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Off grid living in 2021

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posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:23 PM
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Many folks have different ideas as to what it means to be off grid. It doesn’t necessarily mean off the radar, or Amish. It does mean that you aren’t connected to the power grid. In this way someone could live in an urban environment and still be off grid. Yet when most of us think of off grid living we assume modest buildings, and self sufficiency. Though self sufficiency to some degree or another does typically become a by product of off grid living, it’s not a requirement. Homesteading, which typically happens off-grid isn’t what all off grid living is like.

I live off grid in a way that is as unique as other folks who do. This post is to describe how my family lives.

Electricity - There isn’t any power lines in this canyon, and probably won’t ever be. My cabin was built in 1984. Although there was, and still is, no electric utilities in this canyon, the house was built with outlets installed. Solar wasn’t a big thing at the time, and so our cabin is plumbed with propane lamps on the walls in the same way you’d have a light fixture. It’s kinda neat.

In 2013 this house was fitted with a few solar panels and 8 lead acid deep cycle 6V 420ah batteries. These are split up into two series of 4 each, giving us a 24V system. The panels are all we need in the summer, however the winters are dark and so we have a propane generator which we start to use in the fall and stop using in the spring. I’m still adding panels to extend the free electric through the year.

All of my lights are LED (warm), my fridge is a full size fridge but runs on propane alone. We don’t have a TV. My water heater is also propane and we have a propane fireplace for heat in the winter. We had a wood stove at our last place but believe me, propane makes it a lot easier... set it and forget it. This part tends to bother other folks who live off grid... even my neighbors in the canyon... but hey... it’s worked for several winters and I have no complaints. Though when we build on, we will most likely install a wood stove as a backup option.

Property and water - This is probably the most unique thing about our off grid lifestyle when compared to others. We live in an off-grid mountain community. There are about 40 lots with 3/4 built out. However, most all of these are vacation homes. There are very few people who live here full time. Only 6 houses have full time residents. Our community is surrounded by US Forest land, and congress has passed a law that this specific area will never be developed. That creates a beautiful place to live. Our canyon is surrounded by mountains and we are at 8500 feet, complete with mountain lions, coyotes, ring tail cats, foxes, wild horses, and burros... but no bears.

Because our laws state you must have 2 acres to build a well... our well is shared by the community. We have two 10k gallon tanks that feed a distribution system. I’m in charge of keeping the tanks filled and a couple times a week I go to the pumphouse, turn on the generator and pump a few thousand gallons out of the mountain aquifer. We get about 480 gallons pumped each hour the generator is running. We each also have our own septic systems to handle our waste.

Food - we live about an hour from the nearest grocery store and we drive in once a week to get basic supplies. However we also have two deep freezers and a well stocked pantry. We can maintain about 6 months of food. We are pescatarian and mostly vegetarian. I’ll be adding more freezer storage when I get the new shed built this year.

Internet- I make my living owning an internet business, so having internet is important. However there are no cell towers anywhere near us. Because of this all communications are satellite based. Wifi calling is how I do business and use HughesNet as our internet provider. To be honest, it’s ok... but nothing like it could be:... I’m waiting for skylink.

Below are some photos of the area around my cabin. I’m happy to answer any general questions you may have, and I encourage you to share your off-grid experiences.


[links removed per OP request]
edit on Wed Jan 20 2021 by DontTreadOnMe because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:32 PM
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a reply to: HunkaHunka


Wow, beautiful views, you’re lucky!



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:37 PM
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Well done to you and the work you have put in to continuing to live a modern lifestyle in such a beautiful setting.

Anything is possible if we put our minds to it, and treat problems/issues as opportunities.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:41 PM
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originally posted by: HunkaHunka
I’m happy to answer any general questions you may have, and I encourage you to share your off-grid experiences.


Have you ever been attacked by a Sasquatch that's angry that there's no Starbucks nearby?



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:42 PM
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Everyday I realize how fortunate I am. Nothing taken for granted here.


originally posted by: KTemplar
a reply to: HunkaHunka


Wow, beautiful views, you’re lucky!




posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:47 PM
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originally posted by: AugustusMasonicus

originally posted by: HunkaHunka
I’m happy to answer any general questions you may have, and I encourage you to share your off-grid experiences.


