Saturday, June 24, 2017


It's a big deal that so many take for granted. Last time I was in San Diego picking up Kobae I went to get a drink of water and despite having lived in that house for 20 plus years I ask daughter Heather, "Where do you get your water?" Not sure if I could drink out of the sink or not. She hesitated and looked at me and I remembered how easy it is most places.

Not so here. At the lodge there are three kinds of water. Sink water comes from the well part way down the driveway, only 88 feet deep. But it's salty. You can shower, dishes, laundry and stuff like that. If you drink, make ice cubes, or cook with it, make sure it's something you want with salt. I have jugs on the front porch that I haul drinking water in from town when I go pick up critter food. Then there are the cisterns on each side of the lodge that collect rain water off the roof that I use for watering the plants along the porch and the cottonwood tree. This time of year the cottonwood tree takes six buckets of water per night to keep from shedding leaves. It takes less than a month to drain both cisterns in the summer of 90 to 100 every day.

Next door at Last Hurrah (part of Base Camp) water is pumped from the river into a pond just below the upper house. After settling for a few days back down the hill to a settling tank. From the settling tank through two commercial filters, a huge sand filter, and a house filter, into two holding tanks, and then to usage in the houses and hogans. You can overflow the settling tank if you're not watching the gauges. You can run out of water in the settling tank as you're pumping it into the holding tank and ruin the pump, if you're not watching the gauges. There are two holding tanks, at different elevations. You can link them together but if you're not watching you can flood the lower house and if you're sloppy of the whole process you can do all those things at the same time.

For the last three or four days I've been experimenting with different size hoses, different pumps, different start and stop times, trying to find a system that ran on it's own so I'm not captive standing there watching pressure valves and gauges light up and go dark and finally I made it through six hours of pumping with no lights coming on and I believe I now have such a system. There is also a tank in the garage to wash vehicles and use the shower if you get any chemicals on you. It's full. The settling tank is full. Both holding tanks are full. The pond is full. Since I've got the hoses strung I took my motorcycle ramps, put them on the tailgate and pushed the big brown tank up into the back of the truck and went over to pump water out of the pond, fill up the tank, return and have now filled up the cisterns.

I will never take turning on the tap at any sink without appreciating the luxury.

1 comment:

cyn said...

Wow. Never knew.