A bear chewed up my Internet

A Secom tech works on the electronics as Laredo looks on after packing new marine batteries up the hill.

You’ve heard the old “My dog chewed up my homework” excuse. How about a bear chewed up my Internet?

That’s exactly what I had to tell one of my employers during a deadline crunch on Monday.

We get Internet service from an outfit called Secom through a radio-relay system. The tower is located on a high ridge about a mile from here. I packed in a lot of the original equipment for this tower on burros a few years ago.

The station is powered by solar panels. The batteries and electronics for this system are housed in large ice chests.

Yogi’s teeth marks on one corner of cooler.

Apparently before the big storm last Wednesday a bear bit two corners of one of these ice chests. Clearly this bear had seen an ice chest somewhere before, but must have sensed the contents were more like a Snap Circuits Set than a ham-and-cheese sandwich.

Still, the punctures were enough to allow water inside the coolers, shorting out the solar system. Within a few days the batteries were drained and several households including mine were suddenly without Internet service.

The Secom tech guys called for help getting new batteries up there, and so instead of sitting in front of my desk Monday, I rounded up Laredo and we packed a couple 50-pound marine batteries up to the tower and the old ones back down.

While I enjoyed the blue-sky afternoon outside, I paid for it after the service was restored by staying up late that night to finish my work on time.

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