Help renovate cabin and garden in Rocky Mountains, USA - must love cats


United States

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  • Description


    Our house is over 100 years old and situated in a national historic district in Manitou Springs, Colorado. It's a house with good bones on a unique lot and could benefit from some renovation. This summer we are primarily looking for help re-shingling our roof but there are also a number of ongoing projects for interested helpers. We will accept those without experience who are willing to learn new skills as well as experienced homeowners, carpenters, plumbers, electricians, etc.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help with Eco Projects
    Help around the house
    Animal Care

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Manitou is a small mountain town with lots to see including art galleries, a vintage arcade, and a haunted mansion. There is a weekly farmers market and drum circle during summer months, holiday parades in the winter, and always lot's of outdoor activities including hiking, camping, climbing, mountain biking, backpacking, and marathon training. Athletes come from all over the world to train on Barr Trail and the Manitou Incline and most run by our house on the way to the trailheads from the parking areas near Manitou Avenue.

    We live on the border of Pike National Forest in the Rocky Mountains with back-yard access to trails which are stunningly beautiful and challenging. We are happy to lead hikes of various lengths (for trips over 6 miles we ask for a fee); workawayers can enjoy a prepared lunch on the trail and learn basics of back-country backpacking.

    We are interested in learning new crafts and being exposed to new activities. In exchange, hobbies we can share include knitting, embroidery, textile arts, wood burning, drawing/painting, yoga, music/percussion.

    If you would like to try a new or extravagant dish we can teach it or prepare it for you for a small fee. We are all over the spectrum when it comes to cooking and enjoy experimenting with tough recipes from (e.g.) French, Spanish, Chinese, Mediterranean, Japanese, Indian, Mexican, and Italian cuisines.

    Examples of dishes we can teach or prepare for a fee ($5-$25) :
    Baked breads (boule, zatar bread, pita, baguette)
    Fish: pan seared fillets, lobster tail with bisque, bone/head broths and soups
    Chinese Bbq spare-ribs and red cooked meats
    Homemade Pizza (Neapolitan style, thin crust)
    Steak au Poivre
    Chinese dumplings with homemade dough
    Mediterranean: Fallafel/ shwarma with homemade pita, hummus & tzaziki
    Oven-roasted whole chicken au jus
    Hand-pulled pasta dishes including lasagna and ravioli
    Port au Feu
    Tonkotsu Ramen with marinated egg and chashu pork (or other bone broths with hand-pulled noodles)

  • Help


    Everyone helps with dishes!

    If you would like to help with the roof project, there's lots to do depending on your experience. If you have related experience or personal health insurance (or are willing to sign an injury waiver) you can help me on the roof removing old shingles and laying the new ones. Otherwise, the bulk of the labor is actually on the ground: unloading new shingles from the truck, disposing of old shingles, measuring/ cutting end pieces and metal flashing, etc.)

    Other projects:
    -General cleaning, organizing, and daily tasks.
    -Cat care: litter boxes, food and water.
    -recycling projects
    -Re-point brick chimney and sweep flue
    -Split firewood
    -Landscaping: digging, moving dirt and rocks, sweeping/raking,
    -Interior and/or exterior painting
    -Refurbish old wooden garage doors
    -Weather proofing (sealing garage leaks, adding weather strips to doors)
    -Car repair (2006 Saab not running could be something easy like vacuum leak or clogged fuel injectors, 2005 Camry needs new head gasket, oil changes and tune ups).

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent

  • Accommodation


    Private room: double mattress in the upstairs loft, which is otherwise used as an office. There is no heat in this room but it will be comfortable for some even in winter with portable space heaters and blankets which we provide. Careful on the narrow stairs leading to the loft!

    Tents and van: When the private room is occupied during summer months we can also provide tents (one 6-person and one 3-person tent) for camping in the yard or on the deck and a camper van which is great for a couple.

    Transportation to and from Colorado Springs Airport or bus station upon arrival/departure.

    *️️️️️️️️️Parking on our street is heavily regulated. We can provide a parking pass for one vehicle at a time. There is free street parking a mile into town for additional vehicles. To get back, just hop on a free shuttle which will take you to a stop 300m from our door.

    We will provide healthy and delicious meals typical of our daily routine (lots of fruits and veggies, some type of grain and some protein which is usually not meat but we are not strict vegetarians yet). We can easily accommodate any dietary restrictions. We can provide transportation to the grocery store if you need sundries and extra snacks.
    For a fee you can learn to cook or try a specific dish.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    -Denver is about an hour away, Red Rocks Ampitheater is two hours away
    -Ski resorts including Breckenridge, Aspen, Vail, and many more are within a few hours.

    *️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️Trailheads accessible from back-yard:
    Ring the Peak trail - 63 mi (101 km) trek around Pike's Peak
    Barr trail - 23 mi, 7,500 ft ascent (37km, 2,300 m) to the summit of Pikes Peak at an elevation of 14,115 ft (4.3km).
    Incline - World famous 2,700 step stairway gaining 2,000 ft in only one mile (45-68% grade)

    If you are planning hikes over 6 miles or camping in the wilderness, you may be on your own and we'll need some assurance you have experience hiking long distances at high elevations.

    We can lead trips over 6 miles and/or rent equipment out for a fee upon request.

    *️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️Other Attractions in and around Manitou Springs:
    -Garden of the Gods
    -Dozens of short or long trails, smaller peaks, and open spaces worth visiting.
    -Cog railway which takes you to Pike's peak summit. Tickets must be reserved in advance (currently closed for construction -April, 2019).
    -If you have a reliable car and experience driving on steep grades, there is a road you can take to the summit of Pikes Peak for a toll which can be as much as $50 depending on the month.
    -art co-ops, cafes, shops, restaurants, pubs, a mountain outfitter, and an escape room within walking distance.
    -Mineral springs naturally carbonated drinking fountains dispersed throughout town, two on our road.
    -Cave of the winds
    -manitou cliff dwellings

    No smoking inside the house.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    I have great WiFi and an empty desk with a nice view.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Host ref number: 912542163351