Build a Yurt Workshop
Local Living Ventures group in Canton, New York
The group has brought me in to teach a 3-day workshop where we will install a 20′ yurt for the members of the group whilst concurrently building a 10′ yurt from scratch to encourage students to build their own. Yurt building, camping, food, art projects, and long term off-grid living discussion will all be present for this weekend of camaraderie!
Come help make this thing happen! You will learn about the history, uses and realistic expectations for yurt living, and “how-to” build one yourself!
There are lots of projects that need helping hands – planning, building, decorating (beautiful arts project for Mongolian designs!) and much more.
Join us to create beautiful, sustainable, and move-able housing we can all love!
A full weekend of camaraderie, Date To Be Announced. It will be late in May
Construction Supervisor is master yurt builder Steve Reed of Surely Yurts
- Two levels of participation:
- Camping on site, meals provided: Amount to be determined
- Day Tripper rate: Amount to be determined
Please indicate your particular skill level with construction, arts, etc. (all levels welcome!) and your dietary and camping preferences.
Go to this link to register and scroll down.
The basic canvas wall tent, used by outdoor enthusiasts and the military for hundreds of years, can be turned into more than a tent with the simple addition of a wooden platform. My family has some property in a beautiful meadow with mountain views and we are looking to put up a canvas wall tent on a wooden floor to use for guest camping and enjoying the summer nights. Research for these tents has turned up some fantastic photos of what can be created with these portable but heavy duty structures.
Wall tents are different than tipis and in that they have four sides and a peaked roof, much like a tiny house. Canvas wall tents have been used by the military as early at 1740 and were used extensively in the American Civil War. Hunters and trappers in the 1800′s used wall tents while on the frontier and they are still used today as shelters in refugee camps and by soldiers in Iraq.
Canvas wall tents range in size from about 8-10 feet wide and 10-20 feet long. They can be supported with a simple wood frame, steel poles or traditional timber poles cut down on site. The walls are typically 5-6 feet high. Some canvas tents are large enough to contain a wood burning stove and the canvas roof can include a hole for a stove pipe. Furniture, carpets and even wall hangings can be used for interior decoration.
Canvas wall tents can actually be mounted to a hard surface deck. This keeps the tent from being blown away and damaged in the wind and also keeps out unwanted outdoor critters. These types of tents are called deck tents and can be secured even further with cable systems that tie the tent down to the deck.
Because of their sturdy construction and ability to let in fresh air while protecting campers from the elements, many canvas wall tents have become popular for glamping enthusiasts. The tents can be enjoyed in the summer and fall and then packed up and put away when winter arrives.
For the new year, I’m planning on taking some time away from the computer to contemplate the next few months, practice some yoga and do some quiet meditation. While searching around for a retreat location, I kept running into meditation retreats and centers that had some sweet tiny houses, yurts and cabins for rent. Each of them are also located in some beautiful locations.
Staying at one of these meditation or yoga retreats is not only a good way to cleanse your body and soul, but you can also get some great tiny house and small space ideas.
The Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm in Grass Valley, California teaches classical yoga, ayurveda, vegetarian cooking, jyotish and vedic sciences, and permaculture. You and your family can stay in several different accommodations including a tent, a dorm and shared or individual cabins located in a beautiful valley.
The El Capitan Canyon luxury nature lodging (a little out of my range) is not a spiritual retreat, but does offer some beautiful cabins and yurts to stay in on the California Coast. The center offers massage, food and room packages and tours of the coastal area. You can stay in safari canvas tents, yurts and tiny cabins with names like “Peace Tree”, “Lone Stone” and “Shaded Creek”.
The San Francisco Zen Center at Tassajara offers an introduction to Zen meditation and has several places you can stay like wooden yurts and Japanese tatami cabins. The center is quiet, rustic, gets its power from solar energy and offers vegetarian meals. The redwood yurts like the one shown above have views of trees and mountains and can accommodate up to three guests.
Affordable retreat cabins which happen to be next to bubbling waterfalls are available at Spirit Falls in Pine, Arizona. The small cabins (Cave of the Heart, Hopi Creek and Bodhi’s Place) are located in the pine trees with views of local wildlife like elk, deer and hawks.
If you’ve always wanted your camping experience to be more elevated, the new Stingray Tent, built by UK company Tenstile and distributed in San Francisco, is a new design that looks like a floating sea creature. The Stingray, which can be set up on the ground or suspended in the air is a three season tent that can fit up to three occupants and their gear.
This aerial tiny shelter is made of UV resistant and waterproof materials and anodized aircraft aluminum poles. The full tent is 13x13x13 feet and it can pack down to 27×10 inches. A rope ladder and ratchet straps come standard and optional accessories include luggage nets, tablet pouches, shoe nets and mobile phone pockets. Two access points in the bottom hatch allow occupants to access various parts of the tent and you sleep in a 6 ounce reinforced cordura hammock. They are currently on sale for $799. The Stingray Air, with a removable, PU coated waterproof polyester flysheet sells for $1,199. Which stings just a little bit.
So, if you are looking for a more clandestine tiny house, you only need to look up.
Photos by Stingray Tents