice is heard in many parts of Alaska and can't help thinking they are a part of the problem fueling hate among people. So, as a New Year resolution, when I see someone down and out I will try to help in any way I can.
 On a lighter note, somewhere around the end of January, I am gong to help one of my Bush neighbors out, building a new cabin. I will look forward for that time. This is what Bush people do, help each other out when needed. I hope the weather gets colder, as I am planning to go to Skwentna this weekend. Last weekend was a bust.
 I am getting in my Bush mode, had powdered eggs and dehydrated hash browns for breakfast these past two days. Tomorrow morning, French toast made with powdered eggs and moose sausage. Life don't get much better than that. I am also going to build a temporary outdoor shower. I will provide a picture when done but, will spare you on how it works,LOL.
 So, that is my post for today and hopefully, I will have more to share on Wednesday. Take care.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Change is happening

  I kind of took that first step, next Monday I am turning in my Android phone. I have a regular cellphone I will just hook up for phone calls for right now. I will make trips to the library 3 times a week to use the Internet to get messages and update my blog. Yep,I am weening myself off this Internet addiction so to speak. I believe that our lives have been taken over by electronics and is spoiling everyone that uses it. Not to mention how much information is gathered about your personal life. I had 5 credit cards and I cut up 4. I will keep 1 credit card and my debit card for now then, some time down the road I will use checks or cash. I want to keep myself less dependent on modern technology. Ever since I was introduced to the world of Internet, I lost the personal touch. I will start writing letters again, send postcards and cards for all occasions. There is just something wrong with receiving or giving an Ecard. We are losing our human status.
  I am starting  to get all my stuff together for the move back to Skwentna and I am deciding now to either sell or rent the town cabin. It is a great little cabin and in a nice area but, it just isn't the Bush. I don't feel the freedom like one has in a remote area, don't see the wildlife or feel the quietness. Not to mention, the grader keeps plowing my driveway in, I've never had to worry about that before,LOL.
  I actually feel at peace with myself now and find myself reading more and getting things done and not being lazy. I haven't been on Craigslist in a week and a half. I have been going on walkabouts and they were nice but,it made me a bit nervous seeing it is strange surroundings.
  The trooper, ah yes, there is something that really drives me nuts. I have been trying to narrow down the problem and just can't figure it out yet. I know it is not getting spark but, can't figure out why. I can't find a mechanic out here willing to come here and see if it's a simple or hard fix. The garages want me to tow it to them so I can pay $90 to $100 an hour. I might be better off trying to sell it or give it away and be rid of the headache.
  So, here I am sitting in the town library, it's about 20something degrees and a light snow is falling, drinking a diet pepsi and snacking on pretzels. I'm the only one in the hall on the Internet. Nice and quiet though. Guess I will head on back and make some coffee, put another log on the fire and read. Hope everyone has a nice day. Later

I will be at the library Monday, Wednesday and Saturday
That's when I will moderate comments. The jerk with the mouth is still stalking my blog. Sorry

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Things are changing

Hi everyone, first of all I want to show you my new woodstove and outhouse.

These are the before pictures of the out house. When I am done fixing it up, I will post new pictures. The temps. here have been in the -20's to -35 just about every day and night. It just recently got up to -8.

I have been giving everything going on with me some thought. I just don't care to be on the road system for even a little time. I have decided to head up to my Skwentna property and spend some time there. I really need some alone remote time.  I am shooting for around the middle of Dec. I also got a request from a friend who has a remote cabin west of me to come stay with he and his wife and help him finish a cabin he is building and am entertaining that thought. It would be nice to spend some quality time with other Bushdwellers.
  I am thinking about renting out the Willow cabin and then possibly selling it. I may try to sell it outright or carry the paper which wouldgive me steady income. I have an attorney friend that will help me set it up.
  I am so looking forward to getting up to Skwentna. It will be nice to be among Nature and not have so many people around. I will be alone this Thanksgiving for the first time in a long time. When at the lodge, I had a couple that would come out for smoke turkey and all the fixins. So this year, I will pack the backpack, grab my rifle and snowshoes and head into the woods for the day. I wish everyone a very


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Hi everyone

Well, it's a beautiful day and cold. This morning I woke up to -30 degrees and was snug as a bug with my new woodstove I bought last Wednesday. Sorry, I took pictures and forgot to download them on my computer, next time. Since my last post I have mostly been just keeping warm. Had a great time installing the new woodstove. First of all, it was heavy, it took all I had just to lift it up on the porch to get it inside. Stupid me, I decided it would be easier to roll it end over end, "OOPS" forgot about the firebricks inside. HUH? No, they didn't break luckily. Anyway, I bought new stovepipe and we all know how fun it is to snap them together. I called my neighbor who happens to be a musher and he came down to help me, he held the stovepipe while I snapped them together. Then came time to put the damper in, oh yeah, that didn't go so well either. I put it in but, it didn't want to snap in right so, I use a hammer on the end of the handle and yep, broke the damper in half. So, my neighbor drove me to town 26 miles roundtrip to get another one. He put that one in, thank goodness.
  The stove works great but, sometimes it can run you right out of the cabin. I think I have it figured out now. The stove I bought has a window in the door and sure makes it nice at night with the oil lamps. Speaking of which, I broke one of them which was frosted and now I need to locate one. Probably Ebay. I got the outhouse built also but, don't remember if I loaded a pic on here. If not, that will have to be the next time. I thought I would check in and let  you all know what is happening. My plan is to keep current as much as I can.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Back again

I apologize for taking so long getting back into blogging. I have been very busy working on the new cabin on the road system and actually have it almost 100% done. It is livable.

