The weather hates me.

We had four downpours Saturday morning, one after another. Judging from the way the washes behaved they were centered right here and also to the south, not so much to the east which would have made our wash flood. It did run, of course, but only because all the gullies were waterfalls and the water had to go somewhere.

mud2
Poor Jeep. Mud will be flaking off this thing from now until the next time it gets mud-covered, which will most likely be sometime in December or January.

siltditch
There’s a big ash deposit in the gully behind the Lair. Sometimes when the water’s really running there’ll be a mudslide at that deposit, and then I know I’ll have to shovel out the drainage ditch. Again.

My biggest concern here was that the gray water pipe outlet had gotten silted up, which would mean I have to clear that before I can use my sink. In this case fortunately the silt came up to just below that pipe, but didn’t plug it.

driveway
This is the end of my driveway, where it joins with the wash. Three weeks ago that just washed away, leaving me with a drop-off with a nice big rock at the bottom. Not taking the Jeep there.

But I was still okay if I just went off to the left of the driveway a bit, around a juniper, where the drop-off was a bit less vertical. That spot is also the outlet for another gully that empties next to the driveway…

gully1
…and when that gully runs hard it blasts a nice big ditch through all the sand and silt that the last flood deposited, right through my alternate driveway.

delta2
Look at all that sand. Really, for all that I do love it, sometimes I have to concede that this is a ridiculous place to live.

So I’m basically cut off from the wash until the end of Monsoon, call it the middle of the month, when it’ll probably be safe for Neighbor D to come out here with his loader-backhoe and build me a new driveway apron. Last year he pushed sand down from the top to make a new ramp, but this time the driveway has receded enough that I don’t believe that approach will provide enough sand to cover that damned big rock, which is too big and too deep for me to remove. For all I know it’s ten feet down; just the part that shows above the surface is too big for the Jeep to tow even if I could free it. So there’s nothing to do but haul a bunch of sand from elsewhere in the wash and rebury it – till the next flood.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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17 Responses to The weather hates me.

  1. Ben says:

    Explosives Joel, explosives.

  2. Andrew says:

    What Ben said. Suitable use for black powder or actual dynamite. Or for whatever weird stuff Ian can get his hands on.

    If so, video please! Just label it as a mucking big Tannerite kaboom.

    If not for the children, then for us adults who haven’t grown up.

  3. John says:

    What Ben and Andrew said. Video yes. For the children.

  4. Norman says:

    Random thought: What kind of trailer hitch does the Jeep have? If it’s a 2 inch frame-mounted, there might be a way to attach a jeep-width (60″?) drag blade for moving (some) sand (the blades are standard tractor accessories, available in 12″ increments from 4 ft to 8 ft, 5 ft the most common). It wouldn’t be a front bucket on a diesel tractor by any means, but there may be situations where a dozen+ passes of 3″ each could move enough to restore access, or at least make access easier, or produce a “preferred path” for water to use that might not destroy the driveway access.

  5. Mark Matis says:

    If you go the “BIG BAG” route, take a long bar and drive it diagonally under one end of the rock. Remove the rod, put your “BOOM!” medicine in the resulting hole, along with one end of a fuse. Fill the rest of the hole with dry dirt to the extent possible to contain the explosion. Light fuse and run.

  6. Mark Matis says:

    Of course that should be BANG”, not BAG”.

  7. Zelda says:

    Oh for sure the big bang. And lots of photos, a video. Not sure about the run part. Maybe a really long fuse?

  8. Ben says:

    Or an Estes rocket ignitor and a long wire.

  9. If the rock is really huge, you may be able to shatter the upper part…that would take a surprisingly small charge of BP…using a hammer drill to put a 1/2″ hole 12-18″ into the top, filling it with BP, and tamping with a few sand bags should nicely shatter the top of the rock…if not, it may split it, so it can be dug out, or you may have to repeat the operation at ground level a couple of times. I would be shocked if you don’t have a couple of quarrymen or blasters in your list of readers who could point out exactly how.

    Alternatively, if you have time and the desert drops down far enough below freezing in the winter, you can drill holes and let water (ice) do the work for you.

  10. DT says:

    Piling on the bang solution.

    “There are very few personal problems that cannot be solved through a suitable application of high explosives”.

    Even if the rock is massive, blowing a hunk of it off would be easier to move and make it easier to periodically fill a hole rather than level a hump. Plus, explosions!

  11. Joel says:

    ‘Tis an interesting suggestion, verily do I concede. Maybe next year after the rock inevitably reappears and I have demonstrated my amazing precautionary skills by acquiring the materials needed to convert the top of the rock to rubble. I don’t currently happen to have any of that stuff, so I just plan to rebury it.

  12. Who...Me? says:

    If explosives are to be involved at some point it is usually a good idea to also involve someone that actually knows what they are doing to the process. Precludes the very possible sad story at the end.

    Just sayin.

  13. Mark Matis says:

    I would think that a Forgotten Weapons consultation might be sufficient.

  14. Joel says:

    Hey, there’s only one person here that I know has attended a demolitions class, and it isn’t Gun Jesus. Granted that that was a very long time ago, I am still perfectly capable of drilling and tamping a powder charge to crack a rock. In fact the one time we did that here I’m the one who set up the shot. Which worked perfectly. So.

    But that was several years ago, when I had some actual blasting powder and (a very very short length of) fuse. Shelf life and hydrophilic chemistry befalls us all.

  15. Mark Matis says:

    Well even if he has not been properly trained, if you’re gonna have Gun Jesus light the fuse again, a consultation in advance might still be appropriate.

  16. JayNola says:

    You could probably get his patreon folowers to underwrite the endeavor. “Donate extra to watch Ian run away from an imminent explosion!!!”

  17. JayNola says:

    Or do a Bangalore torpedo episode?

To the stake with the heretic!