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Tested in the Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here are some of the new pics taken last summer on and near my BOL = remote mtn retreat. Some taken by Steve, one out of two 25 year old guys who camped on and near my mtn BOL last summer and quite a few taken by myself >

First I would like to ask a question and hope to get some more ideas on how to remove a large rock from the hole that I have been digging on the sunny hillside near the middle of my mtn retreat.
Steve also dug one day for a few hours. I think the large rock inspired him to dig much since he wanted to see how large it is. But only the bottom half of this large rock is shown in this pic.
It is probably at least 12 feet maybe even longer by 6 or so feet wide. Next summer I will measure it exactly after it all has been dug out. But the hardest part will be removing this large rock which is right in the middle of the area where I want and need to build my new partially underground cabin, which I hope to mostly complete by Oct. 2012. >

This is a pic of the hole showing a large rock that will be difficult to remove. I was thinking of using a winch and / or come-a-long / powerpull to remove the rock. First I might have to split that rock which is about 6 feet wide by 12 or more feet long. I can use chisels and even a pry bar to split the rock.

I have a few ideas on how to remove the large rock but would like to see even more.
Anyone who has more ideas on how to remove this rock please post them.



Mike looking into bear's den that is a few hundred feet above my mtn land. It was a fox den for years until the black bear took it over a couple years ago>



That pic reminded me of this one but I did not want to stick my head inside the bear's den >





Steve in front of snowdrift that was plowed thru on July 2, 2011>



Snowcave that Steve dug into the 12 foot drift a couple days before it was plowed. This was dug on June 30 and July 1, 2011. I told Steve this was his best chance to practice digging a snow cave >



Snowcave looking out from the inside >





Mike opening up culvert on / under his private road >




Mike just opened up the culvert and water is gushing out >



Mike barely got out of the way as water is gushing out of the culvert >




Mike driving his truck towards his driveway for the first time that summer on July 5th, 2011 >



Driving the truck up the muddy driveway and across main spring >




One of my storage boxes with ten cardboard boxes of food >



Mike splitting wood at one of several wood piles on his land >




Filling Big Berkey drip water filter with water gotten from spring >



Filling water bottle from bottom of Berkey filter. >



Mike holding 14 inch trout that Steve caught but he did not want to eat it. Notice the knife I am also holding which I used to clean the trout >





One of 2 springs and well camoflaged woodshed at top of pic >



Cleaning up some near the back trap door >


Looking down onto the top of the back trap door of the bunker >


In case some missed this pic in the past this is a better pic of the back trap door showing 3 foot thick rock and concrete roof. Took 250 eighty pound bags of concrete mix to make the concrete roof. >



Other side of the bunker / storm shelter which faces away from the private dirt road and notice the 200 foot extension cords that run from the solar panels into the bunker >



Standing in front of the front black steel door with elk backbone hanging near door and with the sunglasses flipped up >


Inside the bunker getting ready to look out the porthole which has a view of the private dirt road about 150 feet down the mountain >



Neighbors trout pond half a mile downhill where Steve and Glen caught some fish, with the neighbor's permission >



Silver Lake which is 3 miles NW of my mtn land and where Steve and Glen hiked to one day. They did not fish here though since it is possible a game warden was watching, although it is remote and except on weekends unlikely to be a game warden around. I have also hiked and driven to this lake quite a bit since 1987.
There is an old mine shaft just above this lake which I looked into once but did not go into since I was by myself. Water was running out of that mine.





I know a few have seen these pics but here is a long thread with many more pics of what happened last summer on and near my remote mtn retreat / BOL >>> http://www.survivalistboards.com/showthread.php?t=207664

Many more pics in the next thread or two also. The next post will have pics of my and a neighbor's solar setup.
 

