Off-Grid Cabin Life…

About Us

We purchased the “OliveSheep River Retreat” in late Winter of 2015. We had been searching for the right land / cabin for us, for about 3 years, before finally finding a place to call our own. There are so many things to consider when buying a cabin – and our list of wants vs. needs was a long one for sure! In the end, so many things end up being “trade offs”, in that there are things you can do without – if you gain something else in return.

The cabin is nestled on about 8 acres of dense woods, in the heart of the Manistee National Forest. There is privately held land to our North and South, a river to our West, and a massive plot of Federal land to our East (about 5000+ acres).

Being “off the grid” for us encompasses all the major amenities; no sewer / septic, no power, and no running water. There is a well on the property, but it ceased to function a few years ago. We haul drinking water in with us when we stay at the cabin, and pull water from the river in buckets for additional tasks – such as washing dishes, and taking showers. An out-house is used for disposal of… well you know. And we’re powering up the cabin for a few hours each night, with a quiet little Honda EU2000i generator. Down the road, we may add a small solar bank, and we’d like to either have a new well dug or start a rain-water collection system.

This website will be used by us to journal our trips to the cabin, and to share our adventures with friends, family, and anyone else who wishes to come along on our journey with us!

Todd & Rachel

1 Comment

  1. Yubin

    I think many communities are beninnigg to recognize how smart it is to collect rain water and encourage it. One of my readers from British Columbia lives in a place that actually permits it as an alternative to drilling wells. Hopefully more places will clue into this simple logic. The only draw back, if you can call it that, is that (rain water collection + composting toilets + grey water systems + off-grid power) would eliminate virtually reason for declaring land unbuildable. In other words there are simple sustainable ways of dealing with waste and utilities that would make it possible to live virtually anywhere. Hmmmm?The other states that have prohibited it in the past were Colorado and Utah. I’m not sure what the current status on those two are but I know folks in Colorado have been pushing hard to have those laws changed.

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