We are a couple in our late 50s: Danny is originally from this area and works in general maintenance at a de-salination plant. Shirley is from England and works two days a week at a local store. We own a property of just over 3 acres in a very small rural town in the Rocky Mountains of SW Colorado. Until this year, we had a flock of sheep stay on our pasture for the warmer months, but the sheep owner will shortly be moving to another state. We hope to have sheep again in the future but, in the meantime, we have started a new livestock adventure - keeping ducks!
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 are pretty relaxed down-to-earth people, broad-minded, love the quiet of living in a 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 have one dog (Wally) who is a friendly, happy youngster. Due to having our own pet, we are not able to accommodate yours if they are travelling with you.
Help in 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 2019:
- to finish constructing a new shed/studio. We have made a good start on the shed/studio, and we would love to have an extra pair of hands (or two) to install an interior wall, windows, finish the gable ends, etc.
- Gardening: April, to help prepare the greenhouse and vegetable garden for the growing season, including starting seedlings. End of May/beginning June, to plant out seedlings and to establish a small flower/herb garden. June to Oct, to maintain the garden through the season (including harvesting and preserving the produce later in the year).
- Fencing: to help put up a new fence around the young orchard to protect the trees from being eaten by deer; to remove and then re-site the fence around the dog yard; to help repair existing fences.
- Ducks: to assist generally with our small flock.
2. Other tasks where we would appreciate help during the year (and in no particular order) are:
to construct a new sheephouse; finish work to a newly constructed cupboard; laying a stone patio and bench seat in the garden; general organising and moving stuff; dog walking; housecleaning; tree trimming; clearing the yard; clearing the ditch in the pasture; grass mowing; hay-making; renovating a fireplace; restoring a bed frame; some interior painting; general house, pasture, and yard maintenance.
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
Maximum 25 hours a week.