Monday, February 29, 2016

What Happen?

The three month off season is over and I didn't do much. Got caught up in the animal drama under the lodge for three weeks, looked at some more properties to purchase even though I don't want a job, and hung here the last couple weeks getting ready for the "no left hand turns" season. Johnny moved out this morning and Sarah this afternoon. I saw her vehicle stay up on Hurrah for twenty minutes or so before it disappeared down the other side. I know how she feels. I hate to leave this place too. Tomorrow Michelle arrives and there's still a lot to do before the season starts on Thursday.

This evening though, it's quiet. Nobody at the beach or on the river, nobody up at the hogans, and just me and I guess I have a dog (Jax) at Base Camp. I just walked outside to let Jax take a leak before bed and the usual gray fox was across the driveway eating sunflower seeds at the Tiffany's feeding area. The craziest of the ringtails ran across the porch beams upside down, shot down the pole, snatched a hot dog from me, shot back up the pole, where he/she sits and complains for 15 minutes every night. I hear one of the skunks coming from underneath the lodge to below the front porch for it's food and the stars, I don't think I've ever seen them so bright.

Good night from the canyon lands.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Change is Coming

It's been a long time since I've laughed as hard as I did on multiple occasions this winter. Mike, Johnny, Sarah, and myself were quite a combination. I was the only sane one of course with the possible exception of multiple releases of ringtails in the dining room and carrying skunks through the lodge, but, what could go wrong? In my book Johnny was the star. He can tell a story. They're hardly ever true or when true hardly ever accurate but they are funny. Mike would sing to us and make up new words for the song to fit the situation. Sarah always had the look of how did she get herself into this? The critters and the combined thought process between us on how to solve keeping the skunks and ringtails from getting under the lodge was mostly hysterical. Despite, or perhaps because, of all of us put together plans, we failed. Mike flew back to Vermont today. Sarah has been seeking other work in Moab and departs Monday for other housing. Johnny interviewed today for a job in Moab and goes back again tomorrow and after the weekend he'll be moving to Moab also. On Monday night, with the exception of Jax I'll be staying in the lodge by myself for the first time in about two months. Not an average winter. It doesn't last long however as Michelle is finishing up business in Salt Lake and moves in on a permanent basis on Tuesday. Did I mention I have a girlfriend, I guess, and a dog too, and it's about time to go get Kobae? From left to right. Mike, Johnny, Sarah, myself, and Jax.

Just for Grins

I ask Johnny to put the trap down a couple more times just to make sure we have all little people out before we close up the store room and we got the predictable results. There's still an entrance somewhere. Plus, I was reviewing the videos of all the skunk catches and we have one that is hanging very low to the ground. Oh boy, babies coming.

Monday, February 22, 2016


While I was in Salt Lake going to the hockey games with Linny and Michelle, Mike and Johnny caught two more skunks and a ringtail. Returning Sunday evening I heard two more critters under the lodge. Despite ceiling up an unknown number of breaches under the lodge, holes in the walls, cinder blocks missing, and cementing tunnels, they are still getting in. Monday morning Mike and Johnny pulled up the front porch and found ten to twenty more tunnels going under the lodge. I ask them to put the porch back together and forget about it. I don't want to have one of them being a den and we seal it up so I/we will live with it. While there is a cinder block or cement wall all the way around the crawlspace there is not a cement floor so this is an unsolvable problem best we can tell. It's been a fun three week run and we met a lot of little people, some two or three times, but the season is almost here and it's time to start cleaning up.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

R.V. Show

Linny and I spent Saturday at the RV Show. It was crazy. Hundreds of RVs in the building. Most impressive I want to know who drove all those vehicles in there and got them all one inch from each other.

Friday Night Thief

Friday, February 19, 2016

The Anti-Cline

At sunset each day there's a little more light on the Anti-Cline and most of the snow has melted. Hard to believe this winter is mostly gone. The season starts in a couple weeks and it's almost time to go get Kobae.


In Grand and San Juan counties of Utah you can get your zoning changed from business or residential to agriculture if you have an orchard or at least three farm animals. I see mainly donkeys and alpacas. There are three donkeys that I pass by on the way to and from Base Camp. Coming in on Wednesday I saw them putting Clementine's daughter in a trailer to go get her feet worked on. I believe it's the first time that Clementine and her have been separated. She was really mad and stomping around and baying. So after errands I stopped my Village Market to see if I could ease her pain on the way back.

Visitors to the Road

Wednesday Morning

Despite Johnny's argument that underneath the lodge is completely sealed up this is skunk #6. There aren't that many and I'm pretty sure we've caught this one at least twice.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A Change to the Road

On Tuesday I went to town to get concrete for the telescope pad and grill pads. In the Turner Lumber parking lot the truck wouldn't start. I called my friend Lance and we both figured it was the starter so I bought a starter and Lance changed it right in their parking lot. Still didn't start. Maybe it's the battery. So bought a new battery, still wouldn't start. Six or eight people walking by all gave us their suggestions and it was none of those. Had it towed to Nations. With four mechanics working on the mystery cause they found a battery cable that was so long it had been sheered by the front wheel well. Now it's getting dark and too late to get concrete. On the way back I found the road had acquired a couple of guests while I was gone.

Tuesday Morning: Sarah is Pretty Funny

They told me they caught a 4th skunk from under the lodge on Sunday morning and released it. Waking up Tuesday morning and looking down the hatch at the trap the door was closed so here we go again.

