Friday, November 17, 2017

Buster’s Gate Smiley, TX - Nov 12 - 14

Buster’s Gate Smiley, TX - Sunday, November 12, 2017
Morning 64 Degrees, Wind ENE calm Mph, Humidity 100%, overcast.
Afternoon 77 Degrees, Wind ESE at 4 to 10 Mph, Humidity 73%, rain.

Rain (0.007 inches) did not start until afternoon (almost dark) and was light rain most of the evening, just enough to have rain gear on. There was a short period of moderate rain but it did not last long. A busier day with equipment moving in and getting setup here at the gate. 


Buster’s Gate Smiley, TX - Monday, November 13, 2017
Morning 66 Degrees, Wind NE at calm, Humidity 100%, mostly cloudy.
Afternoon 82 Degrees, Wind E at 4 to 8 Mph, Humidity 50%, partly cloudy.

Mud, overnight and this morning, stick to your shoes type, but with the sun trying to break thru it dried pretty fast. Very busy today with trucks (and sand box trucks) of all types coming and going. I installed the shoe brush and that helps a lot.


Buster’s Gate Smiley, TX - Tuesday, November 14, 2017
Morning 55 Degrees, Wind SSE at calm, Humidity 100%, partly cloudy.
Afternoon 81 Degrees, Wind SSE at 4 to 12 Mph, Humidity 51%, partly cloudy.

Close gate? This was not a fun day. There are multiple land owners and a renter running cattle that access thru this road. The cattle rancher is a renter and complaining about a gate further down having the lock broken and the gate was open. Yesterday a land owner came in saying he was the land owner but I only took down the plate number and not his name. Land owners can get huffy about being challenged accessing their own property so I did not push about the name also not knowing there were multiple land owners here. So the cattle rancher came today wanting to know all who came in the gate so he could figure out who opened the gate. While ths was going on I called my coordinator to advise him what was going on here. Also when I talked with the land owner yesterday he told me about the cattle rancher, so I knew he was knowledgeable about the property here.

 When the coordinator called back ten minutes later an said we were released and ok to stay overnight with the generator. I stopped logging vehicles in the gate. I decided to let my wife sleep until she woke up for her to get good rest. One of the oil company men came in and said we are not released also called the gate coordinator back and his first reply was who is this? I told him and he said that was a mistake about being released. All this took awhile to settle out but I had started to take apart our walkway to pack it back into buster in the afternoon. I never questioned the coordinator about being released, but I knew the oil company still was working inside at the pad a mile and a half away.

Very emotional day for me I was thinking we lost the job because of the cattle rancher and land owner being dissatisfied with our work but just a mistake on the coordinators part when he called me.



Sunday, November 12, 2017

Buster’s Gate Smiley, TX - Nov 5 - 11

Vaquero Village RV Park, Botines, TX - Nov 5 - 8
Three days it was sunny and the fourth overcast but no rain. It was nice get up when we wanted go to bed when we wanted and no gate alarm to answer, great time off. Every day we made it into Ladero to explore and have lunch / dinner a nice mini vacation.


Vaquero Village RV Park, Botines, TX - Nov 9
we did something different, we stayed home at Buster today and made plans to take Buster to Crystal City to wait for another gate. In parking Buster here we did not “spread out” too much. We kept in the on the go mode easier to start moving again.


Vaquero Village RV Park, Botines, TX - Friday, November 10, 2017
Morning 55 Degrees, Wind N at 4 to 8 Mph, Humidity 90%, overcast.
Still go up later today and did not move Buster until after eleven o’clock.

El Dorado Ranch Resort, Crystal City, TX
Afternoon 64 Degrees, Wind E at 2 to 4 Mph, Humidity 68%, overcast.
At the company RV park staying in the go mode not “spreading out too much” waiting for our next gate assignment. While we were in the driveway getting our bearings a guy came over letting me know about low wires. Talking with him he (Fred & Gladis) and I were at a gate together in 2015 in Asherton, Texas. After parking Buster and setting up we went into Carrizo Springs for Mexican, a place we have had tak out from other years.

After returning to Buster we got a call on my wifes phone from an unknown number so we did not answer that latter I got a call from our last coordinator we have a new gate tomorrow with a different coordinator. When I tried to call the phone number was out of service. Calling the coordinator back to get the number I recognized it as the strange call we did not answer.

