Life at the end of the road

June 15, 2008

Frogs, newts, and porpoises

Filed under: daily doings, hydro, Land Rover — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:25 pm

Dunno what happened this morning but I didn’t wake until my clock said 9:00am! this is actually 8:30am in real time. You see I have this clock, it’s one of those with the numbers on little flaps that flip round and you can only advance it to set the time so to go back 30mins you have to go forward 23hours and 30mins! It’s a pretty rubbish clock and is so noisy that we keep it at the other end of the bedroom or in a drawer but as it’s the only alarm clock we have and it’s now so tacky that it’s back in fashion I hang on to it like a comfy pair of slippers as I’ve had it for around 30 years. Anyway after my unscheduled and uncharacteristic lie in I set about the feeding which was a little easier now that 6 little piggies are away. Bramble our escape artist Tamworth had managed to lift a 12′ gate off it’s hinges as a protest for her late breakfast, luckily it was from previous experience tied at both ends so she couldn’t get out anyway but she was having a really good try.

The water shortage starts to bite

I keep saying we’ve had hardly any rain for 2 months but I’ve now been saying it for so long that it must be more than that. Our chalet ran out 3 weeks ago, our caravan and garden supply 2 weeks ago and the house dried up a week ago today. I’ve not been overly worried as I made up a 600lt bowser that’s been keeping our washing machine and toilet going and there’s a wee drip been going into the house tanks enough for a bath every couple of days but today even that stopped! With this in mind I took a run up to North Arnish to check the water supply there, as far as I’m aware this has never dried up in living memory and I had in mind to improve it to feed the chalet.

I needn’t have bothered as even the frogs and newts were starting to panic, as you can see there’s only a couple of inches in the tank and the well that feeds it has all but dried up! We have had rain but just the odd shower and most of that evaporates in the sun. I’m not complaining as it’s been so dry I’ve only cut the lawn twice this year and I can always get water in my bowser and pump it into the storage tanks. It’s a little bit of a hassle but is much better than the rain and midge that we’re usually plagued with at this time of year.

Being a bit obsessed with water, or should I say the lack of it I took a wander up to the wee lochan above Torran, more with a view to a reliable supply for the small hydro turbine that I fitted at Torran than to a drinking water supply. I started fitting this mini hydro scheme last December and had it up and running before Easter when it performed magnificently until the burn dried up. The lochan that feeds this is another 120m higher and 600m further away, It’s not impossible to use it but it will be a bit of a challenge getting the extra 600m of pipe up there.

Came across this on the way up there, a stags head with a lopsided set of antlers.

Porpoises galore

After all that it was time to take the Dudes pal home, well over to Sconser on the ferry at least and on the way back I was treated to a spectacular display by some porpoises chasing the ‘Loch Striven’

It was of course far more spectacular than I could capture with my wee camera

But you get the picture.

After all the excitement I headed home to a nice bit of pot roasted pork for dinner then finished off wiring up my ‘ARB air locker’

Now I know that to the vast majority of readers this will be of no interest whatsoever but fitting those 2 switches is the final piece in a 2 and a half year jigsaw which has involved a trip to Eymouth, innumerable hours labour, allot of cash and even more effort. The one on the left operates the compressor and the one on the right the ‘ARB air locker’ on the rear diff. This effectively doubles the traction on the rear axle by locking the differential gears pneumatically.

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