Saturday, October 8, 2011

Shoveling out the Driveway

Topographically speaking, Valdese, North Carolina is not a flat place.  If there is a flat place in Valdese, it was made that way with heavy equipment.  Valdese is very close to some good sized mountains, and has some very nice views in spots, but it's actually located in the foothills region of North Carolina.  You can tell this because 25 % of the businesses around here (80% of which are thrift stores or beauty parlors) call themselves Foothills something or other.  This is not to be confused with Piedmont, which I believe is French for Foothills, but is an entirely different region, somewhat to the east of us.  Anyway, Valdese is a pretty little town with an interesting history and some interesting buildings,  and could almost be a tourist destination if the universe had aligned itself just a tad differently.  All that aside though, it's not a flat place.

Our property is roughly rectangular, almost 3 acres, sloping almost but not quite gently from the gravel road we live on to a creek, then banks sharply up toward some houses in a relatively new development.  That area is completely wooded and in the summer we can't see those houses.    We have huge trees and lots of elbow room and it's nice.  But it's not flat.

The gravel road we live on comes off a paved residential road, travels downhill toward our property then curves.  Our paved driveway comes off of that curve, continues down hill on the west side of the house then curves around behind the house.  The driveway area behind the house is about as flat as things get around here and it was made that way at some unknown time in the past, almost certainly with heavy equipment.

The problem is, it doesn't drain.  So when it rains water streams from the paved residential street, down our gravel street, down our driveway, and ends up in the area of the drive way behind our house.  It brings along with it a lot of dirt and other residue it picks up along the way, and in very short order that area of the driveway is caked with mud.  It dries out & turns into dirt, and the driveway disappears.  

Now there are drainage ditches, but they're apparently just a good intention.  They've never worked, and I'm sure are only there because some permit issuing authority from the local government required them to be there so they could collect their permit issuing fee.

When we bought the place there was no indication of any kind of issue with the small part of the driveway that is behind our house.  Of course I'm pretty sure there was a drought when we bought this place.  I shoveled the driveway out once several months ago.  I started to it out again today, but decided it doesn't really matter.   Shoveling dirt from a driveway by hand is hard work, even on a low humidity day.

 With the new septic system & grading done in the back yard, maybe it will drain.  But I bet it won't.

1 comment:

Patti Anne said...

Although not perfect, it looks like most of it ran away last night.