Thursday, December 15, 2005

Snow Forts

When you're a kid, you can dream up the most incredible plans for a snow fort. The reality, though, is that you very rarely can execute the plan. Yes, you can tunnel and build. And in the end, you can be proud of the result. But I have to tell you something: there is nothing like being a full grown adult and building a snow fort!

And that's just what Tyler and I did last night.

Before I get too deep in to the details of last night, I must provide some background into why I take my snow forting so seriously.

It all started the moment I saw Empire Strikes Back. The opening of that movie has our heroes on the artic planet of Hoth. The Rebel forces have devised an intricate labyrinth of ice and snow. Outside are a series of snow trenches that provide cover for the dug in Rebel forces. It was the snow fort par excellence.

Fast forward to 1993. I am a senior in highschool. A buddy and I are bored and driving around town. I see a large pile of snow in a parking lot and suggest we go make a fort. We climbed up to the top of the pile and started digging away with our gloved hands. No good. We're seniors, we can do better than this. So off to our garages to get some tools.

Back at the site, we continue digging straight down through this pile of snow. Eventually, it gets too deep to throw the snow out of the hole, so one of us stands halfway in the hole while the other one digs at the bottom and hands shovels of snow up. We finally bottom out, the completed shaft is somewhere between 10-12 feet deep.

Now we start to hollow out the pile and create a "room" We decided to leave a pillar of snow in the middle as a support, but in the end, we had a nice room that you could walk around the pillar. We even carved out little nooks in the side walls and put votive candles in them. (We didn't even know that that's what they were called)

Other guys showed up to see what we were doing and we planned to sleep in the fort that night. We had 5 guys down in there all able to stand and talk around the pillar.

But our plans were dashed. Because we hadn't been careful when we started digging the main shaft, we had tossed large chunks of snow out onto the sidewalk and parking lot. That drew the attention of some people and in the end, law enforcement shut us down. The officer requested that we destroy our fort, and for good reason: there was an elementary school nearby and if one of those kids found the fort, they may not be able to get out. And if the thing caved....lights out.

So, we destroyed our fort.

*moment of silence*

*wipes minute tear and clears throat*

Anyway, fast forward to last night. I want to make a snow fort and Tyler can come along for the ride. I survey the landscape, no large piles to work with in our front yard. This will have to be a classic snow brick construction. Out with the rubbermaid tub. I get to work with Tyler right there beside me. Eventually we have a good base for the wall that will face our adversary. Some of the neighbor kids show up and see what we're doing, and they join in.

When all was finished, we had a nice fortification. I'll have to get some pictures and post them later...as well as the battle stories that are sure to come.

6 Comments:

At 12/15/2005 7:33 PM, Blogger T said...

That always sounds so fun... but I'm such a mom girl! I always worry someone is goin to get hurt... has that ever really happened? You're such a big kid! I love your personality. What a great dad. Tyler must think you're the greatest.

 
At 12/16/2005 5:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know what you need to do.....yeah, it's me... Get photos of the Very Cool Fort and the snow men and some day on your family room wall, you can have a display of all the crazy snow forts from over the years....Every Christmas Hez could pull out the snow fort photos and hang them on the walls as part of the winter decorations. Family history is in the making. You are a man with unlimited snow forts in your genes. What potential you have! Talented and gifted you are.

 
At 12/16/2005 10:53 AM, Blogger Angela said...

That story from high school is way cool - I was wondering what would happen if it caved in, though. Boys don't think about that stuff - you're "Wild at Heart"!

 
At 12/17/2005 10:12 PM, Blogger Beefy said...

Here I've been waiting for you to update since "Untitled" because that's always the screen that comes up when I come to your blog! So, I have some catching up to do, I see!

Ahh, the days of snow forts, king on the mountain, and giant snow-dinosaurs. Those were the days....I'll have an excuse to relive all that in a few years, won't I! :)

 
At 12/17/2005 10:21 PM, Blogger Andrea said...

That is really cool, Nate!! I didn't know you built a huge fort in highschool. Did Mom know you did that? I wonder if you would have made it through the night sleeping in it. Who were the buddies that helped you? That's just really cool.

 
At 12/21/2005 9:30 AM, Blogger iridium said...

It started with Luke and I.

Then Paul M., Kevin R, and Shawn S. showed up. I think others may have been there too.

Yeah...Luke and I had some good times back then. We never were all out rebellious...I'd consider it more of an "Intelligent Misheviousness"

 

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