Ken's Voyages Around the Sun

An Axe To Grind
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Over the past few weeks we've had some unwanted guests driving their small 4x4 ATVs on our property. At first we had no clue who these people were, whether neighbors or people wandering in from the nearby (but not adjoining) state lands, or what.

We've made progress in discovering more about these folks, though, and it turns out they're the neighbors - from both sides: two doors down, and one door up. We've also taken some steps to keep the ATVs away, including buying an axe and using it to drop a tree across one of the access paths leading onto our property.

The worst case is an obnoxiously loud ATV operated from two doors down, apparently by a visiting relative. He was rude enough to move a less substantial tree from across the path and ride by it (with a 10-year-old on a following ATV), even though it had a quite visible "Keep Out" sign hanging on it.

It seems when he reached the other end of the path where we have stretched across bright orange snow fence with more signs on it he turned around and went back, and hasn't returned since. But we felled the larger tree across that route as added disincentive anyway. If that doesn't work we'll look into installing a wildlife camera down there to make records and go from there.

For you see, the guy who owns that house is a state cop, and says to our face that it's not he himself ignoring our sign and trespassing (which may be true). But the annoyance starts and ends on his property by his brother or brother-in-law and his own son (Tyler) so that's disconcerting. I don't trust him for some reason, perhaps because of the fact that he says he moved out to the country for peace and quite yet runs (and allows to be run) these loud ATVs on his property and adjacent land.

The other people driving on our property came from the uphill neighbor - the just assumed we'd have no issue with them driving on our land, apparently, so they did. Part of the problem is that the former land owners allowed all this, and even rode their own ATVs, so there are some nicely laid trails down through the length of our wooded lands. Those attract the riders, unfortunately.

Anyway, the upper neighbors stopped by recently to ask permission to pass along our looped driveway for a day or so while a tree that toppled across the road blocking their use of it was cleared. We said fine with that, then mentioned the unwanted ATVs, and they copped to it being them. We have not seen them riding there since, so that seems done with now.

Those machines really annoy me with their noise, plus kill all the red and orange-spotted salamanders sunning on the trail that we like to see, plus bring up a fair amount of liability (I believe) especially for minors riding on our property.

We'll see if our new tree barrier has any effect. What really surprises me is how hard it was to chop down a 5-inch maple. I think the new axe was not sharpened.

Next up: posting to keep the hunters out. That should be fun too.

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