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Updated Aug 2022:
We currently have dwellings available and are accepting Bring-Your-Own Dwelling volunteers. All our accommodations are first come first serve. More information about our accommodations is below.
I require a video chat interview from everyone before accepting someone to stay. This makes sure the vibe is right for the community, expectations are set, and gives you the opportunity to ask questions and learn about what's going on at that very moment. Due to my current crazy schedule and our increased demand, I am only doing interviews Tuesdays and Thursdays between 8 am - 10 am (Arizona Time). They typically take about 15 minutes and are done through Google Meet.
Our homestead is a tiny house, eco-friendly, educational community near the amazing small town of Bisbee Arizona.
After building my first tiny home in 2015, traveling the country in a Honda Element, building a second tiny home in 2017... and hiking halfway across the country on the Pacific Crest Trail in 2019... I finally settled down and purchased land to build a community of like-minded individuals who want to live simply, sustainably, and happily out in the desert.
We are 2 ½ years into our homesteading journey and finally at a point where we are comfortable and can work on more fun projects. We purchased 100% raw, undeveloped land in Mid-January of 2020 and have been working to build it into a beautiful community. Currently, we are able to house 6 people, but the end goal is to have a self-sustaining community of 5-8 full-time dwellers and a regular flow of travelers coming through. We are also big fans of Van lifers, Tiny Housers, and BYOD (Bring your own dwelling) travelers.
I (Richard) own and run the community. I'm an earth-friendly, yogi, liberal, crunchy hippie, backpacker, and nature type and am looking for more people who fit with our ideals.
The community is a completely non-profit community and we are not building properties to sell or rent. Rather we are looking for people to help build up the community space so we can host more travelers and like-minded individuals.
We are Vegetarian and do ask that community members keep at least a vegetarian diet while on the land. This is not just because of our ideals, but it also helps significantly with keeping away pests, dealing with black water, and dealing with waste since all trash has to be either burned (cardboard/paper) or packed out.
We LOVE board/card games, campfires, good conversations, learning things, plants, and sharing meals and drinks with other people. The main goal of this community is to have people around that we can both learn from and teach and enjoy each other's company.
We are a nudist/naturalist/clothing optional friendly community. There is no requirement to participate, but please know that others may and be respectful of everyone.
Help with Eco Projects
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
If you are interested in learning about going off-grid, construction, permaculture, growing food, hydroponics, harvesting water, producing energy, desert plants, animals, this is a great place to be.
While I have a fair amount of knowledge in construction and solar, we are learning as we go with all of this... we are looking for people to bring their knowledge, passions, expertise, and willingness to learn to the community. If there are projects you are passionate about and want to try, we are certainly open to hearing them and if it makes sense for the community to try it out! If you are new and want to learn we are happy to teach. Just be open and willing to learn.
This land is our playground.
Where we are, it is rare to hear the noise of a car... people... or anything but the birds, locus, and other creatures around us (though the cows can be loud). This is a great place for someone who is looking for time to themselves and a peaceful place to work on themselves, learn a new skill, read a book, and just escape from the world for a while. You will for sure connect back with nature out here... we live outside. And if you've never seen a full moon in the desert, you're in for a treat.
You are surrounded by mountains and we are happy to teach about all thing things the land provides. While I am new to it all, it has become a personal obsession to learn about how native people thrived on these lands hundreds of years ago.
Depending on when you come, you'll have a totally new experience of the desert. December - March is perfect sunny days and cold nights... April - May is perfect days and nights.... June and July are hot, but the nights cool off... August - November is the rainy season. The whole landscape and feeling out here changes completely every couple of months, which is really fascinating to witness.
For those interested in building a tiny house on wheels or a van conversion... My success in the tiny house world came largely due to the kindness of strangers. I would love the opportunity to pay that kindness back. If you are looking for a spot to build and the tools to build with, I would be happy to share what I have to the right person. Let's talk for more details.
We have a ton of projects going on out here all the time. Skilled help is great, but not required. Much of the tasks we have to do out here are physically demanding. It's a great place to get fit!
We are open to project ideas and will let you pursue projects/experiments that interest you if they fit within the end goal and budget of the community. We're happy to teach. Artists are also very welcome and if your artwork fits our vibe, look and feel, we would love murals/sculptures created.
Current Major Projects:
• Workshop building - Our exterior is mostly done, we are moving onto the interior. This is carpentry, organization, some earthworks/plaster, and general construction.
• Hyper Adobe Test House - Putting on roof/windows/and exterior work
• Main House Basement Build - Hyperadobe earthbag work.
• Earthen Plaster on multiple structures
Side Projects and Interests:
There are a few personal fitness/happiness goals I am trying to achieve this year and it doesn't take much to twist my arm to go have fun instead of work (within reason). If you are into climbing or backpacking, that is a huge plus!