The new to us gate, starting tomorrow is southeast of San Antonio


El Dorado Ranch Resort, Crystal City, TX - Saturday, November 11, 2017
Morning 57 Degrees, Wind NNW calm, Humidity 94%, cloudy.

Buster was moving after nine o’clock but it was hard to get up and get moving early today as we have been in lazy mode for a week. No “big roads” today as we took US 83 north a mile or so and looped around the south side of Crystal City and onto TX 65 to TX 85 northeast to TX 97 thru Pleasanton, goy we both wanted to stop and get some BBQ brisket but we were pressed for time.

Buster’s Gate Smiley, TX
Afternoon 78 Degrees, Wind ESE at 3 to 13 Mph, Humidity 59%, overcast.
From TX 97 to US 87 into Smiley and south and onto county road (dirt to the gate one hundred sixty miles here about twelve-thirty, only thirty minutes late. Coming in the dirt road we passed a EV going out, the people we are relieving. The coordinator who called while we were on TX 97 was already on US 87 when he called so he relieved them while we were on the road. That worked well as there is not much room for two RV and three vehicles. The oil company is bringing in a frack operation for the work here at this gate. There are other oil wells in operation so there is other traffic to come in and record.
Looking in the gate
While arriving and setting up talking with the coordinator Rahlee was “talkiing” to us wanting to come outside where we were talking with the coordinator just outside Buster’s door. After the coordinator left I continued working outside and I could here but nor see Rahlee, then I caught a glimpse of him going under Buster. We both tried to get him to come in but no luck. I decided to ignore him for a bit thinking he would come out. Then I could here him again not see him, following the sound of him I found him on top of the left front wheel. We had been keeping a close eye on the door as I did not think he got out there then I realized it was the drivers window was open. Rahlee jumped out there wandering around under Buster then finally getting on top of the left front tire. Glad that is solved.

Looking out the gate



Monday, November 6, 2017

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX Oct 30 - Nov 4

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Monday, October 30, 2017
Morning 53 Degrees, Wind SSE at 1 to 3 Mph, Humidity 65%, mostly sunny.
Afternoon 86 Degrees, Wind SE at 8 to 10 Mph, Humidity 25%, .

We have had a cool weekend with temperatures getting down into the forties and me in warm long pants for the weekend.

Rig cleaning crew came in today in preparation for the drill rig move out. They started the drill rig move out and pieces and parts on flat bed trucks. These are heavy hauls requiring trailers with five axles tractors with four axles to handle the weight.

This animal hung around for about five nights
coming before dart staying until eight or nine in the morning
Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Tuesday, October 31, 2017
Morning 65 Degrees, Wind NE calm to 1 Mph, Humidity 96%, mostly cloudy.
Afternoon 68 Degrees, Wind N at 8 to 16 Mph, Humidity 63%, partly cloudy.

The company supplying the onsite housing were in early for the move today of five house trailers, water and waste water tanks. Then there are steps and other parts all on trailers pulled by pickup trucks. Trucks continues hauling loads with equipment used in the drilling operation. 


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Morning 57 Degrees, Wind NW at calm to 1 Mph, Humidity 89%, mostly cloudy.
Afternoon 84 Degrees, Wind N at 4 to 9 Mph, Humidity 50%, partly sunny.

Big pieces moved out today all but one, the tower it is loaded on its dolly ready to roll out in the morning.

Another drill rig moved in four miles further down the road from our location and traffic coming to that gate is stopping trying to enter for us. I have to ask what rig are they looking for and direct them four miles further down the road. So all first timers want to stop thinking they are at their destination and I direct them four miles more, that they are now only half way there to their destination. I did notice a few drivers stop look recheck their paperwork and continue on but more stop and ask to enter here.

Cat TV
Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Thursday, November 2, 2017
Morning 71 Degrees, Wind SSW at 1 to 2 Mph, Humidity 96%, partly sunny.
Afternoon 92 Degrees, Wind SSE at 7 to 12 Mph, Humidity 47%, partly sunny.

