A blog about living outside, first in my car, then in tents.
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Confirmed: Cows ARE Everywhere

Last night a young man employed by a large local ranch and a woman equally informed about ranching gave me a good education about cattle and land management. First, my impressions are correct: Right now cows are everywhere. In fact, the young man works for the ranch that is running cattle through the area in which I’m currently camping. They’ve just gotten started, he says. There are many more cows to come. So, I asked, trying to find a place to camp on public land that has no cows is impossible right now? Yes, he said, at least within cell phone range. (I need cell phone reception in order to continue working. Plus it’s...
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Displaced by Cattle AGAIN

Cattle are EVERYWHERE. I saw them in the area (i.e. between cattle guards) driving to the site two nights ago. The next morning about a dozen ambled by 50 feet from the car. I piled the tents and the outdoor rugs I use for dog beds on top of the army cot someone gave me. “Cows will walk over everything,” someone pointed out recently. Last night, after the heavy rain that left both dogs wet and me curled up around Carlos’ seat, I opened the door to let Carlos out and he immediately barked. I swore, called him back in and closed the door. A while later I opened it and Carlos exited without...
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Carlos Brings Home Fly Nectar

Take a look at the pic: Carlos’ hair is brown on the neck and chest, not the back. The brown wet crap on the back is just that: cow crap. The two dogs came back from a morning romp wet. It’s possible the “swimming hole” they discovered is the cattle tank a while up the road. I wish Carlos had rolled in cow pies first and THEN swum. I made the mistake of rinsing him right next to the car — i.e. this campsite’s best parking spot. Liquified cow shit sank into the soil, creating a spa for the flies that woke me up every day since. Contrary to previous inclinations, I have been...
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I woke up at 4 a.m. to the barking of Carlos, the larger dog who sleeps outside. Next thing I knew the car was saturated with skunk smell. I burrowed my nose and mouth in my pajama shirt, crawled into the well behind the driver’s seat, put up the back seats, commanded Dwyn to migrate from the driver’s seat to the back seat, and maneuvered in. He’d warmed up the seat for me! After closing the windows I drove out and didn’t stop until I reached an open space well away from “my” meadow. Carlos, of course, followed behind. Carlos, of course, had been skunked. I hadn’t noticed that the car’s air conditioning fan...
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Cow Pies

When I was staying with my friend, my last residence before the car, my dogs had a relatively small fenced yard, so I took them out running every day or two. I discovered a US Forest Service dirt road with plentiful side roads. Signs of old campfires and not-so-old parties were common. So my first night in the car I parked in a spot there. The next few nights I poked around the area, looking for spots that were private, where any partiers or others who drove by road wouldn’t see me. I found a few, including good shade. But what my dogs found was more problematic. Did you know our USFS lands are...
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