Seems like this will be the access road (1/2)
After several failed attempts to find a good track for the access road to the farm we settled on the trail that we used first to get to the farm on horseback. Back in August we paid a few guys with machete to clean that trail and remove brushwood left and right so that we can see what it might take to widen it and turn it into a dirt road for a good 4WD vehicle.
The following sequence of pictures shows how the now cleaned up trail looks like. The person walking in front of me is Didimo our neighbor. We have to cross his land and the land of one of his neighbors to get to the farm. We are at the far end.
In rural Panama a good relationship with your neighbors is very important. They don’t have to grant your right of way. It’s a good idea to establish an amicable relationship with your neighbors and then have them grant you right of way in writing. Once you have that documented you are far better protected than without. Without you may end up with a piece of land with no access and would need a helicopter to get there ;-)
We are currently evaluating what’s the best and cost effective way to wide this trail so that we can enter initially with the Jeep and later with a truck. At some point in time this will have to become a regular road. Of course there is no hurry and road building is an expensive activity but what you see here is how it starts.
One option is to use a backhoe/loader. The other is to use a bulldozer. Both have their pros and cons. The bulldozer is a brute-force attack tool. It have a lot of power and simply pushes whatever is in its track forward and to the side. Bulldozers are usually the tool of choice for dirt roads.
We have a few boulders to the right of the trail and at higher elevation than the trail itself. Some look like they may split into pieces and if they do, they might be useful material for the road. Dirt turns into mud when it rains. Stone material helps a lot to provide something for the tires to grab onto.
It would be pitty to simply let this material slam into the river 30m below the trail to the left. Maybe a backhoe/loader can handle these boulders and other stones more delicately so that we can use the material.
Plus the rental cost for a backhoe/loader is about 3 times less than for a bulldozer. I guess we have to take operators of both types of machine to the trail and have them advice us on what their favorite tool can do.
Here is another good picture of these boulders. I guess you touch one and the rest might just start moving towards you. So at this particular spot caution is required when removing the dirt under these boulders.
The trail crosses a little creek. We will have to come up with a solution to let the water pass beneath the road so that it doesn’t erode our road.
The next one is the final picture of the first part of the trail leading to the farm. If you look closely, you can see a barb wire fence and a “door”. Beyond that fence Didimo’s land starts. This is about half the way to the farm.
I’ll show you the second part shortly.
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