Family of 5 Living Off-Grid | BOAT ACCESS ONLY

Mark and Chera rescued and renovated an old cabin and transformed it into an epic off-grid home for their family of 5. The catch? There’s no road to get there, so they had to figure out how to do absolutely everything by boat and barge: transporting building materials, equipment, belongings, workers, as well as commuting to and from town for school and work.

They were limited in how much they could modify the existing cabin, so to make space for the kids’ bedrooms, they attached a yurt to the house with a mudroom. For heat, they have a wood stove in the house, a pellet stove in the yurt (to keep a constant temperature for the kids), and backup wall-mount propane heaters for really cold days, or times when they’re away from the house during winter (to prevent pipes from freezing). Since propane has to be delivered on a barge, it’s really expensive so they try to limit their propane use as much as possible.

For electricity, they have 3 systems. First, a solar power system with 18 panels and a large battery bank which works great in the summer even though they’re surrounded by mountains. But during the colder, rainier months, the system doesn’t keep everything running so they installed a hydro turbine which creates electricity using water pressure from a creek up the hill, and this provides 24 hour electricity for most of the year. As a backup to these two systems, they have a propane generator but they try not to use it unless they need to.

The kids still attend school in town, and Mark and Chera have flexible jobs so they can work in town or from home as needed. They have 2 enclosed boats with GPS and heat for the 20 minute commute back and forth to town.

We loved getting the chance to spend a whole day and night with this lovely family and seeing how they’ve made off-grid living comfortable and fun for everyone!

Thanks for watching!

Mat & Danielle


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Music & Song Credits:
All music in this video was composed, performed, and recorded by Mat of Exploring Alternatives.

Editing Credits:
Mat and Danielle of Exploring Alternatives

Filming Credits:
Mat of Exploring Alternatives

Photo Credits:
Additional photos provided by Mark and Chera

30 Replies to “Family of 5 Living Off-Grid | BOAT ACCESS ONLY”

  1. Rashone

    Posh living. Very expensive. How many people can do that? VERY few. Oh…they have wifi…and a fridge…and lights…I've seen a few videos of people living off the grid, and they live in trailers out in the desert somewhere with no nothing. Oh God forbid their kids would sleep in a tent. Seriously???

  2. mocat1

    Not only is this place amazing, I love the Robert Munsch book cameo and that the boat is named Persephone. 😁 (Canadians of a certain age get that.)

  3. Kim Hayes

    So, the only real clue as to where we are is the reference to the Stellar Jay, which is PacificNorthwest. Throw me a bone …why not type a location into the incredibly long description of the video. The house is amazing!

  4. Brian the Red

    Very beautiful. Too bad they didn't use that hvy machinery to make their place more under ground (if possible). Would likely save them time/money on heating. Kudos on creativity. Hope this family is safe and stocked up.

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