Two Homesteaders Collaborate On Weather, Part 2


| 2/19/2014 9:09:00 AM


Tags: remote living, off-grid, Ed Essex, Washington, Bruce McElmurray, Colorado,

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Part one of the joint collaboration between Ed Essex and Bruce McElmurray dealt with the question how does the weather impact your life and homestead. Ed and Laurie live in Washington state and Bruce and Carol live in Colorado. Both live remotely in the mountains with Ed living at 4,200-foot elevation and Bruce living at 9,750-foot elevation. While they live several states apart and at different elevations they both share similar weather experiences along with a few variances as well.

In this the second part they will answer what is their most difficult weather season and what their greatest weather experience has been. Both Ed and Bruce living at different elevations and different western locations have similar but slightly different concerns with the weather they experience. Their respective answers appear below.

What is the most difficult season you face each year?

Ed Essex Winter has to be the hardest season for us. We’ve already mentioned the extra work taking care of the animals and our road. We also spend more time indoors. To combat cabin fever we built one extra room just for Laurie and one for Ed. If either one of us needs to “get away” we can go to our special hideouts.

Laurie uses her room for her many crafts. Sewing quilts, weaving and felting. She even has a tapestry loom in there. Ed built a typical man cave complete with sports, martial arts, outdoor sporting equipment and a TV.

Due to passive design features in our home we don’t heat or cool the house from July through mid September but all of the other months we heat with wood. We heat with a masonry heater. When the temperatures get below 15 degrees Fahrenheit we also fire up the custom masonry kitchen stove. Maintaining a fire for that many months can be a lot of work. The masonry heater helps with that a lot because you don’t have to tend it all day and all night long. You just build a fire every 12 hours. It will burn for about two hours and you shut it down and enjoy the radiated heat for the rest of the 12 hour shift.




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