Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Elk Pellet fuel

We have a pellet stove in the basement. It is the primary source of heat for the house. I like the pellet stove better than our central forced air heat.

The forced air heat dries out the air, cycles on and off in an annoying manner, and most important, I consider the propane that it runs on politically incorrect.

On the other hand the pellet stove heat is steady and uses renewable wood pellets.

Therein lies the problem. This time of year all the hardware stores run out of the 40 lbs bag of pellets. So, unless you've bought ahead, it is easy to run out.

On a recent walk on the trail by the house, I had to step over some elk pellets. That got me thinking. In a recent trip to India, I noticed that the cow patties from the cows that where EVERYWHERE where quickly picked up, dried, and used as fuel. I even saw large, geometrically well contructed pills of cow dung for sale at the side of the road. Nothing goes to waste in India.

Anyway, I noticed that the elk pellets where about the same size and shape as the pellets that the pellet stove takes. I had a mad vision of putting up a portapotty that would be inviting to elk, and collecting the pellets so that they would automatically dry in the hot Colorado sun. Then, I would make my rounds, pick up the dried pellets and feed them to the pellets stove.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Humingbirds and ticks

Two days ago, I heard the first humingbird. This morning I saw the first tick. Spring is here at 8,000+ feet.