This house with grey weathered siding was photographed on Digby Neck, a long, narrow piece of land on the eastern side of Nova Scotia on the Bay of Fundy. The weather is harsh there on the Atlantic coast of Canada so people frequently use cedar shingles that are left unfinished and allowed to weather naturally. The beauty and character always draw me in.
I’m still fascinated by these split rail fence – this fence is on Manitoulin Island in Ontario, Canada but I have also seen them along the Blue Ridge Mountain Parkway in the Eastern U.S., also a rocky land with thin soil.
This is not a photo I used in a previous post on these fences, because of the chain-link fence in the background. But for the WoollyMuse’s challenge “fences” this seemed perfect because there are three different kinds of fences in this uncropped photo.
We saw a lot of these split rail fences as we drove down lots of roads to get to destinations unknown. JB said he remembers seeing these fences as a child when he and his father visited his great uncle’s and great cousin’s farms in the Durham, Ontario area.
They were everywhere – on working farms, along the side of roads with no farms in sight, along the road with the woods creeping to overtake them. Some were fairly new and well maintained while others were in states of disrepair. And there was a variation of this split-rail fence.
I have a fascination with fences, I like their beauty but it isn’t a political issue where I believe land should be divided and fenced instead of allowing for free-range. I can’t come down on either side – but I appreciate good fences that are aesthetically pleasing and/or functional. These were functional.
As we drove and I observed the rocky fields I realized that a good portion of the island has very thin soil so it is impossible to dig post holes deep enough to keep a fence standing. Thus the people solved their problem by designing fencing that could support itself above ground. Another version of the second set of fencing is to build the triangle with two sides connected to the upright post and put large rocks on the side that lies on the ground. They used what they had – large numbers of cedar trees that are rot resistant and rocks and a little wire. I didn’t notice any duck tape or bubble gum.