Truly The Never Ending Story

I got back to the lodge Monday night about 10pm. When I'd left my domestication of Einstein wasn't going well. I'd spent a night or two, I can't remember, trying to get it to come to me, then trying to get it to leave so everybody else wouldn't be saddled with Einstein while I was gone. When I walked in Mike, Johnny, and Sarah were rearranging the pictures and other things that Einstein had knocked over. He had been caught just that morning and released outside. He spent two full days, maybe three in the living room and kitchen despite doors being open at all times to leave. There were ringtail tracks on the toilet seat, in the toilet, on all the counters and table tops, on window seals, curtains torn, decorative pieces missing it was almost as if there had been an acrobatic Kobae in the lodge for 72 hours. There are decorative pieces missing from the shelve by the covered wagon, a good seven feet off the ground.
The curtains were closed completely now they are open in two places and have tears in them.
There were six Kachina Dolls on this seven foot high shelf above the dining room window and now there are four. The other two are missing.

Head Scarfs

They gave out head scarfs at the game. Two of the three ladies to our left I can understand their head scarf dress. Not so much the third one.

Boys Will Be Boys, Again

On Monday Linny and I went to an afternoon game. A few of the "ladies" in our end kept trying to distract the other teams goalie with offers of friendship and it appeared to work. He was always laughing and gave up four quick goals. On the fifth goal he wasn't smiling anymore and punched the Griz player that scored it and promptly got his ass kicked to the delight of especially our end of the rink.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Hunting and Conservation Show

Linny and I spent Sunday afternoon at the Hunting and Conservation Show.

Boat Show

Linny and I spent Sunday morning at the Boat Show in Salt Lake. We're probably not going to be able to pull off a real estate purchase and a boat purchase at the same time but Linny is a wishing.

Boys Will Be Boys

A Mascot Ate My Camera

Saturday, February 13, 2016

A Picture

There's Another Hole

Einstein went over to the wood pile to sleep after I released him/her in the dining room. Friday evening there was no sign of him but around midnight Jax started barking so I knew something was right outside the door. I walked into the kitchen and heard noise behind the refrigerator.

At 4am Jax started barking again and when I went into the dining room some of the decorations were knocked over. There were two containers of soap in the sink in the bathroom, the living room curtains were torn, and the blinds were knotted. I left the back door wide open and went back to sleep. At 7am Saturday morning Einstein was sleeping back in the wood pile next to the living room stove. Apparently no domestication is needed. Einstein has had plenty of opportunity to depart and has taken none of them. When I left Base Camp at 8am Saturday morning to pick up Linny and do some hockey in Salt Lake, Einstein was still sleeping in the wood pile.


We think there is one more critter left under the lodge and we think it's a ringtail. All the things the other ringtails and skunks fell for getting caught in the trap, this one is not buying. I hung a hot dog from strings in the middle and he somehow got over the trip or leaned over it and ate it from the strings. Johnny put a hot dog behind it and it took the towel off and ate it. Johnny put a hot dog under the cage and it tipped the cage over and ate it. Johnny put a hot dog all the way to the back of the cage and it pulled it out through the bars and Mike put a container with pieces of hot dog strapped in it and it somehow got all the pieces and ate them. This time Johnny put a towel around the cage, a hot dog underneath it and a very heavy rock on top so it couldn't tip it over and it worked.

Now that we've sealed the hole up above the fridge I'm going to try again to domesticate a ringtail.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Something Else

Michelle and I looked at this on Thursday. I like it. I'm going to see Linny over the weekend and we'll talk about it.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Tuesday Night 10:30

Michelle and Jax

It's been a different sort of winter at Base Camp. During winters I go exploring. Sarah showed up to help around the place and we did some hikes together. Mike came in from Vermont to do some work and he's pretty busy. Johnny quit his job at Caveman. I picked him up and he's doing work here.

Michelle and I met two years ago. Michelle came out to the lodge and we spent four or five days hiking and got along really well. We mutually agreed we should do it again. Then she moved to Colorado and I never saw her again. Recently I heard she was back in Salt Lake so a month or so ago I called her and left a message if she wanted to go to a hockey game. I never heard back. Last week in Salt Lake she called and ask if the offer to come out to the lodge was still good. I said it was but I hadn't seen her for two years so perhaps she should come out and spend a few days to see if we still like each other. On Monday she pulled up in a truck with all this stuff. So I guess she decided we still like each other and I guess I have a girlfriend and I guess I have a dog.

The Never Ending Story

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

1am Sunday Morning

Everyone had gone to bed but I was finishing a book and refused to sleep until I finished it. Once I did I decided to check the trap under the lodge and the smaller skunk had fallen for the new plan.

Another New Plan

We reset the trap. Later Johnny went and checked it and a smaller skunk had somehow gotten the hot dog out of the cage and was sitting on top of it eating the hot dog. So, we have another new plan.

Johnny's Story of Catching the Skunk: Graphic Language

Monday, February 8, 2016

Johnny: Saturday Evening

It's Saturday evening and Johnny has just come in the living room to tell Sarah and I there's something in the trap. He's excited. Little bit of language.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

They're Getting Smarter

On Saturday morning I check the cage and the hot dog is gone but there's nothing inside.

Breakfast at Tiffanys

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Just Some Pics


At 11:45pm, one half hour later, I was sitting in the living room reading when I heard a noise under the back porch. Two minutes later I heard something walking around in the insulation right under me. I threw a hot dog down in the crawl space and when I looked in the morning it was gone. This story is not yet over.

Here We Go Again

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

It's Not Over

3pm Wednesday afternoon and I can hear a ringtail moving around right under my office in the insulation. The plan after the next plan is this. I've put a hot dog all the way in the back of it and hoping a ringtail goes in and gets it, steps on the plate and the door closes. I've got one shot at it. While ringtails are bat shit crazy, they aren't stupid.