For mapgeeks like me, satellite images provide hours of great fun

It's true that I can entertain myself for hours poring over maps and satellite photos...especially if the maps and photos in question have something to do with finding trails, or figuring out where the heck we can put stuff on the new place.

(as always, click the photos to enlarge them)

So this evening Jim and I were able to settle down with our friendly neighborhood mapping software (SCOPI is a fabulous resource for land images in Snohomish County!) and my photo-editing software, and make some plans!

The first priority was to find the perfect place for the barn. After walking the property several times, we've got the spot picked out (shown on photo): at the northeast corner of the pasture, with the south-facing roof able to house solar panels.

The stalls will face south, and the hayroom will face east towards the driveway, so that we won't have to do any fancy manuvers to unload hay or to park the truck and trailer. We will have to build in some rolling grade dips in the new section of driveway to avoid having all the rain running down into our neatly-stacked hay!

We'll put up field fencing for the perimeter, in the big square, and cross-fence with smaller (and cheaper) fiberglass fenceposts and electric fencing tape to make smaller or larger pastures.

Then we have to decide which structures need to be torn down and/or moved.

I love the fire pit, but it's in the wrong place. Move it up to the bottom of the (new) garden and it's much better. Of course, that's probably a day or two of digging and brick moving, but what the heck. So far the only thing I'm moving around in real space is the keys on the computer keyboard, so the heavy labor isn't too difficult. Yet.

The greenhouse is in the SHADE, (the trees you can see in the photos are at the south and west) which is fairly pointless for actually, you know, growing green stuff. We'll either move the building to a better location, tear it down, or turn it into an always-useful bicycle garage .

Then there's the old outhouse. It's very quaint; with a caved-in roof and falling-in walls, though, it's not exactly a salvagable structure. But there must be something I can do with that adorable outhouse door with the crescent moon....ideas?


  1. WOW cool pic - I love the plans. I did mine on paper cuz the satellite images of our area suck. *whine*

    After all your example photos of the geotiles, aren't you going to use them at your new place? I know why we cannot - they are vastly more expensive then geotextile. We could pick geotextile for 500 euros, or geotiles for 5000. (!!)

    I have great plans for our greenhouse - it's in dire need of a good vinegar/water cleaning (the glass is green!) but then it should be really nice. Dreaming of herbs and veggies...

    Yesterday Joerg talked to the landowner whose field touches ours - actually, it's just one big huge field that we own half of. She would like to rent or sell us the other half. We'll have to rent until we can buy, but we were suprised to hear that her parcel is bigger than we thought. In total we'd have just over 5 acres, which means we have to consider growing our own hay. Before we bought it, it was just a hay field that someone paid to mow every year. I wonder if you are considering this too? You definitely have enough land, and it's tractor accessible.

    The only problem with all this bonus land we just found out about, that is just so much more barbed wire to get rid of, and electic wire to put up on the questionable looking posts. Yes, many posts to buy. SO glad we didn't end up with something crazy like 20 acres!: )

    Are you happy with that amount of land too? I mean, it looks perfect for you guys, and I know you're not about to start your own backyard breeding practice. That's just not cool anymore.: )

    I LOVE that it happened for us at the same time. We will both be doing the same property improvements together - this is so awesome.

    Google "Paddock Paradise" if you haven't already - it's a really neat concept for horsekeeping that causes domestic horses to mimic the lifestyles of wild horses. I love this idea and hope to implement it.


  2. The Paddock Paradise is an interesting concept, and I definitely want to take a closer look.

    We plan to create a "sacrifice area" near the barn--a big all-weather turnout that is essentially a 20 x 40 paddock filled with hogsfuel to keep the mud down. The Horses for Clean Water people recommend making a big sacrifice area so the horses have a high-and-dry place to hang out during the mud season. With Hana's tendency to get scratches and thrush, it's pretty vital.

    And, coincidentally, a 20' x 40' hogsfuel area can also be used in the dry season as an arena! -g-

    Google Horses for Clean Water to see their site. Their publications are uber-cheap and very, very useful!

    We only have a little bit of barbed wire, hoorah. You'll be meticulous about picking up all of yours, of course--and it's recycle-able, of course! Most of the "junk" on our property is people-stuff, so the sellers will need to cope with that before we move in.

    Yes, very delighted that we're doing this together...albeit long-distance!

  3. I've spent a good deal of time reading the Horses for Clean Water materials. In fact, that is one of my bookmarked links because they have so many good articles about mud management. They have a few articles about geotextile and gravel that I've saved. They taught me the importance of gutters on a horse shelter, and buffer zones. I have no idea if such organizations even exist here in Germany to help property owners manage their lands (e.g. the "open farms" they host). Oh well, I'll keep reading...

    Good that the owners are gonna help get their stuff out. "Coping" with junk should be their job.

    You mentioned you've never built a birdhouse, and I haven't either, but for some reason I'm overcome with the urge to try to build one now. Perhaps cuz I have an actual tree to hang it from? hehehehe Sometimes Geocaching I see these little birdhouses that the city (?) puts out in the woods to help the birds. I thought, "I could build that" (uh, maybe). And now I'm toying with the idea. Last spring the neighbors had bird babies on their balcony, cheeping like crazy whenever a parent bird arrived with food, and I want that joyful cheeping around next spring.

    ~lytha, snowed in and dreaming of out there


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