Small House

Yurt Life and Permaculture In High Sierra

Hidden deep amongst the mountains of California’s High Sierra is a stunning little permaculture oasis. Surrounded by towering trees and flourishing gardens, one young family has taken the leap into permaculture and homesteading on this land, where they have also built a beautiful little yurt which the family now call home.

Traditionally, yurts are commonplace amongst the nomadic peoples of central Asia. Here in the west however, they are still relatively rare, although they are fast becoming a popular housing option for those seeking affordable and alternative living solutions.

Bret and Beth purchased the beautiful land and had intended on living on the property in an RV while they took their time constructing a small straw-bale home. Those plans though were quickly changed with news of another member joining the family, which set the couple into action of constructing a comfortable, quick and affordable home where they could raise their new child, Sequoia.

A yurt was the perfect solution. Fast to assemble, affordable, well insulated and designed to handle extremes of climate and temperature (as is experienced in the High Sierra) the couple set about constructing their new home, with the plan that it would be a comfortable place to call home until they eventually construct their forever home on the property.

The couple did all the construction of the home themselves, which is filled with wonderfully artful touches, designer flare and where the entire construction process was embedded in the permacultural principle of reuse – as old items were repurposed, up-cycled and given new life within the walls of their home. Extra space was created for sleeping by constructing a small wooded cabin which was build adjoining the yurt to provide some additional space for the growing family.

Doing all the labour themselves the couple has done a fabulous job of transforming the yurt into a comfortable home. There’s a big kitchen with lots of space for food preporation and preservation (a true homestead essential), space for Sequoia to play, a super comfortable lounge around a wood-stove and work spaces for their online enterprise.

Ensuring their permaculture homestead is a sustainable venture, Bret and Beth have also managed to build a business around their lifestyle, creating a training website with focuses on helping others who aspire to the homesteading lifestyle to do the same. From their property and cosy yurt home, the couple run their website High Sierra Permaculture.

This is the story of a family who have worked hard to carve out a beautiful and sustainable lifestyle for themselves. One where they could have a close relationship with nature as well as with each other. Be sure to watch the full video tour above to see the full tour of this fantastic yurt home!