Day 51: Digging up

Day 51:

The cavern I’m following south went deeper than I was expecting, but I found some iron ore. That iron ore led to another cavern behind the one I’d started in. Directions are hard to follow is what I’m saying.

It rained all day aboveground today. My duckens are happy about it but the cows look kind of wet and miserable.

A black and white map of the caverns, side view. Shows that the author would have gone down some steps to the 2nd level, down another set to the 3rd level, down into the 4th level which has no steps, the proceeded backward toward the original point, dug up one level, and found herself in a cavern that was directly below where she started.
Around and around we go


Day 50: Peaceful Mining

Day 50:

I spent all day digging holes. It’s what I’m good at.

I’m tired now.

Black and white line sketch of a flat floor proceeding from the foreground to 2/3 of the way to the back, when the walls start to curve and a number of smaller chambers are visible.
The cavern I’m mining out right now, shaded badly.

Day 49: Sand Mining

Day 49:

The lake at the edge of the southern entrance to my cave house is thick and deep with sand that melts at a nice temperature for making glass.

Technically, making glass is a bit of a luxury when one is stranded on a planet with nothing and no one except what one makes for one’s self. But coddammit, it’s nice to be able to see what’s hunting me from the other side of the walls, and glass blocks, while not easy to make and easy for a giraffe corgi monster to blow up, are still better for seeing out the walls than granite.

So I’ve been digging up bags of sand today to put in my smelter and make glass from. Which means, once again, I’ve spent the day wet from top to bottom.

Bonus: it looks like there’s a cavern under the lake (which makes sense considering that I’ve dug into the roof of one right next to the lake) so one wrong shovel full of sand and I could be washed into a hole.

Watercolor of a lake beach. In the far background, blue sky, then some trees on a grassy area which gives way to a beach ringed with sand, then blue waters of a lake.
It’s not bad as beaches on extremely hostile planets go.

Day 48: shoveling dirt

Day 48:

The biggest difference between mining a seam of rock deep in the earth and mining at the surface is there tends to be a lot more actual dirt on the surface. Plus, it’s almost all at your feet.

When I’m mining a seam of rock I tend to dig down to a point where I’m facing the rock as if I was facing a person, and then dig forward, tunnel-like. That way I’m not constantly bending down. I’m digging chunks out of a wall of rock with a pickaxe that I’m swinging at a number of angles, but most of them standing angles.

But the hole I’m digging right now is below my feet, which means with every strike I not only have to bend over (a LOT, my back would like you to know) but also scoop out what I dug immediately, and that’s a lot of shoveling.

I think today’s digging got me deep enough that I can dig straight ahead instead of down for a while. The seam was sizable, which is good, because the stone is valuable and as long as I’m still in walking distance of my cave house I may as well be “making money” off it.

No signs of The Company in the air or on the ground. Not sure if I’m relieved or disappointed. If they were here and I missed them, at least I’d know they were here… but knowing I missed them would be really hard on my brain.

Tomorrow I finish digging out this hole and then I keep digging toward the mountain.

Black and white line sketch of two large garbage bag sized sacks which contain rocks (rocks not shown). Labeled "My two rock carrying sacks made from cow hide. The cow was wild, a victim of a giraffe corgi."
Maybe making that wheelbarrow would be a good idea.

Day 47: Surface mining

Day 47:

Still working  on covering up signs that I’m here. I’m thinking that trees might help. From space they don’t really show much structure underneath them, especially the giant black oaks that are growing around the shoreline.

Alternatively I could cover everything up with dirt, free my animals, and pray I survive to the mountain.

My second entrance is about a third of the way to the mountain, so my plan to dig toward the hills is working, for some value of “working” anyway.

Meanwhile, near that entrance I actually found some andesite on the surface. I’m thinking during the sunny days I may just mine it outright. I can fill the hole with the dirt and gravel I’ve taken out of the cave… which coincidentally will clean up the cave a bit. (I’ve taken to making big wood bins to dump everything  into just to get it off the floor. Hard to do with a stone shovel, but slipping on muddy floors gets old.

Sketch of a room containing 7 large boxes, 5 in the back row, two aligned to the right in the front row. Labeled (clockwise from the left) granite, andesite, diorite, rock, dirt, gravel, more rock.
Good thing this is a big room. Bad thing it’s so far away.