We’re contributing to the local economy by meeting an essential human need for warmth — selling firewood from deadfall at Lone Bobcat Woods. In the past month we’ve cut and split large and small dead down oak trees (yes, we’re leaving plenty for habitat and food for the soil). Still dependent on petroleum, though, for chainsaw gas and to deliver the firewood.
How did we spend our summer? Doing woods work. Massive thinning of a slope along the South Yuba River canyon —to reduce wildfire danger and gain a peek at the other side of the canyon. We’ve given away cedar poles and hundreds more remain. There are piles of rounds and limbs, now seasoning to become next year’s firewood.
We love living mostly outdoors. Gentle warm days eating lunch in the incense cedar shade, hearing the red-shouldered hawks (a noisy newcomer to the Sierra foothills) and Syncopated Raven (whose calls are really are a complex syncopated rhythm) and spouse.
The end of summer was declared last night with a great exclamation mark! The first storm of the season arrived, a cold rainy winter storm. So yesterday we covered 15 woodpiles with plastic, closed the electrical conduit trench bringing power from the solar panels, and stored the summer outdoors furniture.
It’s a big shift. We’ll miss the sweetness of summer, while welcoming the interiority of winter.
P.S. I posted this in the morning. That afternoon and evening we had a local tornado warning — the first in memory, even of the old timers. One funnel cloud was indeed sighted, with lots of tree debris. This storm marked not only the precipitous end of summer, but also extreme weather brought on by climate chaos.