Have you ever been attacked by a Sasquatch that's angry that there's no Starbucks nearby?


haha... no sasquatch's out here either



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:48 PM
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originally posted by: HunkaHunka
haha... no sasquatch's out here either


Damn.

Either way, pretty neat. What do you have for a range/oven set up? Is it also propane and if it is how do you find it to perform?



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:51 PM
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What's to say? You are lucky as F.

Make it your own.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:52 PM
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a reply to: AugustusMasonicus

I didn't realize this when we moved here, but most natural gas stoves can be converted to propane stoves by changing the diameters of some of the fittings. So we have a common propane stove/oven with 5 burners. We use it a LOT. My lady enjoys baking all kinds of stuff, and it works well by the taste of it.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:55 PM
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What state is this?

Did you build this yourself, or buy it already built?

How long have you lived there?


edit on 1/19/2021 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:57 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

So I'm not planning on making identifiable information public. Suffice it to say that this is in the Mountain West.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:57 PM
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originally posted by: HunkaHunka
a reply to: AugustusMasonicus

I didn't realize this when we moved here, but most natural gas stoves can be converted to propane stoves by changing the diameters of some of the fittings. So we have a common propane stove/oven with 5 burners. We use it a LOT. My lady enjoys baking all kinds of stuff, and it works well by the taste of it.


Yep. The only difference is inlet diameter because of pressure. Propane is higher.
Don't put the higher pressure with the larger inlet or you get a blow torch.

Cool place by the way.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 02:58 PM
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Gorgeous.

From the early reviews I have read about Starlink, it could be a game changer for off grid people such as yourself. I have found myself daydreaming of living off grid more often lately. Guess I'm just tired of all the BS in my day to day.

Without giving too much info, what area do you live? That mountain peak reminds me of Yosemite.

Thanks for sharing.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:04 PM
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Wonderful post and pics. So glad you posted. So many people think you have to go all Grizzly Adams and live extremely remote with solar (or not) to be justifiably 'off-grid". In fact, your place seems ideal. Having neighbors for sense of security and community but still independent is ideal. Love it. I would like to see more and more of these off-grid communities.



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:08 PM
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Would love to do this but unless something incredible happens I will never be able to convince my wife. She keeps associating “off-grid” as having to go to the bathroom in a bucket despite my explanations to the contrary



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:12 PM
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a reply to: HunkaHunka

Okay,

I'll hazard a guess...

- Northern central California

- Bought (lease/land contract) it already built

- Less than 2 years




edit on 1/19/2021 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:12 PM
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a reply to: Charliebrowndog

hah... show her this thread ;-)



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:13 PM
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a reply to: HunkaHunka

Sadly, it's illegal to live off grid here. You're allowed to produce power, but any power generated is legally required to be sold back to the provincial power company at market rates in exchange for credit with the power company.

They enforce it too. They will actively search for you and punish you.

www.bclaws.gov.bc.ca...

Actually....it's been a while since i've read the laws, apparently, technically they can expropriate any land with power generation facilities....and then flood your land...damn...


(1)The authority may, for any purpose related to the exercise of its powers,

(a)expropriate any property, power site, power project or power plant,

(b)enter, remain on, take possession of and use any property,

(c)on land that it expropriates,

(i)erect, make or place on the land any structure, installation, excavation or power plant, and

(ii)flood and overflow the land and accumulate and store water on it, and

(d)require and compel a person who generates or supplies power to enter into an agreement to supply to the authority as much of that power as the authority requires.


edit on 19/1/2021 by dug88 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:18 PM
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Not in California.

This community used to be a catholic youth camp before 1956. It was sold to the small corporation that was formed to own the lots and water rights. The land is owned outright, fee-simple. It's not one of those areas owned by USFS, though we have one of those in the canyon... Ours is probably one of the only kind of communities I've ever seen like this.

We've owned here for 5 years.


originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
a reply to: HunkaHunka

Okay,

I'll hazard a guess...

- Northern central California

- Bought (lease/land contract) it already built

- Less than 2 years






posted on Jan, 19 2021 @ 03:19 PM
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a reply to: dug88

I'm very sorry to hear that. That seems like a real barrier to anything I would have ever dreamed of in B.C.



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