In February ‘16 Gregory bought an acre and a half of land in southwest Colorado. This land was surveyed back in the mid ‘70s, platted out for a subdivision and then left to dwell. A thirty minute drive from town, no amenities were included in the purchase. At the time of closing there were no guarantees for the possibility of a well or getting electricity to the property. No covenants, HOAs, building restrictions or long term neighbors.
It was early March of the same year when we first visited the property together. At that time we were traveling and living in the back of the Silverado utility truck, in our homemade sleeper box. The first few nights the temperature dropped between 5-12 degrees. We had a buddy heater in the back of the truck which helped us survive the brittle cold nights, but everything else was work to keep warm.
The mountain was incredibly quiet and it was the most serene feeling imaginable. The two of us finally at rest in a place that we would soon call home. Every day for the first month I was up and out of the truck early, firing up the chainsaw, clearing dead brush and fallen trees. In eighteen months (six months working on it) we built our home and got the house bus in its’ final resting place.
We live off the grid, using deep cycle marine batteries for lighting, water pumping, refrigeration, baking, entertainment and building. Since there is no well on the property we truck our water up the mountain and gravity feed it into our cistern. A 250 gallon reserve can keep us comfortable for all but a month. Propane is our primary source of heat and functions our water heater, stove, refrigerator, and furnace.
Over the next few pages I will describe in as much detail how we built our cabin and our future plans for expanding. Living off the grid is a beautiful approach to sustainability and helps us contribute to revitalizing the environment, minimizing our carbon footprint and impact.