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Really Nice Gene ! I'm kind of lamed-up , with surgery on my shooting shoulder last Tues. !
I really like your house's design , there's a lot of nice views , with so much glass and a cup of coffee !
When you retire...hehee
 

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OK, all the interior 5/8" OSB, except for the top plate spacers, has been cut to size and screwed into place. This summer, when it's time to insulate and run wires, I can simply unscrew those pieces, do what I need to do in the walls, and then screw them back in place. All that will have to wait until I get back from working out west. I'll find out for sure tomorrow, but it sounds like the sliding door and sets of windows won't be delivered until the first part of February. One small step at a time.

Good thing I'm a patient man. :ROFLMAO:

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I'm writing a book...mainly for my wife, and kids and their families, revolving around my duck hunting. I'd like them to see some of the things I've seen, and maybe understand a bit better why I do what I do. This latest story, short as it may be, is about sculling, so I thought you might enjoy it.
****

Sculling

I’m not entirely sure what year it was when I went on my first scull boat hunt, but I do know I was hooked on it from that day forward. Although I can not remember the date, or even the year for that matter, I am of absolute certainty that it was John Hayden who piloted the boat, and the body of water was Lake Shastina. While coaxing ducks from the sky into a carefully set spread of decoys was, and still is, something I dearly loved to do, this was different. Sculling was a spot and stalk style of hunting, more closely associated with big game hunting than anything, and the challenge of glassing a bird, or birds, then sneaking across the top of the open water in order to get close enough to shoot them, was a thing that touched me deeply. Once engaged in sculling I knew I would never willingly stop.

There is nothing fast about sculling: it is slow, methodical, and meticulous. When you succeed, you did it right. When you fail, you did it wrong. Yes, there are circumstances that cause success, or failure, which you can’t control, but by and large the outcome of the chase is determined by the skill of the operator. On the water, you are alone. There is nobody there with which to discuss plans, or strategize. There is nobody there to help you make decisions. And, right or wrong, there is nobody there to take credit for, or to accept blame for those choices, except you. No matter what, you own everything that happens. I firmly believe that those who were born to scull not only accept that as their reality…they relish in it, and would have it no other way. Perhaps that’s why I love it so much.
Another aspect of the game I embrace is the solitude. Once you settle into the cockpit, and move away from the shore, you are alone. If you want to carry on a conversation you must have the ability to talk to yourself. Obviously with two hunters in the boat all that changes, but the overwhelming majority of my time spent under the oar has been alone. I have indeed conversed with my alter egos…yes, out loud…but normally all words are spoken only in my mind. You see sculling is very much a thinking man’s game. There are never ending possibilities, all of which must be considered before starting the sneak. Experience, calculation, physical conditioning, and weather observations are all “advisors” to be consulted with, and those talks are most often held in silence.

Sculling starts long before the boat ever hits the water. Seaworthiness is the top priority and is always addressed first. Next on the list is camouflage. Making the boat hide on the water means trying to paint it so it blends in with that particular water. Normally some shade of gray is the preferred color, but sometimes a green or brownish is in order. Most go with gray as it works in the majority of situations. I get a bit more elaborate with my paint scheme, but would probably do just fine with a solid color. I also coat my final paint job with semi-gloss clear as water is shiny, not flat. Aside from the single sculling oar, which propels the boat, I come equipped with a kayak paddle, a large sponge, binoculars, something with which to bail water, and a flotation device. I use closed cell foam pads to lay on, and my bow weights, which keep the nose of the boat down to the water line, are two pieces of railroad iron weighing in at 60 lbs apiece. Other than that all you really need is a gray rain jacket for “just in case”, your gun, and your shells. Simple…I like simple.

