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Here is the high altitude view of the area surrounding Kazekan. I want to tell you before you ask that we have thought of every conceivable method of getting stuff in there. I have had a couple of decades to think about it. So let me answer your questions before you embarrass yourself by asking:

  • Helicopter. This conveyance, when I first looked into it, cost $1200 per hour. It had limited payload (750 lbs) and would have taken a few days to get everything in. For that kind of money, I could buy the whole karate club a new gi and dinner for helping out. However, see the Phoenix Project.
  • Road. Part of the charm of our cabin and Kazekan is that you cannot reach it by road. Once you see the terrain, you will appreciate that the cost of building a road would be prohibitive. Also, who wants other people driving in?
  • ATV. Personally, I loathe ATVs. They tear up the terrain, they are noisy and I don't want them around. While an ATV trail would be easier to build than a road, it would still require a great deal of work. "I bet I could get an ATV in there, " you are thinking. Well, sure. And people have. But there is a big difference between just getting in there and carrying a whole load of plywood on a trailer.
  • Snow machine. Like the ATV, these have their uses but I don't like them. The snow in the woods is deep and soft. Again, you can get one in but not with any kind of load. Anyone who tried had to dig themselves out at least once. It is much easier coming in from the west, but it is a long, long ride down the railway (now abandon) and across the big lake.
  • Aerial tramline. Yes, we even considered it. Cost and tower placement were a bit of a problem.

Satisfied? Now let's get to work.

Stage 1. The parking area.

This is the main moving machine - a wheelbarrow. I have put a flat deck on it fitted with brackets to take both 2x4 and 2x6. I even have a rig for carrying 4 sheets of 3/8 plywood tented over the wheelbarrow.

Stage1. The parking area.

A local lumber dealer will deliver the lumber for a reasonable fee to the parking area where the trailhead begins. The first task is to get it away from the road so it doesn't "head south" as we say.

Stage 1 to stage 2. The dip.

This is where you find out if you overloaded yourself. This is where I found out that any conveyance with more than one wheel is very difficult to manoever over the roots and uneven trail.

Stage 2

This is about 100m along the trail and out of site of the road. We move everything here from stage 1 and tarp it up if it is going to be left for any length of time. Things have had to sit here for up to four months.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Cord Hamilton loads up the wheelbarrow ready to head out on the trail along Entrance Ridge. Cord is a stout lad and can carry a whopping load. Carrying plywood across this hill one windy day, he was knocked flat by a south wind. Moving plywood in the wind requires carrying on the downwind side and "grounding" the corner when a gust comes up. Otherwise you can find yourself hang gliding into the ravine.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Entrance Ridge trail. You can see the trail following the ridge down to the middle left of the picture.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Here we are with a bit of a load going in in 2002.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Looking back along the Entrance Ridge trail. We hand dug this out of the hillside in 1983 and shored it up with logs.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Near the top of the Switch Back looking up Entrance Ridge. This can be a daunting sight when you are going back with the wheelbarrow for your third or fourth load of the day.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Bottom of the Switch Back facing the big push uphill.

Stage 2 to stage 3

The Switch Back from the top.

Stage 2 to stage 3

Here we are trying to get a load down the Switch Back. This is the point where your load sometimes gets away and crashes into the trees. I have also broken two wheelbarrows at this point. This is also where snow machines tend to get stuck.

Stage 2 to stage 3

This is the last section downhill through the woods to stage 3. You can relax a bit at this point.

Stage 3

Stage 3 is just a clearing in the woods where we stockpile stuff before taking it across the lake. Most of the plywood for the roofing and siding got cached here over the winter of 2000-2001. The boardwalk leads down to the Canoe Landing and the trail around the lake heads off to the left. The lake trail winds through the forest and around the base of a hill that projects into a marsh. Getting a wheelbarrow through there is hell, so we tend to use the lake.

Stage 4 Canoe Landing

Helene stands on the small floating dock where we load materials. I did a really poor job designing it so it is really tippy. To the right is the large floating dock we use for moving big materials across the lake. We tow it with the canoe. The lake is our drinking water, so don't ask the question about the outboard motor.

Stage 5 Cabin Landing

The large dock is normally moored here. This shot is looking back across the lake. The Canoe Landing is at the far end on the right.

Stage 5 Cabin Landing

The old Coleman Canoe, the half ton truck of our operation. We have moved plywood, a generator and tons of lumber in this old tiger.

Cabin Hill

Just when you thought you had it made, there is this last little hill between the lake and the cabin. From the cabin, it is another 100 m to the dojo, but that is over level ground on a good trail.

The Lake

This is Goldeneye Lake in the winter. The winter trail runs from left to right at the far end.

What is this?

To move plywood across the lake in the Spring of 2001, I lashed two tobaggans together and built a frame on top. The raised frame kept the plywood from cutting into the snow at the side of the trail. For about three hours per day, before it got too warm, the surface of the lake was almost frictionless and I could move six sheets of 3/8 plywood at a time across the lake.