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Tested in the Wilderness
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6,709 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
This is my solar setup and also a neighbor's who I work for sometimes.
>

Solar panels on sunny hillside on top of tree stump

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Solar panel box with batteries, controller and inverter >
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[/QUOTE]



The above pic shows the hole I am digging for my new partially underground cabin with a view of the Snowy Range to the east. And the 3 solar panels I set on a tree stump so they are about 4 feet above ground and even when it snows in October and Nov. I can use them. The deep snow above 4 feet is usually not until December.
I plan to set solar panels even up to 20 feet above the ground. As seen below of a neighbor's solar panel on a tree >









Here is the solar panel box on the tree >




And the controller box and inverter inside the cabin >




Closeup of the lightning arrestor on the wiring box >



Empty cement hole - container for the solar batteries >






And the 4 batteries in the cement container underground that store the energy from the solar panels >




As people can see the neighbor's solar set-up is much more elaborate and expensive than mine. Last summer he even set up one more large solar panel mainly because his place is in the shade quite a bit and he wanted more when he goes up there in the winter, maybe every other month. He spends more time up there in the summer since he is a professor at a NE university.

My panels are only 15 watts and the 3 total 45 watts which is plenty since I only use electricity mainly for my tracfone and some radios. Sometimes for lights but that is mostly after Labor Day when the nights are getting longer.
My solar set up is a "cheap" Harborfreight one but it must be pretty good since it has worked well for 4 summers now. Although my 12 volt deep cycle Deka RV marine battery seems to have died just before I left late last October. So I must get another one. I almost always have just the one battery with the solar although I have also tried to use a car battery sometimes. But the RV deep cycle battery is best with solar.

There is also a voltage - small metal controller box to plug in the panel wires etc. to although I should get a new and better one of those also.
I also bought a 400 watt inverter but have a 1,200 watt inverter just in case I need more power but have not used that yet.

I also have a 3500 watt gas generator but it is at least 10 years old and needs some work. I have hardly used the gas generator since I got the solar panels 4 years ago.
 

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Premium Member
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Thanks for posting more great pics MtmnMike, I always enjoy seeing them! I'm sorry, but I have no good suggestions for you to try about getting the rock out of the ground, but I'm interested to hear about how you end up doing it!
 

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Sic semper tyrannis.
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8,437 Posts
Thanks for the pics , looks like a super sweet getaway.

As far as that rock goes, I'm no expert...

Chisels and hammers?
Pneumatic jackhammer?
Drill heavy duty anchors into it and then pull it with cable and a tractor?

Who knows how large and deep that boulder is, breaking it up might make it more manageable and a good option so you can use the raw materials your land.
 

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For the rock, you have three options as far as I see it without getting a lot of machinery in:

1. Digging bar - 6 foot, 2 inch thick steel bar. Maybe take a week of solid work, if you have not get arthritis in your shoulders and elbows now, you will have at the end along with a whole host of other joint and tendon problems.

2. Explosives. This depends on the laws around who is allowed to buy and use explosives in your location / state. You are better placed to know this than me.

3. Fire and water. Build as big and as hot a fire you can on the rock you have exposed. Once the rock is as hot as you think you can get it, quench with as much water you can get on it. More is most definatly better. This is an ancient quarrying techniqe, it was used to quarry stone in Africa before they had metal tools that could work rock. I think the city of Jeno-Jeno was built this way. This tecnique could take days to a week or two, but its the way I would go if I could get enough water on the rock once it was hot.

Just make sure the surrounding rock is not coal and the soil is not peat (which it does not look like) otherwise your mountain could burn down!
 

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Tested in the Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
neato,...

but why does Mike refer to himself in the third person? lol


tannerite for the big rock ,...or this stuff:

http://www.sportsmansguide.com/net/...t-exploding-shooting-target-mix.aspx?a=891182

10-20 lbs would prolly shatter that rock...
That is the 2nd time I have heard of tannerite. I do get a lot of messages from some who don't want to post but they do pm me.
I also have heard about various explosives and how to make them. Which is interesting but I probably won't do explosives. Mainly it is probably too expensive and potentially dangerous. IF there was an accident then the nearest doctor and hospital are in Rawlins, WY about 60 miles to the north.