With the tower rolling out this morning the drill rig is moved out. I took our trash into the trash trailer still onsite. On the well site there is still material on pallets that will be moved out frcak tanks to be drained and cleaned stll more to be done.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Friday, November 3, 2017
Morning 74 Degrees, Wind SSE at 1 to 3 Mph, Humidity 96%, partly sunny.
Afternoon 90 Degrees, Wind SE at 8 to 13 Mph, Humidity 55%, partly sunny.

It was a slower traffic day and late this afternoon we got the word, Close Gate, we are done as of midnight tonight. I started the breakdown for Buster’s move. Worked outside on that til near dark. A lot more to breakdown and put away things in Buster for the move off site.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Saturday, November 4, 2017
Morning 77 Degrees, Wind ESE at 3 to 5 Mph, Humidity 86%, cloudy.

Very busy morning breaking down and packing away. While we are doing our thing, there are trucks coming in removing the supplies and draining the frack tanks. I just opened the gate for them to do their work as we are off the clock I made no attempt to keep track of them. There were still some that were looking for the new drill rig and directed them down the road four more miles. Some drivers see a gate guard and think that is where they are going.

About noon Buster rolled out the gate, I put the lock on and started the slow drive down the dirt road, four and a half miles.

Vaquero Village RV Park, Botines, TX
Afternoon 90 Degrees, Wind SSE at 9 to 13 Mph, Humidity 52%, partly sunny.

I sent my wife ahead to the paved road in Tan Jan. And Buster caught up after a slow going down the dirt road trying to keep the dust as low as possible. Then we turn east on the TX 255 and south on US 83, with a total trip of nineteen miles here to the RV park. After setting Buster on a site and taking a shower we drove into Ladero for dimmer and shopping. Getting back to Buster we crashed after a big work day moving.

Buster parked at Vaquero Village RV Park


Thought for the Day:
If the earth were really flat, Cats would have pushed everything over the edge by now.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Oct 19 - 29

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Thursday, October 19, to 29
Rahlee in the box
Things are routine day after day, there are dump trailers hauling out drilling’s, stinky stuff with a  petroleum smell coming from the material inside the trailer. Some shift change people and other daily visitors. Night traffic is slow and we are now getting different animals coming around as night comes on and even hanging around the generator for the heat coming off the radiator. There is no attempt to try and go to the gate, that is good for us. There are water trucks and bulk material trailers, material for the “Drilling Mud”.


We are happy with the shopping as these stores are the super Walmart and H E B Plus stores that have a large selection available not the mini supers (old Walmarts with only a limited grocery section. It is a twenty-one mile trip with the first four and a half miles dirt road.

Young Wildabeast


Saturday, October 21, 2017

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Oct 12 - 18

Buster’s Gate, Ladero, TX - Thursday, October 12, 2017
Morning 66 Degrees, Wind W calm, Humidity 77%, cloudy.
Afternoon 88 Degrees, Wind  at  to  Mph, Humidity 48%, partly sunny.

Slow traffic morning workers are just busy in at the well. We are not having a lot of “sales” vehicles showing up to sell their company’s services. Other well drilling sites there was a continus flow of vehicles coming in and trying to sell the company something. Some it was almost no “pitch time” as most of the time they were on site was spent driving in to the “company trailer” and returning back to the gate.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Friday, October 13, 2017
Morning 73 Degrees, Wind S at 1 to 3 Mph, Humidity 100%, mostly cloudy.
Afternoon 92 Degrees, Wind SSW at 5 to 8 Mph, Humidity 51%, partly sunny.

Much slower day today other than the daily shift change vehicles in and out water tankers bringing in liquid for the drilling Mud. They are now hauling out drilling spoils so there are large dump trucks hauling that off site. Those trucks are emitting an oder, they do not smell nice.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Monday, October 16, 2017
Morning 62 Degrees, Wind NNW at 5 to 8 Mph, Humidity 64%, partly sunny.
Afternoon 78 Degrees, Wind NNW at 11 to 21 Mph, Humidity 29%, partly sunny.

Gifted with BBQ from McBee’s in Pleasanton, a vendor catered meals to the crew here at the well site and on the way out we were given BBQ brisket dinners, nice treat. Meant more as we know the McBee’s BBQ from Pleasanton and Jourdenton, Texas.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Morning 54 Degrees, Wind WNW at 1 to 2 Mph, Humidity 84%, sunny.
Afternoon 82 Degrees, Wind NNE at 3 to 7 Mph, Humidity 26%, partly sunny.


