On Saturday we worked on the rip wrap – rocks embedded in the hillside to reduce erosion. We removed a lot of these embedded rocks to put the steps in. Some were huge. All but one I was able to carry or roll up the hill. You can see some of the big rocks in the “before” picture from the last post.
Most of the rocks were smaller, and the plan was to not use the really large ones for the rip wrap restoration. Some time ago I made a short rock wall (one layer, or course of rocks) to hold back the erosion at the highest point of the property, and the idea is to use the larger rocks as a second course on that low rock wall. The rock wall keeps dirt away from the masonry wall shown in the photos above and to the right of the steps, protecting it from damage. I’ll get some pictures of this rock wall work in a later post.
Here is the first of the “after” pictures, at about 1:00 p.m. on a day that got to 99 degrees Fahrenheit. Susan did much of the rip wrap installation. I cleaned up dirt ahead of her and finished off at the top. The process of putting in rip wrap involved digging out niches and placing the rocks one at a time, starting at the bottom and working up.
On Saturday I mostly sifted rock out of dirt. We have pretty much decided to put in a ninth step at the top, and so we need more of the various sizes of rocks to fill the voids in the blocks of that step.
There is going to be a lot of dirt left over from this project. I will likely haul the dirt to a lower elevation on the property and stash it in some unobtrusive spot.
The rip wrap in this area has been overrun by the dirt of years of erosion of the hill above it. Susan is rinsing away some of this buildup to reveal the nice rip wrap underneath.
Here is a closeup of the rip wrap at the top of the steps. We still have to do the rip wrap on the other side of the steps – between the wall and the steps. That should be fairly easy, because the dirt is loose from being dug out for the PVC work. Today was 101 degrees Fahrenheit. We’ll try to work on the rip wrap again next weekend.