Brother Dear speaks.
Woke up this morning, had you on my mind. Sounds like the blues, right? Yesterday, we woke up to the oft-witnessed gray-blue morning of a chilly little snowstorm here in Glacier County, as Courtney mentioned. We had legal clients on our minds . . . but, the weather was bad and getting worse, so we opted for a day of things-that-needed-doing around Hillhouse over whiteout-in-the-wind between here and Cut Bank.
We only got 5 or 6 inches, but it drifted in pretty good around Hillhouse. A couple passes with Dad’s rear mounted tractor snowplow made short work of all that. The ole John Deere performed very nicely, so hopefully we’ll be able to get out all winter, no matter what. That two-wheel-drive can be a little tricky going up hills, pulling snow behind you, though, so we’ll have to get a heavier snow to really see where we stand. Anybody got some old tractor-tire chains they aren’t using?
Once the road was clearish, we all set to work on various projects in the warehouse. Courtney poured candles and ornaments while decked out in a coat and stocking cap . . . and flip flops. She seems to really like that radiant floor heat. Greg framed kitchen cabinets and did some plumbing. I finished up my brand-spanking-old storm door.
The “new” one is on the left. The “old” was a faithful, and necessary, part of the cabin since I’ve lived there and helped to keep the cabin cool in the summer and warmish in the winter. Unfortunately, it got hit by a stray gust of wind (which it had always handled with calm, if somewhat violent aplomb) and was bent all to Canada and back, if you know what I mean. I took it down, fixed all the bent parts I could, and then rehung it with some neat ole hinges from the Bar X Six. They were a little too “ole” and two days later the hinges themselves got bent all the way to Canada and ripped the inside of the door at a rather awful angle. Time for a new door.
The picture doesn’t really do it justice, but the MDF under all that cheap vinyl was fairly unfixable. Plus, it was a little too modern for the “Chief Mountain House” anyways.
So this is my new door. I salvaged some of the hardware from the old door, mainly the spring-handle, the main plate of insulated glass (and the framed screen, which I will pop in for a couple months next summer), and the aluminum edges. Although the frame of the door is just plywood that I cut to size and then rabbeted out space for the glass window, the fascia is clearly the main attraction here. I was at the Babb dump a couple years ago, taking out the trash, when I saw a roll of old fencing. The fencing was twisted wire with a 1.5 inch wide strip of weathered, once-red planking every few inches. Greg told me today that he and his dad used to use the same stuff for fencing in beeyards, and several neighbors around Duck Lake have it outside their houses. This particular fence was very old, but the wood worked great for a couple picture frames that I sold at Babb’s own Duck Lake Lodge. (Happy Anniversary, Terry and Allen!) I think it makes a pretty nice door too, but the next one is gonna have to be ripped and sanded Aspen . . . but this isn’t too bad for finding the materials in the trash!
Buck was not very helpful during any of our projects. Cain doesn’t really enjoy two-feet-deep snowdrifts. Roy enjoyed himself thoroughly, but was no more helpful than the other hounds.
This photo is a preview of my next non-paying project. It’s going to be a work of art. And science. And only used when there is a foot or so of ice on Duck Lake. C’mon out and visit if you want to (fish and) listen to satellite radio in a lighted, heated, and all-in-all awesome Honeycutt Rodeo icehouse.
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