I am thinking of moving the rock with a good winch or at least a couple come-a-longs also known as power pulls. I do have chains etc. to be able to move the rock. I will probably tell more of my ideas also that I may or may not do.

And thanks Skeptical, now I feel like I should go back and change my posts. But I refer and post Mike, such as Mike driving his truck, mainly because I don't want to post I all the time. And to make it perfectly clear that the one driving or doing some things is Mike and not Steve or someone else.
Or I could just have a split personality, whatever any want to believe...

And Mr. Borsch I will respond to your good post a little later. I should research Jeno-Jeno and some other things you brought up...
 

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Tested in the Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Mike -- I am very impressed and you seem to be living the dream life up there..... except for that snowpack last year........ congratulations and good luck
I do like camping, working and Living like few in today's modern suciety ever get to live, more than living / existing in a city.

And I like snowpack more than mud. I have never gotten stuck or high centered with any of my several 4x4 vehicles the past 30 plus years more than a couple hours of shoveling. But my truck did get stuck in the muck / mud for 6 days and in an expensive way which I tell about in detail in this long pic thread > http://www.survivalistboards.com/showthread.php?t=207664
One pic from the above link to show how my truck was stuck >




Thanks for the pics , looks like a super sweet getaway.

As far as that rock goes, I'm no expert...

Chisels and hammers?
Pneumatic jackhammer?
Drill heavy duty anchors into it and then pull it with cable and a tractor?

Who knows how large and deep that boulder is, breaking it up might make it more manageable and a good option so you can use the raw materials your land.
I might use chisels and a sledgehammer.
Not a pneumatic jackhammer which would take a lot of power, probably much electricity which I doubt I would have enough of that even if I could obtain a jackhammer. Maybe a gasoline powered jackhammer if they make them? I think they are powered with air pressure? Never have used one and doubt I ever will.
And they I am sure, are very heavy.

If people don't know, I will now tell that where I am digging is up high on the mountainside and would take a winch to take any heavy stuff up there. It was not easy even carrying the heavy 12 volt battery etc. up the mountain to where my solar panels are, as seen in post #2.

I will let people know how I do finally remove the large rock but that probably won't be until I go back up there sometime in June. I will post sometimes during the summer whenever I go to the small town library, 12 miles down the mountain, to use their internet.

And you also said that I have a super sweet getaway.
I think the main reason that it is a good BOL / retreat / vacation / work area is because of the location. It has an abundance of wood, water and wildlife not to mention some beauty >>>>



These two were taken on my way back to the stinkin city - Greeley, CO after I left my mtn retreat in late October 2011 >

I had to lay on my stomach onto the frozen ground to get the lake and the mountains in this pic, the things I do for you all on the net :thumb: >



and this one shows my old brown tough Ford truck parked in a parking area far above looking down on this lake ( Lake Marie ) which I just showed in the previous pic. In the past I have climbed to the top of a couple of the high mtns looking down also on this area in southern Wyoming >




And I have said before that even IF the S never Hits the Fan, then I have a good retreat to work, play and Live in. And hope to share it with a few others this summer and in coming years.

Here is a good view looking down on my private dirt road which this pic was taken only a few feet above my bunker on the hill side. >




And a nearby fishing lake which helps show some of the beauty in my mountain area >



Sunset on the Continental Divide a mile or so west of my mtn place >
 

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Hey Mike,

I think this may be your answer to the big rock...

never heard of this company but good a illustration of how easy it is.
http://demolitiontechnologies.com/

I have sold this stuff before. Works great. Adhesive Technologies is in Pompano Beach, Florida. Ask for Armondo....I'm sure he will be happy to ship you the right quantity for the job.

http://www.atc.ws/concretedemolition.html
 

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Tested in the Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I will eventually respond to more of the posts but first I must add some more pics >

The pic was taken in 1940 but the cabin / dugout was probably built a few years earlier.



