Craig’s Ontario Cabin

Craig from Ontario, Canada shares his story with us today.

I bought the place 3 years ago. Originally I was just looking just for land with the mind to build a 10 x 10 cabin. But I got lucky the real estate add was for 19.89 acres with a dilapitated 14 x 16 cabin. There was also an out house, shed and 12 x 8 sauna which were not mentioned.  All the buildings  did need re shingling some paint and a good sweeping. But otherwise everything was fine. It just goes to show ya that some peoples lack of vision is some else treasure trove.

This all cost me less than $20 000 Canadian. I turned the out house into a composting toilet, which by the way has no smell what so ever when used properly which cannot be said of the majority of traditional out houses. It is located in northern Ontario west of Sudbury. There was hydro but I haven’t bothered to hook it back up. It’s more fun without it.

Here is the updated outhouse with leftover laminate floor from a friends kitchen. I’ve sent a before and after for the sauna just to let folks have a look at what little one needs to do to fix a place up.

The Sauna a simple refurbish, I just painted it green and put on a new door I got from work, and re shingled.  I am a superintendent of a housing development and have plenty of access to discarded supplies. Official rights to dumpster diving and garbage picking.

Sauna Before

Sauna After

At present I am not able to live out there full time but I plan on moving up full time in about 4 years. We mainly use candles, oil lamps and Led lighting especially outside. The idea out there is not to live the way we do in the city. There is no water at present so we use rain catchment and get our drinking water from a spring a mile up the road. Everything is done with thought.

Unlike the city where switches are flipped, faucets turned and toilets flushed. Out here we have to think and that’s what makes it so great. A step closer to the sort of practical intelligence our ancestors relied upon. Things are done slower and better for it.

Not being hooked to the grid makes hand tools essential and since everyone is so happy to get new lithium powered drills, and saws I have inherited every possible hand tool I could ever dream of.

With one 30 Watt solar panel we charge up a 12v battery ( Eliminator Power Box 800) for radio, ipod charging and cell phone charging. Anything more and children usually find away to drone off into technology. The main plan is to deprogram from urban life and soak up the essance of our true ancestral environment. Back to the source.

Thanks Craig for sharing your story with us.

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Vin - September 15, 2010 Reply

This is really great. Very simple and the setting is beautiful. Now if there were a little lake or river nearby for fishing 😉

MJ - September 15, 2010 Reply

What a great place!!! Good work, Craig and thanks for sharing.

Sheryl - September 15, 2010 Reply

Not sure about life without a faucet, but I really appreciated the thoughtfulness and the beauty of Craig’s house and the lifestyle he is adopting. From an urban perspective, it seems that Craig is doing the equivalent of giving up the car and the TV for a slower, richer experience. Congrats!

Dominic Ebacher - September 15, 2010 Reply


How did you find your property and get such a screaming good deal?

Tim - September 15, 2010 Reply

Beautiful, I hope you and your family get to enjoy this for years to come!

XsTatiC - September 15, 2010 Reply

Awesome Craig. Thanks for sharing. Where in Ontario is this located?

Randy - September 15, 2010 Reply

What an awesome cabin! Your place may have just moved into my #1 favorite of any cabin on this site. Good job!

Debra Jordan - September 15, 2010 Reply

Good job! What a treasure!

none - September 15, 2010 Reply


“How did you find your property and get such a screaming good deal?”

Craigslist is a good place to find them. Just do a search for “cabin” in your area.

Elizabeth Goertz - September 16, 2010 Reply

good post, inspiring.

Joe3 - September 16, 2010 Reply

Beautiful………’ll be living the life in 4 years. I’ve been to Sudbury from SSM, it’s a lot too isolated for my style, but that doesn’t prevent me from being envious………LOL. Thanks for sharing.

SeattleSuze - September 16, 2010 Reply

I feel rested just looking at your photos and reading your description. What a life!

Cheryl - September 20, 2010 Reply

Good for you Craig. A beautiful place and just right like I want to do with my land.
Canada is the only country I would consider going to if I left the US.I plan on flying your beautiful flag next to ours on my ridge. The Canadians are so friendly and interesting.
Thanks for sharing.

Craig - September 30, 2010 Reply

Finding property for sale in Canada is pretty easy. We have a multiple listing web site. You choose your settings “land”, “residential”, etc.. and price range and there you go pretty much the whole country is available.

Craig - September 30, 2010 Reply

Actually you first choose “residential properties” on the home page. Then click on the little map of Canada on the right. Then “land” or whatever in the box right below “Looking For”. Easy peesie.

TR Kelley - August 23, 2011 Reply

Excellent! Love your vision and your approach, especially the part about not replicating the convenience of city utilities.

Cedar-pine - December 17, 2011 Reply

About the “drinking water from a spring a mile up the road” I was wondering if you had a pic of the spring you get your water from. Currently I have to bring my own water, but I hadn’t thought about catching some water naturally. Enjoyed this post, love the cabin, (the wood especially) wouldn’t mind to see more. The main plan sounds excellent! Although I would have a hard time to plug out of the computer for too long, for sure the hours with it would be decreased.

Laura - January 3, 2012 Reply

I love this! I am also in Ontario in a tiny house – same boat as you, it is not my forever home. Look me up at and let me know if you have a blog too will you?

Kirsti - September 23, 2012 Reply

So, where outside of Sudbury are you? I’m looking for something like that myself & I grew up in Sudbury.

If you hear of anything like what you have coming available, just respond to this post!

Craig - March 3, 2013 Reply

I finally got the chance to move out to the cabin. I lived there for a year. It was amazing. I still go out on weekends and eventually plan on moving out again in a few years. The quiet is absolutely intoxicating.

Patrick - November 23, 2013 Reply

Craig, what a lucky find! And, Kent, thanks for reposting this with all the cool photos! Anyone who shares Craig’s philosophy of living life slower and simpler, in touch with the elements, will love (if you can find a copy) the book, TO A CABIN, by Dorothea Lange and Margaret K. Mitchell. Filled with striking B&W photographs and thoughtful passages, it sums up for me all the joys of simple cabin living. Long out-of-print, I think you’ll be rewarded for hunting down a copy. Thanks again for this inspiring posting!

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