Trailer Woes

We’ve always been a family that tends to buy garage-related things new, but will often wait for a sale, discount, or inventory clearance to get nice things at modest prices. Gone are days of dropping by Home Depot and sifting through their clearance inventory, or hitting up slickdeals.net for stellar deal on a set of wrenches (it’s almost never a stellar deal after shipping to Alaska). Since we live in reality where money doesn’t grow on trees, that means we’re buying more items used. Our two most recent purchases just also happen to be purchases you really don’t want to be lemons: expensive items.

First, we purchased The Beast. We haven’t taken it out for a spin yet, but all signs point to a good purchase there. Next, I needed a means of moving that sucker around. We’re also in the middle of our real estate hunt, looking for a piece of land on which to build our next home, and plan on doing as much of the work ourselves as we are able. If I learned anything from renovating our last home, it’s that a 6.5′ pickup truck bed is nice, but a 16′ trailer is better. 12′ sheets of drywall, a pallet of tile or wood flooring, lumber, PVC, etc are all easier to transport with more space.

I set out to find myself a tandem axle flatbed trailer, at least 14′ long. We could use it to haul The Beast today, to haul construction materials tomorrow, and to haul whatever our hearts desire in the future. After a week or so of hunting, I found a few options on Craiglist and settled on a 16′ flatbed with 18″ side walls at an affordable price. The seller seemed to know the ins/outs of the trailer and had recently brought it up from North Carolina so it was road worthy. Unfortunately, it was in Soldotna (about 90 minutes away).

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Bringing Home “The Beast”

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If there’s one thing almost every Alaskan has, it’s an off road vehicle of some sort. It could be a boat, bush plane, ATV/UTV,  Argo, or snow machine (snowmobile for you Lower 48’ers). Our plans here in Homer include building a house, putting up a high tunnel, and owning a few small animals. We’ll need something to haul produce up from the garden, run up the road to get the mail, take hunting, use collecting firewood, etc. Read more Bringing Home “The Beast”

Life at the End of the Road: Local Radio

Radio in Homer, AK is very different than radio in Minneapolis, MN. While Minnesota’s options definitely included smaller stations, the stations that came in clearest were all standard, mainstream music. The Top 40 station, the former Top 40 songs station, two country stations that played nothing but the new releases. There were smaller stations, like the University of MN station, but we never really listened to them.

In Homer, here’s what tunes in on the FM dial:

  • K-Bay (Oldies)
  • K-Pen (Country)
  • K-Wave (Adult Alternative)
  • A religious channel that tunes in on about 83 different frequencies.

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Becoming Alaskan: Firewood

Firewood on the front porch

Firewood is a pretty big deal up in Alaska. I don’t have any statistics on how many folks heat with wood, but it sure feels like everyone does. It’s becoming less common within Homer city limits as households switch over to natural gas, but that’s a fraction of the total number of homes. Let me give you a run down on the heat options up here: Read more Becoming Alaskan: Firewood