I think it is still possible to build very inexpensive cabins / dugouts etc. although the cost of land would be the biggest expense, if people don't own land now.

I have what I call an underground cabin although years ago it would have been called a dugout which many lived in until they were able to afford something better, if they ever were. Even in the 1930's I have read of people living in dugouts and some still do today.

I use this mainly for secure storage and as a storm / blizzard shelter but quite a few call it a bunker >



And I don't know why so many call my underground cabin / dugout / bunker crude and even worse since it looks quite a bit like this one which is another view of the 1940 dugout >



Although mine in the following pic is much more camoflaged and deeper and I think stronger since it has survived up to 12 feet of snowpack since 1996 when I first put on the roof.



The above pic shows me cleaning up around the back trap door and to the right are the plants on top of the bunker...


Hope people don't miss the pics in post #10.

Also here are a few pics Steve took of a chipmunk at his campsite on my mtn place >





But one more reason I had to tell Steve to leave the end of July was when he did this to the poor chipmunk!! I really didn't need any stoned chipmunks running around my mtn place. kidding sorta >

 

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Survivalist
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A dug out usually refers to something built into the side of a hill or into the ground with one side exposed or used as the entry. Often in the old days a dug out was very simple and made of adobe or wood.

A bunker is usually a reinforced structure consisting of cement and rebar, thus why I refer my place as an above ground bunker.

Your place would probably be more along the lines of an underground natural bunker since the materials are mostly trees (logs) and other such recycled stuff. Think your porthole is an only steel water fitting.

What are the interior dimensions of your place there mike? I see the image of you standing inside the door but I haven’t seen a picture of you actual living space or where you lay your head to sleep. Can you post some of those images as I am curious as to the lay out.
 

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Tested in the Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
A dug out usually refers to something built into the side of a hill or into the ground with one side exposed or used as the entry. Often in the old days a dug out was very simple and made of adobe or wood.

A bunker is usually a reinforced structure consisting of cement and rebar, thus why I refer my place as an above ground bunker.

Your place would probably be more along the lines of an underground natural bunker since the materials are mostly trees (logs) and other such recycled stuff. Think your porthole is an only steel water fitting.

What are the interior dimensions of your place there mike? I see the image of you standing inside the door but I haven’t seen a picture of you actual living space or where you lay your head to sleep. Can you post some of those images as I am curious as to the lay out.
The dimensions of the bunker are at least 20 feet long by about 8 feet wide and up to 9 feet deep. It is deepest in the back under the back trap door. I had to make the bunker / underground shelter those dimensions since I used the plans from the book "Nuclear War Survival Skills" > http://www.oism.org/nwss/s73p933.htm
although I also used quite a few of my own ideas such as 2 strong metal doors, a hopefully unbreakable plastic window and several steel beams, much rebar etc. All obtained for free and with permission from a factory that was being demolished in the 1990's.

I do have a few pics of the interior if I can find them and the bunk bed of my bunker but here is a video that some might like to see. The last couple minutes show the inside of my bunker / underground cabin / shelter if people wish to see my storage and bunk bed which in the video has quite a bit stuff still on it since I was using it as storage. I sleep on the bunk bed usually after Oct. first when it gets colder and snowier >

The first couple minutes of this video are not too good because it is too much of me talking but the last 5 or so minutes is a good walk thru showing about half of my BOL / retreat and bunker >



Here is at least one photo of the main room of my bunker which shows the ceiling, the ladder I can use to get out the back and the top of the bunk bed with much stored on top such as guns wrapped in plastic among other things. >


There are more pics of the bunker etc. here > http://mtnmanmike.angelfire.com/mtnmanmikesretreat/index.album/beginning-of-my-private-road?i=0

And the Everything about Bunkers thread and where I tell exactly how I built my bunker is here with many pics. Later in the thread others also tell about their bunkers etc. > http://www.survivalistboards.com/showthread.php?t=107463
 

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Tested in the Wilderness
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
For the rock, you have three options as far as I see it without getting a lot of machinery in:

1. Digging bar - 6 foot, 2 inch thick steel bar. Maybe take a week of solid work, if you have not get arthritis in your shoulders and elbows now, you will have at the end along with a whole host of other joint and tendon problems.

