I Would Like To Live In The Woods.

When you stop and think and see all the people in the city who are rushed, annoyed, and fed up about the everyday things that are out in public.  I quite often finding myself thinking oh my god, wow, or just what a dumb ***.  How people in their own mind get in the rush for themselves, but always seem to bring other people in their outraged state who just want to get through the day as safe and happy as possible.  This is when I sit and think about going to the mountains, in a comfortable cabin. No one around, just me, my woman, the animals, the smell of the fresh trees, and no worries from some butt head who likes to give other people problems because of the day they're having.  This would be my wish.  Live off what the land has for you.
tjd39 tjd39
5 Responses Aug 12, 2010

naturenanny, You’re right, it takes a special mentality to live in the woods. I don’t have to worry about (1) driving 15 miles to (2) get bread. First, I now have to ride my bike that distance, and second, I’ve made all my bread for about fifteen years. I’m sure you make bread too. To me, making bread is so ingrained (no pun intended) that it seems like part of my life. I really don’t enjoy bread that isn’t homemade any more. If the local grocery store is anything like the one that used to be near me, any bread is moldy and the milk is sour. I think most of their business was selling beer and cigarettes. Seriously, they had salad dressing that had expired three years before. I cheat nowadays though. Ten years ago I bought a refurbished Kitchenaid mixer with dough hook. How do you heat? I assume you must put up wood. I used to be able to get by on 3 ½ cords of dry oak. One night the coyotes came really close. I remember what a thrill it was to shine my flashlight out the bedroom window and count six pairs of golden eyes staring right back at me! The coyotes never bothered the chickens. They kept the cat population in check. The winter before last, there were seventeen elk in my yard. I probably won’t see that again. I just hope that I can make enough money in the next fifteen years to pay for medical insurance so I can retire (I’m 55). I’ve always had a pickup with a canopy to camp in, but the mileage isn’t great. I may build a little teardrop travel trailer to tow behind a small car. I hope I have great friends to go along with me.

I live in the woods of Arkansas. I could never live in the city. Just driving there makes me nervous. It takes a special mentality to live this way. No conveniences. If you want a loaf of bread you may have to drive 15 miles to get it. We do have a hardware and feed store and a small grocery store. We live on garden garden food and deer meat. I can my own food, sew my own clothes, quilt with scraps, needle work, you name. I love this life. At night you can hear all the wild animals in the woods. Sometimes you can even see their eyes glow at the edge of the woods.

As wonderful as the idea of living in the woods sounds, it has some drawbacks. Unless you inherit land, you either have to come up with rent or mortgage payments. Either way, there are still property taxes. So you’re still in the rat race. <br />
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I live in an awesome place in the country, and it’s paid off. But I have poor fences, so can’t raise stock. Something is always happening when one has animals, so I’d need to have funds saved for a veterinarian. Guess what! Raccoons love to eat laying hens! Gardening takes a lot of water, and water is in such short supply here that, even with three wells, I have to use city water. The deer eat practically anything I try to grow. I’ve had some luck with tomatoes. I have apple trees and make cider. But I’ve been here a long time, and only recently bought a grinder and press. <br />
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If you freeze any food to preserve it, you pretty much need to be on the grid. Solar collectors, windmills and batteries are very expensive. I made my own wood for many years and heated with a woodstove. I have a chainsaw, log splitter and pickup to make that easier. But it got to be too much for me, so I put in a pellet stove. I have to be on the grid to power the blowers and logic circuit. <br />
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Don’t get me wrong, I love it here! Sometimes it’s so quiet that no matter how hard I listen, all I can hear is my heartbeat. Other times, the wind rushes, the frogs croak, the crickets chirp, the owls hoot, and the coyotes howl. The sky at night is amazing. But neighbors across the valleys have installed farm lights, which pollute my darkness. Two companies now want to put 36” high pressure natural gas pipelines across my property. Nothing but grass can be grown on top of them. Damn the Texans! <br />
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I lost my job in IT almost two years ago. There’s not much work around here. I’ve been getting by mowing lawns, doing repair jobs, and my family has helped a lot. I’m now selling the place that I’ve put my heart into. I’m selling a lot of my stuff on craigslist. The State took away my driver’s license because I owe back child-support for my daughter. She is vacationing in Morocco this summer. She’s in college and just got married. The child support accumulated as though I had a good income, even though I had none. The good thing is that I’m getting in better shape riding my bike fifteen miles each way into town. The bad thing is that log trucks love to see how close they can come to me.<br />
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I think moving into town will be good for me, because frankly, it gets lonely out here. I plan to rent an apartment. Maybe I’ll pick up a small ranch house, if the price is right, or maybe a duplex. I’ll stay in the area because I have family here, and I’m able to help them with things they can’t do. I think that I’ll make friends who like to go hiking, fishing and camping. I’ll make friends who like to write and take pictures. Maybe I’ll even find a job or start a business. <br />
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Here’s the dilemma: When you live off the grid, or partially off the grid, you can easily wind up making your life more complex. You wind up with all kinds of expensive unique tools to save time. Here are a few: A tiller to garden, a brush cutter to attack invasive blackberries, a sprayer for poison oak, thistles and blackberries, a mower to create fire breaks, a pickup to haul stuff. I’m in the process of radically simplifying my life, and it is scary. It attacks my sense of who I am. <br />
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Keep your dream! Just be aware that isolating yourself and maintaining a country or wilderness lifestyle is not without its challenges. Developing lifelong close friends is much more important.

Yes, she would love to do that! She loves the mountains and woods.

Take your woman with you & make it happen! Do it!