Making the Grade

It can be surprising what you can rent when you really want to.  We had to move some big rocks. This is what we came up with.

Image of a large Catepiller excavator
You too can rent this excavator for around $600 per day. Beats picking up boulders (and trees) by hand! Easier on the back too.

No, it wasn’t me driving; I had some (really great) help with that part.

One task for the excavator was to move some large boulders to form a flat pad at the top of the little knoll above our property, where we hope to place several water tanks.  These will provide us with a gravity-fed source of water, both for domestic use and hopefully also emergency irrigation that can defend against the next wildfire.  Here you can see the excavator at work on the top of the knoll.

Image of an excavator at the top of a small wooded hill
Don’t ask how we got it up there (it wasn’t easy).
Image of a large boulder in the jaws of the excavator
The excavator makes short work of moving large boulders like this one.

After a day or so of excavator work, our new pad was finished!

Image of a dirt road going to the top of a small wooded hill.
Here is the access road to the top of the knoll.
Image of the flat area at the top of the hill
And here is the top of the knoll itself

We now have plenty of room at the top for several water tanks, as well as enough space to turn a truck around too!  I’ll give this grading an A.

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