The work was so extensive that when a condition assessment was conducted the following year (1985), the
chalet was considered to be in excellent condition for its age and building type. Recommendations from
the repair make no reference to any needed repairs, listing only cyclic maintenance and inspection.
A condition assessment thirteen years later in 1998 found the structure to continue to be in excellent
condition with only some shallow surface rot on the lower courses of logs and many areas of missing
chinking between the wall logs. Recommendation was to chink the logs with fiberglas insulation to help
control rodent problems in the building.
The winter of 1998/99 was very harsh. A condition report in the summer of 1999 noted that shakes were
missing from the roof, leaks had developed, and snow sliding off the roof had torn off the roofs over the
entry door and the bulletin board. Bricks were spalling off the chimney. Many of the logs in the lower
wall courses were deteriorating, especially on the north wall with the exception of those replaced in 1984.
Windows needed repair and repainting. While it appears the building had reached another period of repairs
though there is little documentation on actual work that addressed these issues.
The last condition assessment of the structure occurred in 2004. It was conducted by the National Park
Service Historic Preservation Training Center. The assessment addresses many of the concerns from the
1999 report. Deterioration was observed in the logs of the north wall with a recommendation for replacing
nine logs. Site re-grading was recommended at the base of the structure below the eave lines of the roof
to try and direct moisture away from the building. Maintenance painting of all windows and shutters needed
to occur and replacement of the roof over the door recommended, but redesigning it to be a shed roof in lieu
of the former gable canopy. The top of the chimney was noted as needing some brick replacement, though
the extent and quantity was not discussed. The most extensive recommendation was for the complete
replacement of the shake
roof. It was felt that as of 2004 the roof had only a few more years of service left.
Figure No. 2: Enchanted Valley Chalet, April 2004.
The issue of site drainage is always critical around structures, but especially so for log buildings.
It is good maintenance practice to insure the exterior of a structure has a positive grade slope away
from the building. On level sites, this is best accomplished with grade swales constructed as a collection
basin and then gently sloped for drainage. Often the concept of foundation drains is discussed in regards
to site drainage, and in instances of a perfectly level site and the reluctance for
site alteration or restraints, they can be useful. The performance of foundation drains is affected by
soil type, frost depth, organic decomposition and method of installation. In remote locations, grade swales
are easier to maintain and construct that foundation drains.
Concrete foundations like under the chalet will always transport a degree of moisture. Without a damp
proof barrier on top of the foundation, ground moisture can and will migrate to the underside of the sill
log. As future work is conducted to replace logs in the wall, consideration should be given to installation
of a damp proof barrier to reduce at least one source of moisture into the sill log.
Grade swales should be maintained around the chalet for moisture control and when replacing sill log a
damp proof course should be insert to reduce foundation moisture migration.
A persistent issue with log structures in heavy snow country is the deep accumulation of the material along
eave walls as the roof sheds snow. During a long, slow spring melt, the moisture from the snow saturates
those courses covered under the snow. As this moisture evaporates, the cold temperature of the snow creates
a microclimate of high humidity next to the building, encouraging fungal growth.
Removing the snow in a remote location is impractical. An application of log preservative has been applied
to the logs of the chalet at least once in 1984. The challenge with topical applications of preservative
is their length of service and environmental effects.
The most promising and a widely used material currently in the wood preservation industry is borate.
Borate is effective for fungal and insect control. Both topical and solid rod inserts are available.
In conditions like at the chalet, the use of borate rods inserted into the lower courses of
logs would aid in reduction of the degree of fungal activity. A small hole is drilled in the log, a borate
rod inserted, and the hole plugged with a wood dowel. The borate rod remains inert until in contact with
moisture. Then some of the material dissolves to migrate through the wood and prevent fungal activity.
When the moisture in the log is reduced through drying, the rod will go back to an inert status. One of
the problems with borate is its effectiveness as an herbicide. The borate material can leach from the logs
under high moisture content and if there are sensitive plantings around a building they sometimes can be
affected. The use of any borate preservation treatment should be reviewed by the Integrated Pest Management
officer at the Park for approval.
Borate preservative of course will not repair deteriorated logs, and in the instance of severe rot, the
log must be replaced. Depending on the depth of a log, some logs can continue to be utilized with a borate
treatment when there is only minor surface deterioration.
Some instances of powder post beetle activity have been recorded on the chalet walls. If active, a borate
treatment can again be used.
In all instances, preservative should be utilized in a managed and controlled manner for specific problems.
Indiscriminate use is never justified.
Deteriorated sill and lower course logs on the chalet should be replaced. During the process a borate
preservative treatment can be incorporated. For those logs still serviceable, in place treatment can be