As an ongoing process, Grandpa and I have been making small stashes of logs that we feel would be suitable for beams for our sauna or cabin. At the moment, our plan is to have 3" wide and 4" tall beams to make up the walls of the sauna, and 5" wide and 4" tall beams for the walls of the cabin. These plans are still very much in flux, but that's what we have in our heads right now.
Yesterday I cut down two more trees that were shading our solar panels. One very important thing to note about solar panels, that I don't think has ever been made expressly clear enough to the public (well, to me anyway) is that the amount the panel is shaded is not at all proportional to the output of the panel. That is to say, if a tree shades 10% of a 100 watt panel, you don't get 90 watts - you get about 10 watts - if that! It basically reverts the entire panel to the lowest producing segment. So shade on your panel isn't just a nuisance, it's a downright enemy.
There are a few trees that I'm willing to allow to shade the panel - jack pines exclusively, and a single spruce that is already supporting our water line, but otherwise, having light and power is a fairly high priority.
After bucking it up into firewood and a single log, I did the same with another spruce nearby. Then it was time to bring in the tractor and my new winch.
With Grandpa's supervision I was able to use the full 94' of winch cable to bring it up to within 10' of my log pile. That's where the tractor battery gave out - the winch draws LOTS more power than the old one. So, I suppose I have to look into purchasing a much larger battery for the tractor. Oh well, at least I can winch over 80 feet at a time. I have to remember to also leave enough juice in the tractor to reel in the winch cable when I'm finished - it would be hard to wind up by hand!
We went for a walk to some unexplored areas of our property later in the afternoon, but not without Kenny first checking out my growing log pile at the skidway. We still have lots of logs to go, but the hardest part of any project is starting!