The Kaufmann farm and Hilltop House Family Inn

Walter and Monika Kaufmann run a mid sized farm at the Rock Hill. Walter is also the town's master electrician and divides his time between wiring and tending the farm where they raise sheep, chickens, other assorted livestock and a few riding horses. Monika makes the prettiest (and best tasting) wedding cakes for friends and neighbors. Folks come from miles around to purchase her german baked products.

Hill, field and barn from tracks
Barn with visiting crows
Above we see Rock Hill above the shed. The cow and pig are just waking up, but up on the hill a pair of intrepid hikers is already making their way up the trail. Unbeknownst to them, two families of whitetails eating their breakfasts above are watching them warily.
A view of the barn, facing north. The black dot on the roof is an itinerant crow. His companion is on the ground below. In the near future there will be a fenced in chicken pen to the right. For now the pigeons on the roof are the only other inhabitants.

Barn & Stable
Hill from road
Guests at the inn can see this view from the back porch. Walter is off to an early start. He really likes the tractor that he personally restored and prefers it to the newer model. The horse stable is at the left and the reverse loop to Coxing Stone Works is barely  visible in the background.
Morning walkers near the east road junction are treated to this view. They wave to the hikers on the trail and bring some goodies to the cow and pig in the coral. It looks like it's going to be another perfect day on the mountain.              

View from tall ladder
Birds' eye view
Above is the view from the roof of the family homestead. The older kids sometimes climb up here to ostensibly check the condition of the chimney. They really just like to spy on the hikers and other wildlife.
Although the view from the roof is great, it can't compare to that of the local red tailed hawk who nests near the new highway bridge far above to the south east. She doesn't seem to mind the construction crews very much and sometimes performs aerobatics for their amusement. She also knows better than to snack on the farm's chickens. Her job is to keep the rodent population manageable.
Coxing bridge collapsed this past winter and has been cleared away. Lumber fot the new one is scheduled to arrive on the next train.

Overlooking the valley and village below is the Hilltop House family inn (a precursor to today's bed & breakfast). The inn is run by the Kaufmanns' youngest daughter and son-in-law. The inn is near the family stables and horse back riding and hiking are favorite pastimes of the clientele. Sue is a riding instructor and afficianado of the old mountain hotels that used to dot the landscape. 

From the inn,  rail fans get a close up view of the Atkarton freight crawling up the mountain every morning bringing supplies to the quarries, mill and lumbering operation. Later in the day, it makes the much easier return trip carrying cut stone and lumber products to facilities in the valley below. There is also a set of weekend passenger trips for sightseers and those who perfer to not drive.

Farmer Waving
At or after lunch time, guests at the inn can check out the sunflower patches around the farm. Sunflowers should not be surprising - this is Saint Remy after all.
Walter is a closet rail fan and has come to the center field to watch the afternoon freight make its way back down the long two percent grade to town.

Farm Pond half done  
Farm Pond nearly finished  
The farm pond as seen from the tracks (about half finished). The next photo was taken a week later.
One of the Kaufmann children is taking some time out for fishing from his raft, and some of the sheep are conducting surveilance from the cover of the tall grasses.
Shepherd and sheep
Shepherd near pond
Grandpa and his faithful dog Waldi, bring part of the flock back from the far corner of the field where they wandered in search of delicacies.
Waldi, who loves herding sheep, is watching the one who is observing the fishing. The rest of the flock is spending the day nearer the barn where the new spring grass is tastier.
More sheep
  more sheep
The farm pond viewed from the caboose of a passing freight.
Bobby T. Lambchop, the smart sheep, takes a drink of cool mountain water. In the background is the newly reconstructed wooden kingpost bridge on the road to Coxing Stone Works. This style of bridge was quite common in the northeast.
Coxing road from the new bridge
View from the road crossing to Hilltop House
The farm brook as seen from high above on the new bridge construction site.
View (using binoculars) of the farm pond from the tower of Hilltop House.
Closeup view of pond and cattails
Hikers on deer hill
Twilight on the mountain
The sun is low and to the west
Walter waving goodbye
Walter waves to the crew of the late afternoon freight as the sun begins to dip toward the horizon.
Lengthening Shadows

Notes: the stone walls have been started. We still need to build the inn, and chicken yard.  Then we can add chickens, trees and visitors. You might even see a few riding horses. There is a long way to go but we're off to a pretty good start. Thanks for stopping by.

Update June 2007

Most of the stone walls are in place. We also have chickens and maple trees.

New Windows for the farmhouse
The boys are installing the new windows in the farmhouse.
They have also planted a forsythia bush.
Evening begins to fall as the last window awaits installation.

Overview of the High Bridge

Overview of the high bridge showing placement in the room
The yellowish cast comes from the new camera.
A view of the barns from the west near Hilltop House (2011)
High bridge left
High bridge right
View of the high bridge through the farm
View of the high bridge from the tractor

2009 - A few more perspectives

The "South Fourty"
Guests coming to Kaufmanns' Hilltop House

Copyright © 2006 - 2012 Karl Wick
Begun 30 May 2006