Saturday, May 12, 2012

Rock Fences

A sharp eye will spot a rock fence around here fairly quickly.  Those that settled this area obviously used them to create a fence but also to remove rocks from their fields.  Some owners have taken up the task of fixing and rebuilding, some have been relocated as a retaining wall or flower bed.  

At one time a rock fence surrounded our pasture.    Places like this, it stands straight and proud.


In another time, there was a different configuration of the land across one section of our pasture and remnants of a fence  cut through the middle of that part.  The main fence is gone, taken down before our time.  Dan has worked on the area over the years, but this year we decided to make a final push to clean up the rocks.

As we pick up the rocks, we are dumping them in a hole nearby where they removed rocks to build a barn. At least that was the explanation for the large holes in the pasture given by a neighbor who, along with his dad and granddad, grew up in the area.

IMG_0029 I am not educated on how rock fences are built, but it is our experience with this clean up that a base is established below the surface of the area on top of which rocks are stacked for the fence.  So, in the fence area, there almost is no end to the number of rocks that continue to appear.  And, this is native pasture and a rocky area anyway.

IMG_0030 I think we are finally beginning to see the end.  I was thinking today as we gathered these rocks someone many generations earlier labored over this task as well.  It goes without saying, there is no way to build or take down a rock fence without sweat and a sore back.

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