We are a couple who could be described as being somewhere in middle age. Danny is originally from this area; Shirley is from England. We own a property of just over 3 acres in a very small rural town in the Rocky Mountains of SW Colorado. We have a dog, Wally, who is a friendly, happy youngster with lots of energy. He loves attention! We take him out for an off-leash hike every day.
We have 11 ducks (for eggs). They happily splash in the pond and roam the pasture, occupying themselves with duck activities during the day. They are very entertaining: if the weather is nice, a pleasant time can be had sitting outside to read a book while watching their antics.
Every other year we also have two or three lambs on the pasture (not this year).
Although we don't have the amenities of a big town, the area is one of outstanding beauty with huge expanses of public land available for outdoor recreation. We sometimes take a picnic lunch and go off hiking and exploring with Wally for the day. There are also a number of marked cycling and walking trails nearby.
We are pretty relaxed down-to-earth people, broad-minded, and love the quiet and calm of living in a remote rural area. We don't smoke and we drink socially. If you smoke, that's OK, but you will have to do it outside.
We enjoy spending time and sharing our lives with people from around the world.
Shirley is known for her cooking and baking, and we will provide you with plenty of good, home-cooked food! We have a vegetable garden and we have recently planted a small fruit orchard. We eat meat (some of which is locally reared), but we are able to cater for vegetarian diets for short stays of about a week (any longer, and there might be meal repetition!)
We prefer workaway stints of 1 to 3 weeks, as we have found that we like to concentrate our energy into getting a number of tasks accomplished, and then we like to take a break.
You will need to have your own transport, as the nearest towns of any size (both of which have public transport terminals and car rental companies) are about 100 miles away. Most of our local shops and facilities are within walking distance, but there is no public transport available here for going further afield, and no car rental.
We are happy to host single people or couples, but we don't have the accommodation for children.
Due to having our own pet, we are not able to accommodate yours if they are travelling with you.
DIY and building projects
Help around the house
Workawayers will experience what it's like to live in a small rural town at a considerable distance from any major stores (the closest town of any size is a drive of nearly 100 miles / 160 km); how our community differs from and how we manage without the conveniences and the organisation of urban areas; and learn about the wider area in which we live (the open spaces of public land, wildlife, etc) as, weather permitting, we go out for hikes in the locality.
On the practical side, there are various skills that can be learned or improved on, depending on the time of year and the projects undertaken. Workawayers can learn about vegetable gardening without pesticides or herbicides; irrigation; how to preserve excess produce for later use, including organising and rotating pantry/freezer stocks; how to build a fence; basic woodwork; animal care (ducks and/or sheep); housepainting; cooking and baking.
1. Help needed in 2021:
- to maintain the garden through the season (including harvesting and preserving the produce later in the year).
- Fencing: to remove and then re-site the fence around the dog yard; to help repair existing fences, if needed, around the property.
- Ducks: to assist generally with our small flock.
- construct a new sheephouse;
- construct an addition and/or make improvements to the duckhouse;
- build a shed for a small camper;
- construct a compost bin;
- finish work to a newly constructed cupboard;
- dog walking;
- house cleaning and organising;
- keep the ditch in the pasture cleared;
- grass mowing;
- some interior painting;
- general house, pasture, and yard maintenance.
You can learn more about:
- how to grow vegetables without pesticides or insecticides;
- how to preserve produce;
- how to build fence, including the use of fencing tools and techniques;
- all about ducks!;
- basic carpentry and interior painting skills;
- cooking and baking.
We are not necessarily looking for someone with particular skills - although we would welcome that! - but a willingness to assist with a variety of tasks is essential, as is an ability to do things from time to time without close supervision. Hours will vary from day to day, depending on what's being done.
Please be aware that at this altitude the sun can be intense and, as most of the help we need is outdoors during the warmer months, you will need sunscreen and a hat with good protection (we can provide both if needed).
You will have your own private room (our guest room) which has a double bed, and almost exclusive use of the separate shower room. Our house is comfortable, with cooling in the summer and heating in the winter.
You will need to have your own transport: the nearest towns of any size are both about 100 miles away; local shops and facilities are within walking distance, but there is no public transport for going further afield, and no car rental.
We always include Workawayers on any hikes we take, and trips to places of interest in the area.
We are 1.5 - 2 hours drive from Telluride ski resort and from Moab (Utah) which is the center for outdoor recreation.
The Visitors Center (5 miles away) provides an excellent service for anyone interested in finding out more about the local area.
Three National Parks are each within 2.5 hours drive: Canyonlands, Arches and Mesa Verde.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We have good wifi, although it is best when there is only one user. We have hosted a digital nomad, and were able to accommodate her online schedule with no problems. We don't work from home, so our online needs are flexible.
We have plenty of space! There is an electrical supply, fresh water from a standpipe, and access to the sewer for waste water.
Maximum 25 hours a week.
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