Choosing the Lot
We had visited the area with one of the Band representatives and chose our lot. All the lots were 100 feet along the road and over 100 feet down to the lake. Of the 50 original lots there were only a few remaining.
It was difficult to see all the features of the property due to the trees and bush but we choose the lot that we liked the best in part because it appeared to be higher than all of the surrounding lots.
This turned out to be a good move as in the years to come some neighbors experienced flooding and loss of their beaches due to erosion from storms.
Siting the House
The lots had been surveyed and our first job was to decide where to put our home. Some people had built near the centre of their lot while others built to one side or the other. We chose to build to the side leaving ample room for expansion.
The conditions of the lease allowed for a setback of four feet from the property lines on either side, and you had to build more or less in line with your neighbors houses. The setback from the road was required for the installation of a septic bed that would be about 50 feet by 50 feet plus the septic tank. This however would be some time in coming.
First the Clearing
On evenings and weekends we would load the kids into the van and head out to the site of our home to be. The kids would play in an area away from the brush clearing and they had a ball in their woodland playground.
The work wasn’t too difficult as we were removing mostly brush and small trees with an axe and buck saw. The wood we cut was piled and fed to a small fire over which we cooked hotdogs, marshmallows and s’mores. It was just like camping and with all the exercise and fresh air everyone slept well.
Throughout the fall, friends from college would come out to help on weekends. We cleared a lot of the small brush and enjoyed a few bonfires.
With the site cleaned up, we had to decide which of the trees we needed to remove. We wanted to keep as many as possible but had to remove the ones growing where the driveway and septic system were to go.
Next – Deforestation Part 2