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Follow along with our total land use/obstacle course project

 
pollinator
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In an effort to use more of our property we are installing a path and various structures. Follow the adventure here.
 
elle sagenev
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A few pics of what's happening right now.
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elle sagenev
pollinator
Posts: 2455
Location: Zone 5 Wyoming
388
kids duck forest garden chicken pig bee greening the desert homestead
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Some more telephone pole pics. I'm going to do a map and some drawings of the plan in a bit.

Husband imagines quite a few obstacles from Full Metal Jacket. Those that the kids aren't able to do will be put off the path.
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walking the path toward the birdge and corner tower
walking the path toward the birdge and corner tower
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dead center of property, going to be a club house tower thing
dead center of property, going to be a club house tower thing
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This is going to be a teepee climber
This is going to be a teepee climber
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Husband enjoying the dead center tower
Husband enjoying the dead center tower
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Some of our poles have seen lightening
Some of our poles have seen lightening
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this is the bridge. 50 feet from pole to pole and I tried to get it as much over the path as possible for the fun aspect
this is the bridge. 50 feet from pole to pole and I tried to get it as much over the path as possible for the fun aspect
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Husband measuring the distance here for the climber
Husband measuring the distance here for the climber
 
elle sagenev
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We have 30 tester trees coming to see if they can survive without watering. No way we can water trees this far from any water source. Have American Plum, choke cherry and eastern red cedar coming. Box Elder was considered but it said it was a major allergen and we already have severely allergic peeps on our property so not doing that.
 
elle sagenev
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We decided to plant some allegedly drought hard saplings all along our path and around our obstacles. We planted 25 American plum, one eastern red cedar and 5 chokecherry.

I was digging the holes and the kids were planting the trees. Very successful system. We used daughters little electric car to drive the trees and tools around the path. It was a nice night of planting.
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Had no idea what was going on but was utterly fascinated.
Had no idea what was going on but was utterly fascinated.
 
elle sagenev
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Some of the various trees we planted around the course are doing really well!
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elle sagenev
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Daughter hurt her leg on our walk. Good thing the path is large and my car is small. Hubs came to pick us up.
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elle sagenev
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I convinced my hubs to let me put up a zipline. Waiting for the wire in the mail and then we'll install it between 2 poles that I had intended to put a bridge across. It's going to be a fairly low and short zipline. Hubs is very concerned about safety. I bought the thickest wire our zipline caribiner could handle (1/4") and we'll see how it goes!
 
pollinator
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hugelkultur forest garden hunting chicken food preservation bee
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I built a zip line- you really don’t need monster cable. I used 10,000# soft steel cable and what are called “dead ends” from an arborists supply place. That and what is called a haven grip to tension the cable and one lag bolt on each side- and then some testing. The haven grip can be used for tensioning and de-tensioning to make it safe-ish. Total cost was about $100 if you already have a haven grip and comeAlong.

Unfortunately I think I am the only one who uses it with adult friends who miss being kids. Same with the tree house which is basically a hunting stand.

The haven grip is handy to make trellises for kiwi and other monster vines. I get free cable and hardware since the utility is burying lines. And poles!

I was going to make a course along the lines of one used in the military that is infamous. I suspect your husband may know which I am referring to... when I was a kid we would have killed to have something like that. Your kids will love it since they are out pretty far. They will soon find out a broken wrist isn’t the end of the world. It’s a good lesson!
 
Tj Jefferson
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Our zip line is on the crazy side at 240’ but I made it on a slope specifically at an angle that matches well- no more than 4’ drop for an adult. For half of it you have to hold up your knees as an adult. Little kids only go halfway with a line block installed as a brake (just two 2x4 with tire slabs and u-bolts to tighten lightly on the wire).

The secret is getting the right tension and that’s why it’s nice to have the haven grip it makes it a fast job. I think I changed the tension four times in an hour.
 
elle sagenev
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Tj Jefferson wrote:I built a zip line- you really don’t need monster cable. I used 10,000# soft steel cable and what are called “dead ends” from an arborists supply place. That and what is called a haven grip to tension the cable and one lag bolt on each side- and then some testing. The haven grip can be used for tensioning and de-tensioning to make it safe-ish. Total cost was about $100 if you already have a haven grip and comeAlong.

Unfortunately I think I am the only one who uses it with adult friends who miss being kids. Same with the tree house which is basically a hunting stand.

The haven grip is handy to make trellises for kiwi and other monster vines. I get free cable and hardware since the utility is burying lines. And poles!

I was going to make a course along the lines of one used in the military that is infamous. I suspect your husband may know which I am referring to... when I was a kid we would have killed to have something like that. Your kids will love it since they are out pretty far. They will soon find out a broken wrist isn’t the end of the world. It’s a good lesson!



It likely would have been fine with thinner cable but it makes my hubs feel way safer to have a thicker cable and I don't care so logn as I get a zip line. lol

I will definitely look into a haven grip for adjusting tension. Ours is going to be about 50'. If it goes well we will add a much much longer one to the other side of the property.

Our zip line is probably close to $100 ish dollars. I bought a really big roll of wire because I want to use it on other obstacles so that was about $100 itself but the amount I'm using on the zip line is small.
 
elle sagenev
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I put swings up for the kids yesterday. I learned many valuable things for future obstacle coursing. 1, our drill is not strong enough to drill through a telephone pole. MUST BUY STRONGER DRILL. recommendations welcome. Currently have a Dewalt.

2, we had decided the first level of our clubhouse would be 4 feet and the second would be 10. So I put the swings at 10 feet as they'll act as one of the floor joists later. Looking at it up there I think we need to rethink our floor levels. 10 feet is about half our pole I'd say.

4x6x12 is HEAVY wood and putting that brace up there by myself was probably not the smartest thing ever.

Kids love it though.
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elle sagenev
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So, the zipline is up. It needs tightened more. It seemed really tight initially but as the kids use it more it gets looser. I'm not sure what's up with that. It's high enough that the tractor can go under it to maintain the path but low and slow enough that the kids can be out there unsupervised playing on it, which is good, because they do, a lot. They love it.

Husband moved a nice log out there for me to sit on while I watch them and it's been enjoyable, having this path.
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elle sagenev
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Ladder climber mostly up. We can probably go 5 boards higher but we aren't sure if we want the kids to go that high. Right now the top board is 13.5' high. It feels really high when you're up there.

I received a new drill for my birthday and it cuts through the telephone poles like buttah. Really makes a difference.  

I bought 6' threaded rods and cut them to size. Buying them smaller is WAY WAY more expensive than buying a long one and cutting it.
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elle sagenev
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Husband caught me out putting the boards up without sealing them and made me stop. So I did 3, waited and then did 3 more.

The boards are roughly 2' apart. I say roughly because where the hole went the board went and I'm not that precise.
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So high!
So high!
 
elle sagenev
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Stay tuned as the rope swing is next. We have the board ready to go, needing to buy ropes. Husband also suggested doing a pirate ship type swing arm on the end and I'm not sure how to get that done yet. Any ideas welcome.
 
elle sagenev
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ok. Rough drawing of what I mean by the rope swing thing. I'm not sure what to call it and am having issues finding answers on google because of it. So basically there would be a swing on the outside that would have another board somehow attached to it that would swivel. Any ideas how I should attach it??? Red line where it would be attached.
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elle sagenev
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A lot of our trees died around the track. Even with the tree collars. I was happy to see that many of them may make another push though.
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elle sagenev
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Rope is up. Have to buy 2 more ropes
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