  I think I did a fairly good job. It's cozy and warm. To tell the truth I really am not that happy being here and am trying to make a decision on what to do. I find being on the road system is way tougher than being remote. I am making plans to return to my remote property soon, I hope. I have some issues I need to tie up here first.

 I am presently in a library and people have their kids running around, screaming and bothering everyone. They are driving me nuts. I hope I get through this without a meltdown. Anyway, I am kept busy, shoveling snow, harvesting firewood and just finished my new outhouse. Which, I forgot to take a picture of before I got here.

  I had a friend who stopped by yesterday who has a cabin out by my place and was a welcome visit. I don't get many visitors here,the people who live around here seem to keep to themselves. The interesting thing is, most of the people who live close by have no electricity like myself but, run everything either by generator or solar panels. Although close by there is a section with very expensive houses with electricity.

  I bought a 1988 Isuzu Trooper to drive while here and that has bitten the dust. It turns over but, won't start. I am trying to locate the problem.

   There a quite a few mushers around and I am trying to meet them because they are the closest I will find who enjoys the BUSH. DeeDee Jonroe is about 2 miles down the road from me. I did make friends with a guy who lives around the corner from me and lets me come and do laundry once in awhile. He seems to be a recluse because, the locals don't associate with him. Maybe because we are both Vietnam Veterans we get along.

 This is from where I get my water, it is about 3 miles down the road.

 There is a creek within 5 minutes from me but, not sure about the water. I will try it soon, if for no other reason, I can use it for showering.

  The one interesting thing about here is, I am surrounded by people but, I may as well be remote. They kind of stick to themselves or have their own little clique?

  I hope everyone is understanding of my tardiness in keeping my blog up. I will try to do better in the days to come. Hopefully soon, I will be out at the homestead.  Take care and wish everyone a great winter.

Friday, September 16, 2011

I'm back

Well, things have been moving right along. I just got back from a temporary caretaking job and am now back working feverishly to get this road system cabin done. I am staying in it now, so glad to get out of that camper. I installed a small woodstove and it works fine. I just finished insulating the interior and working on building a counter and shelving, pictures to follow. I will be taking some pictures soon. I bought a hidabed and it is pretty comfortable. It is kind of lonely even with the few people that are around. They kind of stay to themselves and have their own little circle, which is fine with me. The ones I have met ask way to many personal questions and seem standoffish when I provide them with no information. Anyway, hoping to get this place done soon. I have been getting requests from remote lodges and some people with remote cabins to do some temporary caretaking. Anyway stay tuned.

Monday, August 15, 2011


First, thanks to everyone who commented on my last entry. I want to let everyone know, the cabin is closed in. Before I can make it livable, I am going on a 2 week caretaking job in the BUSH. This is a welcome job, it will take my mind off being on the road system. Here are a some pics. I won't have internet access for two weeks.



I still have more windows to install and remember, this cabin is made mostly of scrap wood. When done, I will have less than $1000 into it.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Feeling confused.

It's been awhile and I have just finished preping the land for the new cabin and I am not very happy, even though I really should be. To tell the truth, I feel very uncomfortable being here on the road system even though it is a bit secluded. It just doesn't feel the same. Then again, it doesn't help very much being stuck in a little overhead camper either. I have to travel 13 miles to use my computer at a library.  I don't know how things will change once everything is done but, I am starting to think I just may sell this place and make a few bucks and get back to my BUSH life. Anyway, this is what is going on with me at this time. I hope everyone is enjoying themselves and will keep checking in. Take care

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

I'm still around

Hi everyone, I know it's been awhile and everyone is curious about what's going on. Well here goes, anyone who lives a bush life are known for one of many things and that is, being unpredictable and I am one of them. As many who live off the road system knows, when you go to town to shop or whatever, you either stay in hotels or with friends. My friends on the road system are far and few between. The friends I do have welcome me to stay but, I prefer to not. I like being by myself and am more comfortable than being under someone elses roof. So, that being said, I bought a piece of property up Talkeetna way and really don't want to be specific to it's whereabouts. I am presently building a small cabin there and this way, I have my own place to stay when I go to town. It's a 1/2 acre lot and I am building a 12x16 cabin on it. There is a small boat launch for the Big Su and a 2300ft.airstrip right around the corner. It is very private. I will be heading back to the Homestead in a week and a half. Here are a few pictures.
                          Front of property

                      Clearing the property


                Clearing finished

               Driveway graveled in

               My temporary home

          Walkway to cabin site

                     Cabin site

Well, that's as far as I have gotten so far. Just me and my chainsaw and I can't tell you how many times I had to sharpen the chain or get a new one. I am collecting a lot of firewood. Now, because of my thriftyness and patience, I have gotten most of my materials free [gotta love craigslist],LOL. Even though this property is on the "road system" it is very private. Am I doing the right thing? I don't know but, hey, I can always sell it for good money. I paid $3500 for the property and I will have about $1500 in expenses in it. It took me quite awhile to find a place to get on my computer. I will say one thing for sure, can't wait to get off the road system.
  I just want to reassure everyone that I am not abandoning "THE BUSH LIFE". I will try to keep everyone in formed a little more often. Take care.