One month after moving in we finally found the time to go on a hike in the national forest. We headed off into the woods by following the creek that borders our property. I figured that if we stayed next to the creek I should be able to find my way back to the house without too much trouble.
As we set out full of energy we found plenty of normal and expected hiking finds – a turtle shell, moss covered rocks and deer or bear scratched tree trunks.
And then we had the real surprise. The first discovery was a pile of rocks that due to the square raised piece of land behind it, made us think it was the remains of a chimney.
A few yards away, however, there was no doubt that we had located a second homesite. This pile of rocks more clearly resembled a fireplace and surrounding it in a square shape was the rock foundation of the outer walls.
As we stood there I was torn between the desire to leave it all at peace and a strong urge to rustle through the leaves and rocks for some remaining piece of home life. Ultimately, we just observed and took pictures.
Can you imagine the kind of people it took to eek a living out of this very steep and rocky land? As we observed the site and I tried to go back in time to visualize life here in the early 1900’s, I suddenly understood why it required six days to get to town and back before the use of cars and highways. I had recently read that bit of information while studying this area we have decided to call home. And when sitting in our warm cabin with a concrete driveway, which was only a ten minute walk from this site, it was hard to fathom it took that long. Somehow, as we stood beside these stone ruins with mountains and trees in every direction, it was all clear. How humorous it would be to the people who once lived in these remains, if they heard me declare that I now live 45 minutes from the closest grocery store!
When I was younger and used to explore the land across the street from my house in Miami, I dreamed of finding an old abandoned Hansel and Gretel type home. This find is just that kind of thing. It has whet my appetite and I am anxious to return and find more evidence of the people who boldly scraped out a living here, far from civilization a century ago.