Sculling isn’t a easy task. It’s an art form to get the boat from point A to point B with a single oar that slides in through the transom. Your task is to the move the boat forward, usually two to four hundred yards, across open water, and get to within thirty yards or less of creatures who survive by being aware of their surroundings, and who flee at the first sign of danger. Keep in mind that these creatures are not obligated to stay in any one place while you’re trying to get close. They are often moving, which means you are constantly changing course and always trying to keep the bow pointed directly at the birds. Sometimes you move the boat forward, sometimes you stop and wait, and occasionally you turn the boat sideways in order to “herd” the birds in a certain direction. There is never a “one size fits all” approach.

I was born a sculler. I’m convinced it has always been inside me, I simply needed to be placed on the right path in order to find the end of the trail.

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Thanks to the help of a couple friends this morning, the two banks of lower windows are now in place in the front of the porch enclosure. Next step is the contractor will set the big door frame and make sure it's level, then the glass guys come back and install the outside fixed glass panels. At that point it's audios wind. Glass guys measured the openings for the upper windows, but it'll be 12-16 weeks before they come in. One step at a time.



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Nice , Really Nice ! I know about Big Fixed Glass panels . Did a job few years back that required (2) panels ,
that went from floor to roof on each side of the fireplace , a total of 18'10" tall X 86" wide . it was a heart stopper
watching the Glazers fit it in ! Being 7/8" thick made them heavy as heck .
I don't remember that place having the view , you have though !
 

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I liked the essay on sculling, Gene. When your book hits Amazon I'll buy it!

I doubt the book will ever see the light of day past my family, but if you're interested in reading the stories they are all posted in the story tellers sticky on the main page of the refuge forums.
 

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Yesterday morning we got the big double sliding door frame installed, and now we wait for the glass guys to get back over the hill to put in the side panels. That will be the last piece of the puzzle for this winter to get the front porch project closed in. Upper windows are ordered, but it'll be 12+ weeks before those show up. Once it warms up, the next part of this will be to get the floor leveled off as much as we can. There's a lot of slope in the concrete, so we need to bring it up 2 1/4" in the front and then take it back as far as we can to get it as level as we can. It's either that or build furniture that is taller on one side than the other. 😄

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Why so much slope on the cement Gene? Did your contractor poor it or did you? lol. Thats a lot to be off from level with pouring cement and it does make it a whole lot harder for you at this point of your build, as you already know, lol.
 

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On a side note, for the last couple weeks, Ive been having hundreds of geese flying over my house and into some of the winter wheat fields to the east of my place. Im between the river and a lot of corn and wheat fields. Well yesterday around 3, my wife was in the kitchen and Im sitting in the living room in my recliner and Ive been watching geese move all day long to the east. I figured they were all done coming off the river due to how many I had been seeing. All of a sudden my wife hollars, look look out the window. Shes looking to the west and she says to look out the window to the east. As I look out, OMG, there were several thousand geese all at once heading east. It seemed like it went on for over a minute or two and maybe it really did, but, man, I have never seen so many geese all at one time moving and my wife even agreed that there were several thousand geese at one time. I would guess that with what I saw moving all day, there were easy 5-6 thousand geese come off the river starting around 8:30 until we saw this huge bunch. Ive lived in the same place now for 33 years and I know Ive never ever seen this many geese. Now no ducks at all which I normally see, so I guess they all switched places. What have all of you been seeing?
 

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Why so much slope on the cement Gene? Did your contractor poor it or did you? lol. Thats a lot to be off from level with pouring cement and it does make it a whole lot harder for you at this point of your build, as you already know, lol.
I have no idea, but it doesn't really matter at this point, I just have to deal with it. Talked with the glass guys today and those upper custom windows should be here the end of March, so much sooner than we'd thought. Fact is they'll beat me back from California. Guess that means the focal point when I return will be to install the upper windows and finish the siding and trim. After that is may be warm enough to start leveling the concrete. Regardless, I'm going to spend a LOT more time fishing this summer than working.

As for geese, nothing ever flies over my house, so I have no idea if there's birds around or not.
 
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