Other 4:00:00 
On the theory that anything this tiring is training for something: The monster rain this week has caused havoc with bridge building activities. The trail is too wet to drive equipment on, and I've lost all the seed I planted, along with most of the topsoil, despite spreading about 30 bales of mulch hay. I got stuck with just one curb rail to put on the bridge, along with needing to backfill at the ends. I had been hauling my generator down in my mountain golf cart in order to power the drill for the 1/2" holes through 15" of white oak to install the bolts for the rail on the S side, but just had the N side rail lying there. Zack asked why I didn't just use a cordless drill, and I dismissed that by saying it wouldn't work, but it was bugging me, so I hauled the drill and various other supplies down in a wheelbarrow to try it out. Because the drill binds so much, I had developed a 4-pass approach to drilling a hole. First I put the curb on top of the spacer, which is loosely tacked to the decking with 16 penny nails. After marking my spots, I drill a 3/8" hole with a 7" long auger bit, because the 3/8" bit can be reversed and pulled back out to clear the debris, but the 1/2" bit is too aggressive and jams. Then I go back and drill in the same hole with a 7" long 1/2" bit, which still involves a lot of back and forth to get the debris out of the hole. Then I flip the rail off and there are pilot holes in the spacers. The pilot holes are deep enough that I am able to work the 1/2" bit to drill through the spacer (3") and most of the decking (6"). Finally I make a pass with an 18" long 1/2" bit to get through the bottom, put back the rail and I'm ready for the bolts. They are pretty challenging to get in. When Chris was helping me the other day, he was able to pound them in with a 3 lb hand hammer. I could only get through the top board like that, so I got the bolts started and then used an 8 lb sledge. Still pretty hard. Then the nuts and washers. Turns out the 18 v cordless drill works fine, except it took 4 battery charges to complete the drilling. Hence a lot of up and down to charge batteries (3 trips total, since one time I charged both batteries). Since it was raining and I never knew if it would start to pour, the wheelbarrow, bolts, hammers, etc. made each trip. In the course of this I observed a problem with the road on the far side of the bridge. This summer when I was starting to work on it, I made a hole in the beaver dam upstream of the bridge, and a trench from that hole around to the east of the bridge to dry things out. When Michael was building the road with the excavator, we never filled in the trench - just covered over the end of it. Now that it is raining so hard, the trench is getting a big runoff which is trying to eat through the road, and the water has to jump the trench to go under the bridge. Duh! Since I can't get the backhoe down there right now, hand measures have to be taken pronto. This involved schlepping the chainsaw down (on one of my wheelbarrow trips) and cutting up the trees that had been felled and dumped across the trench, then using a pick mattock to dig holes in the downstream side of the trench to give the water an escape route. Meanwhile, the high water has brought the beavers back into the equation. No telling what mischief they may have in store for me, including the possibility that they may want to use the roadway as the foundation for an extension of their dam. Stern measures need to be taken! Once I can get the backhoe down there I will need to fill in the trench, and I will also need to riprap the entire south side of the road. Finally, Tony showed up just as I was dragging up to the top of the hill with my wheelbarrow after lots of bridge work, chainsawing, channel digging, etc. So I had to take him down there to show him what was going on. Interesting how cold it was walking up hill without a wheelbarrow.