Off the Grid  Retirement at our remote log cabin in Colorado

Monday, October 09, 2017

Snowed Out

Posted by: Rick

If you read this blog last year, you know that we spent a lot of time and effort making sure we would be okay if “snowed in”. With no winter access other than our own ingenuity, getting snowed in at the cabin for several weeks at a time is a real possibility. 

However, we are not prepared to be “snowed out” as we are today. 

View from the cabin into the meadow, from the webcam.

We attended a dog show in Denver over the weekend (where both Bella and especially Destin did well and had a great time). We took the RV and stayed at the show site. We left there about 6:00 p.m. on Sunday and soon realized that, as predicted, Northern Colorado and Southern Wyoming were being hit with a big snow storm.

Rather than risk pulling the RV over 8500+ feet passes in snow, we decided to stop in Fort Collins for the night. We were able to find a nice spot after-hours in a KOA campground where we are weathering the storm.

From our webcam as well as reports from neighbors there is about 12” of fresh, heavy, wet snow at the cabin. We are planning to stay here at the campground until we can be assured of getting back into the cabin. We still have to haul the RV to Laramie and put it in storage. Then, make our way home from there. We will give it a day or two, I think.

We learn new things every day. Since we were towing the trailer behind us, it made sense to stay in a campground. But, that was not our first thought. At first we planned to stay in a motel. What a pain that would have been, moving all our stuff from the truck and trailer to the motel room. But, I had winterized the trailer before leaving the dog show site. Since the weather forecast for Laramie was calling for very, very cold temperatures tonight (Monday night), I decided to buy a bunch of RV antifreeze and go ahead and winterize the trailer before towing it back. So, that was one reason to get a motel. But, the trailer is “home” and very comfortable, especially when hooked up to electricity, water and sewer. And, since the “de-winterizing” (summarizing?) process is relatively simple, we decided to do that instead. It took about 1/2 hour (in the cold, wind and snow), but was worth it since we are now cozy in our moveable home. Next time, I’ll think twice before winterizing “on the road”.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Air Ambulance Coop

Posted by: Rick

I just renewed our membership with AirMedCare, a network of air ambulance providers. It is not insurance, rather a coop. By joining, if we ever need air ambulance services and use a member provider, all of our out-of-pocket expenses would be covered. They bill our insurance and any costs not covered by insurance are picked up by the coop.

Air ambulance services can be very expensive, running into the tens-of-thousands of dollars. Given our remote location, it seems a small expense for the peace of mind we get being members. I don't mean this to be a commercial, but rather a way to inform you of this kind of service.

I guess they have about 3 million members nationwide. They cover 39 states with a variety of air ambulance companies. We'd be served by Northern Colorado MedEvac out of Greeley or REACH out of Loveland. You can check them out at the link above. If you decide you'd like a membership, let me know. If you give me your name, city, state, and phone number, they will contact you. And, if you decide to sign up we each get 3 months of free coverage.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Snow? Oh no. No. No. No.

Posted by: Rick

Oh no. Snow. Look what we woke to:

About 2" overnight. 

Monday, September 18, 2017

Game Camera Clips: Lion vs Moose

Posted by: Lynne

We just got back from a ten day trip in the RV down to the Gunnison area. (More on the trip to come.) One of the first things we did was retrieve the game camera cards from various cameras we have set up in different spots on our land. It's always fun to see what animals have been around.

The game camera down by the beaver pond which has captured such things as the strange Ewok owl and coyotes never fails us. This time we got a big black bear and momma moose of momma moose and baby fame. We know this because the baby showed up in consecutive shots. We also caught what we think was probably the same bear at night on the meadow camera on a different day. Lots of bear activity.

Momma was getting a nice big drink of pond water and if you look closely you cansee the water dripping from her mouth. Such a cool shot!

But the consecutive shots that are below are what blew us away! They are not in focus due to running animals, but they tell a story. This camera is just down the hill from the cabin in the bottom of our forest where Bart Creek flows in the spring.

First comes this shot: a mountain lion! Note the date stamps on each photo.

Then came this shot, just a few seconds later. A big moose!

And a few minutes after the moose went in one direction, it was headed back the opposite direction!

Interesting, yes? We think the moose was chasing the lion. So, we can't really identify the moose except that we know it's a female, or cow. No antlers; white anal patch visible in the last photo. Was it momma moose protecting her baby? Quite the story! We never know what the game cameras will catch.

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Encounters of the Bear Kind

Posted by: Lynne

(I am still trying to play catch-up on  my older blog posts!)

We have bears up here but we rarely see them. Other people have reported sightings, and we've caught them on our game cameras that are down by the pond but seeing one around the cabin? No, only once that I can remember and that was years and years ago.

A couple of weeks ago we were driving into town when I spotted a black animal on a hillside. It moved and I said to Rick, that's a bear! It was just a small black bear and when he saw our vehicle he started to run. And let me tell you, that bear could run! 

He ended up running straight down the middle of the road in front of us before he veered off in sage and kept right on running. It was an unusual sight for sure.

The very next morning I got up and opened the curtains, checking out the meadow before I let the dogs out. To my great surprise I saw a bear with two cubs in our yard. I think I casually said to Rick, oh there's a bear in our yard! I guess I was kind of casual about it because it was a very common sight in New Jersey where we lived to see bears in the yard. She looke pretty comfy with the bird feeder pulled to the ground and was munching happily away on bird seed.

One cub was sticking pretty close to mamma, while the other little cub was a bit more brave. I don't think this is the first time this crew has visited since one other time when we were gone for a few days we came home to having the bird feeding station askew (instead of on the ground like this time) and the bird waterer base was unscrewed from the top and on the other side of the fence. As you can see in the pics below, junior is having a great time batting that very same waterer around! Maybe it's really a bear toy?

He was just having a great time using our fence as a balance beam.

I think I'll just walk along here for a little ways ....

Maybe I"ll just kind of sit here for awhile ...

We watched all the silly antics for awhile, just because watching cubs play is so darned cute. They are such little kids! And so smart as well. But, enough was enough and we don't want them feeling comfortable hanging out in our fenced yard, so Rick got the rifle out and went outside to fire it off over their heads to scare them away. I laughed myself silly at the little cub's reaction to Rick coming out of the house.

Whoa, mom ... what the heck is that big white thing?

Time to leave!

And over the fence they went. Well, almost all of them anyway. The littlest cub could not figure out how to get over the fence and was pitifully mewling for mamma, who was by then all the way to the edge of the Ewok Forest, running back and forth next to the fence line. Mamma looked as if she was thinking about coming back for it and I was also just about to go out and open the gate for the poor little thing when it finally figured it out and climbed over and went lickety-split to mamma.

You were adorable bear family but we'd rather you didn't come back for a repeat visit anytime soon!

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