Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Slip Sliding Away

Our driveway has always been an interesting topic of discussion for visitors. It is 3/4 of a mile of gravel road. Comparatively, by West Virginia standards, it is not overly narrow or curvy. Of course, not all of our visitors are from West Virginia, or regular drivers of West Virginia country roads.

Our driveway does boast a few interesting features. The first of which, you encounter almost immediately. This little knoll looks innocent enough, but driving up it puts your car at angle which prevents you from seeing where the road goes after you pass the crest.

When you finally can see the road,  your eyes are confronted with the following:

A steep downhill immediately followed by an even steeper and longer uphill which shows up better in this picture that was taken earlier in the season.

After those initial hurdles, the road settles into another couple small hills and a bit of flat driving before ending at our houses. First time visitors would relay their experience of thrill or anxiety in navigating Blackberry Lane. Those of us more seasoned to the road would merely roll our eyes, or perhaps snicker a bit. The road didn't phase us one bit unless of course, there was snow on the ground.

Then last spring the hollow between the second set (smaller set) of hills betrayed us. It began to sink. It was just a bit, but enough to make the drive just a bit more interesting.

This winter brought extra snow, freezing, and more cracks in this spot on the driveway. The first rains of spring came, and the drive slipped even more. It slipped to the point that even we stopped using it with our two wheel vehicles. Even with our all wheel drive vehicles, we had to be careful where we drove to avoid dragging the bottom. We warned visitors with low cars to not use our road.

Then it happened. Our continual and heavy rains this spring caused the driveway to slip and slide to the point that it was no longer usable.

We weren't sure what we were going to do. We do have an alternative driveway available to us, but it is not our legal right away. Our neighbor is very gracious to allow us to use it when we need to, but using it permanently is not an option. We do have equipment that could do this job, but not the knowledge as to the best way to fix the problem, or the time to do the job. Nor do we have the cash to pay someone to do the job.

At about the same time the drive had its big slip, the man we sold our bulldozer to came to pick it up. He brought a contractor with him to help with the job. The contractor was interested in some equipment my mom had and no longer needed. He asked how much she'd want for it. We asked how much he'd want to fix our driveway; both the slip and a few other places that needed attention. In the end he got the equipment he wanted and mom got a half price deal on the driveway.

He started working on it this week.

I wouldn't recommend using our drive right now.


  1. Stephanie, I'm so glad to hear you're having help with that. God is good to bring help when it's needed, isn't He?
    Aunt N.

  2. wow!! that is some repair!! holy moley! so glad you're getting it fixed, though.

  3. WOW! What a huge undertaking! Hope it turns out great!

  4. Wow, it must be interesting living on a farm, good luck fixing that road:)