2. Explosives. This depends on the laws around who is allowed to buy and use explosives in your location / state. You are better placed to know this than me.

3. Fire and water. Build as big and as hot a fire you can on the rock you have exposed. Once the rock is as hot as you think you can get it, quench with as much water you can get on it. More is most definitly better. This is an ancient quarrying techniqe, it was used to quarry stone in Africa before they had metal tools that could work rock. I think the city of Jeno-Jeno was built this way. This technique could take days to a week or two, but its the way I would go if I could get enough water on the rock once it was hot.

Just make sure the surrounding rock is not coal and the soil is not peat (which it does not look like) otherwise your mountain could burn down!
Thanks for the good informative post BDG.

I could not get a lot, if any machinery onto my mtn land even if I really wanted to.
First, the hole I am digging for the new cabin, is at least 50 feet above the private dirt road, up on my sunny hillside.

And the closest anyone can park is almost 200 feet from the hole, on my driveway.

And then people have to hike from where they parked over a spring, through thick trees and then up the hill / mtnside.

And then it is a fairly steep hillside. If any have looked at all the pics even just in this thread, they can see what I mean.

I do have a 6 foot digging bar, pry bars, various shovels, two picks and other things to dig the hole.
I have some experience digging and removing smaller rocks since all of the summer of 1995 I dug the 20 x 8 foot x 9 foot deep hole for the bunker, completely by myself. My bunker is about 30 feet from the new hole with the large rock in it.

I most likely will not use explosives since they are probably expensive, not too easy to find or buy unless maybe I were able to buy something on the net. I never buy anything on the net, except for this internet connection.
And they are potentially dangerous. If someone got hurt then the nearest doctor and hospital is at least 60 miles north in Rawlins, Wyoming, over some rugged terrain.

And what you posted about fire and water is what I have been wanting to see. I have liked about everything everyone has posted with their ideas, although anything that costs dollars is less likely for me to do. For various reasons but mainly I have many other things to spend the limited dollars I do have.

The nearest peat is at least 3 miles away with a creek running through it.
There is nothing to burn in the hole. There are some roots but I would remove those and they would burn fast if they burned. They have been dead for a few years now.

And the rock in the hole is a large conglomerate. Maybe next summer I can get close up pics.
The minerals and rocks in the hole and the mountain are mostly copper ore, red granite, some quartz and a few others.

Sometime next summer I will post pics, even a video if possible, whenever I would go down to the nearest town which has a library and use their internet.
 

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I went on 2 workcamps to Peru to help build a church on the side of a mountain. We had some large rocks to remove. The guys from the U.S. wore themselves out with sledge hammers and chisels trying to break it. We saw no progress other than a few small chips. The locals came with kerosene torches and water. They would spend hrs. heating the rock, splash some water on it to get some hair line cracks. They might spend 1/2 hr. studying the rock and give it one whack at an exact spot with all they had. It would split in half. They spent several days but got them broke up and out of there.
 

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Bear Magnet
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Too bad your guests didn't have the wits to get a fishing license Mike. Silver Lake and some others up there are loaded with brook trout.

We're having a real blizzard up here right now. I'm going skiing!
 

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Dear MtmnMike:

As always, your pictures are a joy to see, and your comments a pleasure to read.

Was thinking about your rock... I could not see how steep the hillside was where your rock was, but perhaps this would work. If it is steep enough, dig enough dirt out from below the rock and let it roll down the hill. After you got enough dirt from around it's base, you could always encourage it to roll with levers and winches.

I'll keep thinking ...

Best wishes
Respectfully,
 
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