Lava rock & coconut palms
|Mahalo Hursley Alani|
Hursley Alani from Alani Bulldozing LLC did a magnificent job of cutting in and leveling our driveway and a space to start building our home aka a house pad.
The area of Hawaii that we have bought our land on is solid black lava rock with a thin layer of topsoil. In addition the terrain is pretty uneven with a rolling topography, so it was not an easy job trying to tame it by any means. The good aspect of excavating a driveway into this rock is that once the rock is crushed and dozed it is almost like having an asphalt driveway and we could drive onto it immediately. However, we have opted to add a layer of gravel on top to fill in the gaps and smooth it all out even more.
|18 tons of gravel|
|The house pad|
|Gravel laid onto driveway|
|Smoothing out the gravel|
The same day we called we had our first dump truck deliver 18 tons of gravel which covered our long driveway very nicely with an initial layer. It was incredible to watch how the bed of the truck was tipped to release small amounts of gravel as the driver slowly drove the length of the driveway. I must add that it was a little nerve wracking too as Dreadknot was walking behind, guiding the driver as he released the gravel... I was concerned that something might go wrong and that Dreadknot could be buried by 18 tons of small rocks and stones.
It rained almost solidly for the entire three days we were there and despite the torrential downpours with thunder and lightning, no muddy puddles developed and our car could easily navigate the terrain. Sleeping outdoors in a tent in the midst of a heavy storm with sheet lightning being displayed every so often accompanied by loud cracks of thunder is quite an exhilarating experience! At first I mistook the lightening for flashlights in the middle of the night which was a much scarier prospect than that of Mother Nature.
|First camp on our property|
|Shelter from the rain|
Camping on our property while we worked on it was also exciting as this would be the first time that we were sleeping on our land and fortunately we had good rain gear in the form of tarps( used over and under the tent), umbrellas and rain suits and great camping equipment.
Once we measured the housepad with a 100ft tape measure we realized that we had measured short the first time as we had to go over and around foliage, mounds and trees. The pad was actually 60 ft by 90 ft instead of 80 ft by 80 ft... but even that initial size we had wanted would not be big enough for our plans. We had Kimo from a container company come and inspect the area to see if it was appropriate for a 40 ft shipping container and realized then that the width of the clearing would not work for this plan. Next we got Hursley to come back and we are hiring him again to widen the pad. This was a little disappointing as it costs an additional fee to have the large bulldozer delivered each time.... but there was nothing we could do, the space just wasn’t wide enough.
|Two Feathers at work with the rake|
Another one of our plans is to plant fruit trees every time we go to work on our property. Hursley very kindly gave us five coconut palms which we have planted in an area we are calling “ Coconut Grove”. We also bought a small fig tree sapling and lemon tree sapling which we transplanted into bigger pots and planted the seeds of a delicious papaya and avocado we ate and we’re going to see what happens with those!
|Dreadknot planting the coconut palms|
|Two Feathers in the "Coconut Grove"|
It’s now two weeks later and the bulldozer is back on the property making it bigger!
|The D9 Bulldozer moving rock|
We have secured a heavy duty chain with a lock across the driveway to prevent vehicular trespassing and hope to get a gate up soon. Next step is going to be purchasing and delivery of a shipping container that we can use as a secure lock up garage and storage shed....
Stay tuned for the next installment of this amazing adventure!