Dall Ram Goat alert, mid morning a truck comes to go out the gate with this goat following it. During the rig move in days I was leaving the gates open during the daylight hours. After the rig move was complete I have been closing the gates after every vehicle. Actually only opening only one gate unless a tractor trailer came in I was opening two gates. The latching part was not aligning properly so I was using a rope to  keep the gate closed as it wanted to swing open. No the goat arrived and was in the gate area for more than three hours wandering the area around Buster and the generator trailer and walked up the roads but continued “looking” to make an exit. He was looking out to the dirt road up and down the fence line. He finally went up the road on Buster’s passenger side.

Latter snail mail arrived with our coordinator. I comented about the goat hanging here at the gate attempting to exit. With the gate not latching it was a problem and he called for a maintenance company to adjust the gate.

I spent most of the evening sorting thru our mail delivery, priority checks. We had two refund checks and payments from our Northrup Grumman insurance that refunds my payments to medicare supplemental insurance and the prescription plan for me.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Wednesday, October 18, 2017
Morning 60 Degrees, Wind SE at 1 to 2 Mph, Humidity 92%, mostly sunny.
Afternoon 84 Degrees, Wind SE at 6 to 12 Mph, Humidity 32%, mostly sunny.
Road on Buster's passengers side
Continued sorting thru the mail delivery today. Late afternoon maintenance arrived and got the gate adjustment that was all. I was also looking for them to have a welder and weld the gate pin to the other gate. We are making do until I go shopping getting some worm clamps that I can clamp the pin to the other gate. In some way every gate site has d orignal operation unique to that location. Here I was happy that first Saturday when the welder came and installed the expanded metal to the cattle guard to allow safe walking to the gate latch. And even more happy he installed a pin to keep one gate in position when the other gate opened. At the time I did not realize he put the pin on the wrong gate. As gate people we want the gates to open in as the vehicles pull up looking for access to the well site. If they open out the vehicle has to backup for the gate to open. The way the gate latch here works the right gate (coming in) has to open first or you have to move that for the lock plate to pass behind the right gate. Most vehicles arriving at the gate only need one gate to enter.





Saturday, October 14, 2017

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Oct 7 - 11

Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX -  Saturday, October 7, 2017
Morning 73 Degrees, Wind SE at 1 to 3 Mph, Humidity 95%, partly sunny.
Afternoon 91 Degrees, Wind E at 6 to 13 Mph, Humidity 49%, mostly sunny.

Well the mmorning came and went with only a few pickup trucks nothing large until almost noon when the two skid trailers came thru the gate. Latter in the afternoon housing trailers and a couple of rig loads came in the gate.
Expanded metal walkway
During the morning a welder came and installed expanded metal on top of the cattle guard to allow us to walk there safely. Stepping on the pipes to on latch the gate is not very safe as we are also holding a I Pad in one hand. He also welded a pin to pin that gate open or closed, it will not blow in the wind. The pin will drop down thru the expanded metal walkway to hold the gate closed. I talked to the coordinator about stopping by the Home Depot for some wood for me when he come to deliver our sensor for the gate.  He came and delivered the sensor and wood late when my wife was working.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX -  Sunday, October 8, 2017
Morning 76 Degrees, Wind ESE calm, Humidity 88%, mostly sunny.
Afternoon 93 Degrees, Wind SSE at 7 to 12 Mph, Humidity 46%, mostly sunny.

Rig parts coming in today one got stuck turning into the gate needing a large forklift to push as he was turning in to the gate. I walked in further to allow the rig tower to clear the turn in thru the gate. Another rig part was following behind that one.

Rig tower coming in 
When I got up this morning my wife said the wood I ordered arrived last night. The delivery made a busy morning for me making a wood deck walk and checking vehicles in and out.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo,, TX - Monday, October 9, 2017
Morning 75 Degrees, Wind SSE at 3 to 5 Mph, Humidity 88%, partly cloudy.
Afternoon 98 Degrees, Wind SE at 10 to 14 Mph, Humidity 42%, mostly sunny.

