The Road!

When it rains, it pours!

We showed up on the first planned day of work and it was absolutely pouring with rain.  The workers showed up and got their van stuck in the mud.  It took us 20 minutes to get the van out and that was the end of our first day of work.  It was clear that if we wanted to be able to get in and out of the plot when it was raining and get materials delivered we were going to have to fix the road.  We hadnt planned to do the road so this was the first of our unexpected costs.

We got recommended a machine driver by our friendly neighbour and so we called him in to see what he suggested.  He suggested to dig down 30cm lay some stone and then pour gravel over the top to level and for the final finish.  With that we wouldnt have any more problems.

Ohh yes, we started work again three weeks later as that’s how long it took to stop raining.  When it rains it pours!!

Waste is just something you havent figured out a use for.

We were a bit worried about the cost of this as there was about 250m of road plus 150square metres of parking to dig and fill.  It was going to need a lot of material.  Luckily we demolished the inside of the building which was mainly sandstone and that made a big pile of rubble to put down as a base.  This was a great use for it anyway as otherwise we would have had to pay for it to be taken to landfill somewhere else.  Here it stays on our land and we turn a waste product into something useful.

Dirt Dug

First stones laid

Waiting for gravel

One man´s waste is another man´s gold!

We got the rest of the stones from a neighbours field who has been clearing them  for years while ploughing.

First load of free stones

More free stones!

Then we had some special sand and gravel mix for roads delivered to finish off the job.


I had to spend hours raking it to get a nice flat finish and spread the gravel evenly but I’m happy with it now.

I found another great use for a pallet while thinking about ways to spread the gravel evenly.  I tied a rope to either end of a pallet making a loop.  Put it with the slats face down and tied a heavy brick to the top.
Next i put the loop around my waist and ran up and down the track.  The pallet dug in where there was too much gravel and accumulated the surplus in a mound on top of the slats which then emptied as I went over an uneven bit.  Unfortunately I thought of this right at the end but it saved me some work and levelled everything nicely.  I got some funny looks from the neighbours driving by , don’t know what they must have been thinking seeing me running around like a plough animal dragging that pallet.  Its multiple functions too as I levelled my road and got a good workout.  Nothing like pushing or dragging something heavy to get your heart rate going!

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