My wife and I have found our destination. Twenty wooded acres backing onto a wildlife refuge and state game lands. At this point I've reviewed the soil maps and the aerial photos and the (unsatisfactory) topographical maps for hours, and we've walked the land once, for perhaps one hour.
The shade is less intense than I would have expected, the terrain drops off from a plateau more than was apparent from the maps. The lowland portion makes up perhaps 80 percent of the property, with evidence of water in numerous places. There is a county drain that defines a good portion of the back line of the parcel. The land appears to have been logged perhaps thirty years ago. There are more older trees than I might have expected, but all in some way unsuited for timber harvest. The younger trees are remarkably tall and straight, appearing to be excellent poles for construction purposes.
Initial plans involve temporary housing on the property, such as an RV. Mushroom culture is an obvious project in the setting. I want to get layers and rabbits started as soon as possible, with portable shelters. Contemplating a hoophouse that might go over the RV and contain the chicken shelter and rabbit hutch as well during the first winter. Of course much observation actually on the land is required, so the initial development needs to be mutable while we learn how the property behaves.
First thing we need to do is get a driveway cut into it at some place, deep enough to reach the utility line cut and perhaps a bit further, to give us space for the RB, to park the car and to place the shipping container with our worldly possessions (we'll be buying one in NJ, loading our stuff and having it taken to the new land).
Correction, the true first thing we need to do is get the NJ property ready for the market.
We are making a great leap into the unknown.
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