Right now I’m sitting in a south-facing huge, sunny window, looking through our own private valley to a larger mountain valley below and the pine covered mountains beyond. There isn’t another house in sight. Only snowy slopes, gorgeous rock outcroppings on the sides of the little valley, pines, and an eagle soaring overhead. Our new home is a modest 1,000 square feet, but it’s well-built, has pretty red fir floors, a huge kitchen, and views to die for out each huge window, even out through the large front porch across the whole front of the house.
Now, a lot of you know that we had originally planned to build our homestead in Alaska. We’d found 320 acres of remote paradise north of the Alaska Highway between two rivers that we could afford. It had no cabin, and 40 acres of tough scrub second-growth brush had to be cleared in two years’ time in order to get a title. It was a great little place, in a mountain valley with tremendous views of the Alaska Range right out the door.
We thought we had our ranch in New Mexico sold. We had a contract and down payment, and we made preparations to go. Blood testing had been done on the animals. My oldest son, Bill, had bought plane tickets to fly down and help us drive, and we had money down on a tractor and equipment a friend wanted to sell. The works. Then our buyer dropped out. And we lost our Alaska homestead because the owner was in a hurry to sell because of the clearing clause on his land.
So we again advertised our place, taking up valuable time. As we knew we wanted remoteness, we watched the spring turn to summer. And we searched for another place. We’d seen some interesting places advertised in British Columbia, and we found more of what we could afford and the wilderness we needed. So we really investigated several different areas and stumbled on another great place.
This one was 160 acres of wilderness, right on a salmon/trout river, with a glacier run-off stream right past the little cabin. There was wildlife galore. We saw huge bull moose, wolf tracks on our beach, and deer tracks everywhere. Folks around said we’d also have grizzly visitors, as well as black bears.