• The Dragoon Mountains are less than an hour away from the property and have been told by multiple people that it is a world-class climbing location. I am learning and super interested in going out with people who can lead climb and teach as I build up my skill set. I have a full set of gear and ropes to use, you would just need a harness and shoes.
• I am also working on section hiking the AZT this year as time allows. I'm currently 200 of the 800 miles in. If you're into backpacking and have a vehicle, I'm always down for 4-5 day trips and with two vehicles it makes life soo much easier to achieve that goal. I have loaner gear outside of a sleeping bag, typically try and do 50-100 miles in a stretch.
We do ask for the standard 25 hours/week of help and we will do our best to give you projects that fall into your talents and interests. Our typical schedule is 2 - ~4 hour days and 2 - ~8 hour full day build per week with 3 days off. This is subject to change based on what needs to be done, weather, things like that. But each week will be around 25 hours.
The biggest things that we want in our guests are for them to be good community members. For guests to make sure I do not feel mooched off of and that it is an equal exchange, and to make us feel like we are having to babysit you. We want people who are resilient and can help independently without having to be managed daily.
We currently have 4 dwellings for workawayers on the property. A 32 ft RV split into two units and a 54 sq ft tiny house on wheels, and our Bus which doubles as our community space and is becoming the overflow "bunk house" for the winter.
All dwellings require water to be hauled from the main tank for the time being. They all have electricity. The RV is equipped with a kitchen and a small fridge, the tiny house has an outdoor community kitchen and cooler.
We also use a composting toilet system for the community. It is simple and works well and a community shower. We have laundry on-site, but highly encourage people to conserve water when possible and only do full loads when absolutely needed since water is very expensive here.
We provide food for our workawayers. We have community boxes full of staples (rice, beans, spices, etc.) and get fresh produce boxes once a week. We will supplement from the food boxes on occasion. Food is simple but sustainable.
Foraging around the property is always welcome and encouraged. We have a ton of edible plants that are native to the area and I am happy to show you what you can and can not eat. We even have a book going through all the edible plants of our area and how to prepare them.
Our community is between Bisbee, Tombstone, and Sierra Vista Arizona.
Bisbee (20 minutes drive south): Bisbee is an amazingly small, artsy community tucked away in the mountains. It has a handful of great dive bars, a brewery, regular live music, cute shops, and an all-around great vibe.
Sierra Vista (30 minute drive west): Sierra vista is where we get all of our supplies. They have big grocery stores, home depot/lowes, Walmart, a good library, UPS, co-op, chain restaurants... etc. There is also a large hospital 20 minutes away.
Tucson (1:30 hr drive north): Tucson is close enough to be accessible. They are a large metropolitan city with an international airport. There is free camping near town and makes a great spot for a weekend getaway.
Hiking/Biking/Outdoors: Our property touches BLM land which is accessible for cross-country hiking literally from your doorstep. The Arizona trail southern terminus is a 45-minute drive away. There are TONS of mountains and hiking trails very close to us.
Other Cities: We are within a one day drive of Colorado, Southern Utah, San Diego, New Mexico, and only 45 minutes from the Mexican border. The Grand Canyon is about 6:30hrs away, Phoenix about 3hrs.
Know before you apply:
We do live in the desert and off the grid. We are at 4,500 ft elevations, so while mid-day in the summer is hot, the days cool off quickly. We do have a ton of wildlife including rattlesnakes, spiders, scorpions, bobcats, coyotes, bees, wasps, and javelina. We are in no way responsible for any injuries that may happen out here and we do have a waiver for all new members.
The purpose of this community is to be a happy, healthy, and sustainable place for everyone involved. If you don't fit the community vibe, you will be asked to leave.
We are 2 miles off of the paved road. Our road is accessible by 2 wheeled drive vehicles, but it can get muddy and slick during rains. There is no public transit out here, you will need a car to get around.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We use Starlink Internet service and have a strong cell signal with the major providers. Camp does not have internet, but you're welcome to bring a hotspot. Our bus is set up with a small community office space with internnet. This is a great place to get away from distraction and live inexpensively.
We have plenty of room for RVs/Vans/Etc. We don't have hookups though. Water can be hauled from the tanks a short walk away. For power, you would need solar (no generators please). If you are interested in investing in a solar system, I can give some advice on setting up your own system.
Pets that are people and animal friendly are welcome. Just be aware that we are in the desert, so keep an eye on them and I wouldn't let them roam free. We have snakes, mountain lions, javelina, scorpions, and all other sorts of desert creatures. All pets must be friendly with other dogs and people.
More than two
25 hours / week
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