The last of the rig parts are here today with water tankers coming in for the “Drilling Mud” along with other chemicles. A crane came in to lift and assist in the assembly of the rig parts. 

Rahlee checking the tape holding the foil in place

Buster’s Gate, Laredo,, TX - Tuesday, October 10, 2017
Morning 77 Degrees, Wind ESE at 2 to 4 Mph, Humidity 92%, cloudy.
Afternoon 80 Degrees, Wind N at 13 to 25 Mph, Humidity 53%, partly sunny.

I saw the neighbors for the first time today picture, they are on the ranch across the road from our location. Vehicle traffic is still high with parts and material being brought into the work site. 

neighbor cattle
We have our area setup complete now as I was able to have a roller come to flatten the ruts in our normal walking area. I did have to move most again while the roller packed the ruts in the local area. The decking is laying flat now and when we step off into the dirt there is no stepping into ruts.


Buster’s Gate, Laredo, TX - Wednesday, October 11, 2017
Morning 62 Degrees, Wind N at 3 to 5 Mph, Humidity 70%, cloudy, light rain.
Afternoon 74 Degrees, Wind NNW at 2 to 5 Mph, Humidity 62%, mostly cloudy.

It is back, the rain, started last night just enough to make mud and stick to our shoes. Well that got me into gear and setup our shoe brush and hoe to scrape and clean mud from our shoes before going inside Buster. Slower work day for me and nights have been easy for my wife. 



Sunday, October 8, 2017

Buster’s Gate, San Roman, TX - Oct 4 - 6

Buster’s Gate, San Roman, TX - Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Morning 77 Degrees, Wind E at 5 to 8 Mph, Humidity 96%, mostly cloudy.
Afternoon 84 Degrees, Wind NNE  at 6 to 14 Mph, Humidity 75%, mostly cloudy.

.13 rain today, this is our fourteenth day at this gate (over nine inches of rain so far at this gate) and we have had rain seven days this is not fun.

Packaged inside the canopy case was a cardboard stiffener I pulled that out and put aside. Later my wife said to cut in half and bring it inside Buster for Rahlee to use as a tunnel as he enjoys running into them.

Rahlee in the box
Buster’s Gate, San Roman, TX - Thursday, October 5, 2017
Morning 84 Degrees, Wind NNE at 6 to 8 Mph, Humidity 100%, cloudy.
Afternoon 8 Degrees, Wind  at  to  Mph, Humidity %, mostly sunny.

 We had a nice day, no rain with things drying out. My wife got up before two this afternoon and it is shopping day. I was on the road by two-thirty headed for Laredo
Dollar Tree, Walmart and HEB leaving HEB I stopped at Market Brisket for take home dinner. Not the best we have had by far, not McBees or Pleasanton HEB. We will try some place else next time.

Our flow back crew moved out today so things will slowdown until another job starts inside or they close the gate (release the gate guard).

New Gate

Buster’s Gate, San Roman, TX - Friday, October 6, 2017
Morning 75 Degrees, Wind W calm, Humidity 89%, mostly sunny.
Afternoon 8 Degrees, Wind  at  to  Mph, Humidity %, .

Slow morning and about twelve-thirty I got the phone call, gate closed. This is the hardest part, waking your wife during her night saying gate closed, go to work making ready to move Buster. I started outside and she started inside. Picking things up and packing away for the move all thethings around Buster and the outside lights. We loaded something’s into the trailer instead of packing away inside Buster. The coordinator arrived about two-thirty to move the generator trailer. With everything picked up and Buster ready slide outs in and off jacks move out in the road and connect Tan Jan to the tow bar and we are on the road.

Sunrise at our gate
We have another gate and start receiving vehicles tomorrow morning, so it is a thirty one mile trip to the new gate. Mostly west and a little south from the last gate. The last four and a half miles were dirt road that will be difficult in rainy weather.

After evaluating the location I backed Buster into position. I like Buster pointed to the road allowing us to look out the drivers and passengers side windows for vehicles coming to or leaving the gate. I block the large front windshield with insulation helping to keep Buster’s inside cool. With the “stuff” out of the pickup and the generator positioned and powered up, water connected we are into ladero for dinner out and some small shopping. 


 Thought For The Day – I don’t mean to brag, but this puzzle says “2-4 years” and I finished it in three months.