The Waterfall Project – Part Three

Jenn moving branches

Ever spent three straight hours carrying small trees across a small creek? I have. Day Three of the waterfall project saw us focusing on the far bank of the creek. Of course the brush and trees over there were so thick we couldn’t even GET on the far bank, so that meant approaching it all from creek level.

By day three, we were getting the hang of what tools we needed and were loading up the wagon on the back of the tractor with workers and equipment. That meant taking a big blanket for the kids to chillax on, a chain saw, loppers, pruners, two rakes, a shovel, several sets of work gloves, cardboard and paper from the recycling bin and two lighters.

Also, two kids and two adults. We make quite the convoy all loaded up. Mr W driving, the kids in the wagon with the gear and me standing on the trailer hitch as we wind our way down the fields to the waterfall. But it’s easier and faster than making the five trips it would take otherwise. 🙂

Our plan of attack for day three was basically “saw and drag.” We’d built up the dam well enough that it was pretty easy to walk across it without getting too wet. That meant Mr W would take the chainsaw and loppers to the far bank to start cutting down the trees growing out of the side of the bank.

Mr W with the chainsaw

You can see all the stumps left on the bank…there were a TON of small trees growing up. Once he’d cut them down, they’d end up falling into the pond or across the creek. At this point, I’d come over, grab the base and start dragging them back across the creek and up the bank to the burn pile.

making a burn pile

Cutting goes a little faster than hauling, so Mr W was nice enough to at least get a lot of them turned around so I could just come to the edge of the creek and take over…

taking over the work

Of course some of them were pretty large and pretty heavy and were so entwined with other growth they literally had to be ripped down and dragged across the creek. This required a little more muscle…

dragging branches

On the other hand, some of them were pretty small, especially once we made enough progress for Mr W to get up on the far bank to start using the loppers. That meant we could recruit help from Thing One…

Thing One gets in on the cleanup

Once we got a landing point cleared on the far bank and some of the brush cleared, Mr W had way better access to work his way closer to the waterfall, using the chainsaw on the lower tree growth.

chainsaw for Mr W

As we worked our way across this spot, we realized there was a very nice rock outcrop over the deepest part of the pool. Once we’ve double checked the bottom of the pool and cleared out some of the upright stones, this could be the perfect jumping point for the kids. It’s only about 3 feet off the water and the water is more than three feet deep in this spot.

Of course that meant we were going to need to clear the entire far bank. So Mr W kept working his way through and Thing One and I kept dragging branches. (Thing Two was diligently using the longest stick he could find to “measure” the depth of the water while occasionally popping over to carry branches. Ahh…the life of a five year old.)

the life of a five year old

After about three hours worth of work, we decided it was time to wrap things up. But first, the kids wanted a chance to get up on the far bank and see the view from a different perspective.

a different view of the bank

Of course I look at that picture and all I see is exactly how much brush I’m going to have to rake off the ground to get this bank cleared… But in the meantime, Thing One was working her way across the dam to join us.

Thing One working across

After wandering around for a little while and discussing what we’d need to do on our fourth trip down, I managed to corral them all to the furthest edge of our clearing for a picture.

picture of the clearing

Up next? We’ll work to clear the land behind where this picture was taken. That will allow the kids to walk down either bank to get to either side of the waterfall. We’ll also aim to come down on a warmer day so Mr W and I can get into the pond to start checking out the rock situation.

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