How do I know when summer is over?

When we move the dock inland to over-winter.

Commencing fall storage

Commencing fall storage

That should be amended to read when John moves the dock onto dry land!

The first year we moved here we left the original dock out through 4 seasons. The water and ice levels varied and the ice warped and crushed the dock in one winter season.

The flower pots and extra concrete blocks you see anchor the dock in case the water level rises ~ which it has. A tropical storm here and there actually lifted the dock high enough on those poles to cause it to almost drift away!

The following pictures were taken when Post tropical storm Hannah hit us in 2008; notice how high the water is – the dock is submerged!hanna-tipped-dock
hanna020
The water rose high enough the dock started to drift away and this picture from September 2008 shows John and Kristen heading out to retrieve it.
hanna-dock-2

It is a lot of work to move that in and out but it is so nice to sit out there and soak in the peacefulness of the lake. I do my best to keep any guilt under control since I am utterly useless for this particular task. I slip, stumble and whine with the best of them when trying to help so I’d rather avoid the whole thing altogether. Last year John used the lawn tractor and his own muscle to move everything ~ but this year an unsuspecting target guest showed up unexpectedly.

Old habits die hard - marching together

Old habits die hard – marching together

Meet Alistair, John’s older brother. If he looks familiar it is because you also saw him helping to move Kristen’s stuff to University a few posts back. Alistair likes to keep busy and fortunately has helped us frequently over the last 2 months along with his wife (they have that beautiful yellow home I showed you in that same university post).

Brotherly advice?

Brotherly advice?

Although the main dock is rigged with wheels for easier movement it is still hard to manoeuvre in and out of the water. The pathway is narrow and the dock doesn’t roll in a nice, straight path. The poles keeping it in place on their pads both in the water and on land have to be shortened for travel. If those poles and pads weren’t used the poles in the water would sink into the muddy bottom, tipping the dock right into the water.

Alistair suits up for wet, muddy work

Alistair suits up for wet, muddy work

Discussing the best way to move the pieces onto land

Discussing the best way to move the pieces onto land

The raft used to sit out on the lake for us to use. As the kids grew up they used it less so, for the last 2 years, John rigged it up to attach to the dock itself. It gets more use in its current location and we will all forever remember the night of the fireworks and John’s younger brother Harry out there dipping and teetering that thing like crazy.

The first task was to move the raft around into our cove. John accomplished this by throwing the anchors close to shore then pulling on the chain. Once in shallow water he and Alistair pulled it up onto the lawn. Over the fall and winter we will get a few storms that will raise the lake level and we will float the raft higher up on the lawn when that happens. When the lake level recedes (which it always does) the raft is high and dry. The concrete blocks/anchors always keep it on our property.

All the pieces moving in to land

All the pieces moving in to land

The wooden footpath and the middle piece of the dock system were carried in and stacked on the lower lawn. Once those pieces are moved then the main dock is rolled up to higher ground.

Putting muscle into it!

Putting muscle into it!

I wonder… will we even put anything out next summer at all?

Lonely dock

Lonely dock

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