I installed the ground rod to the project house this weekend.
It's a half inch ground rod, eight feet long. Driven straight down into the ground. No, I didn't use a hammer. If you use a hammer, you'll swell the end of that soft copper ground rod and you'll have to cut or file it to get the connector to fit.
My daddy was a telephone man, and he installed a lot of ground rods. An old trick is to dig a small hole in the dirt and fill it with water. The hole doesn't have to be big, about the size of a cereal bowl, maybe four inches deep. Fill that hole with water and put the pointed end of the ground rod into the hole. Jab it into the bottom, then lift it and jab it again. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. The water flows down into the hole, making mud. Keep jabbing. You'll notice the ground rod sinking into the ground. Keep jabbing, gently, up and down. Refill the hole with water as needed.
Occasionally, pull the rod completely out of the hole, allowing the hole to fill with water. Keep jabbing the rod down in the hole. Repeatedly. Kneel down when necessary. In about a half hour, you'll be below kneeling level.
It took me and my son about a half hour to drive that ground rod into the ground. The grandkids helped, holding the hose and occasionally filling their dad's shoe with water.
Today while I was a Lowe's, I bought a ground rod connector and eight feet of 6 gage ground wire. The breaker box is installed and I have a good ground to that box. Tomorrow I start drilling holes and pulling wire.