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Home Forums General Discussion Family moving back to island in AK. Please help!

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    For refrigeration I would think strongly about a root cellar. If your cabin is on blocks dig down a little and set it up there or build one near the house. That way you avoid electricity needs.

    Filtering water:

    Use a bucket with holes with a cheese cloth for example in bucket. Then add charcoal in a layer say 3-4inches, then sand 3-4 inches and then gravel on top. This will filter your water and make it drinkable which will wipe out the need for hauling in water. You can setup a system where the unfiltered water is stored in a gravity fed tank. it then feeds into your filter and then into a clean water tank. a ball auto lock valve is added (the flotation part) to the clean filtered tank but is connected to the pipe of the unfiltered one so when its full no water is filtered.

    Most likely they all know how to take care of themselves as they have done so without you all this time. Maybe wood carvings? decorative pieces, Christmas tree decorations, Halloween lanterns ect made from goods on the island. Small items like bone carvings or wood lamps.

    As for internet and phone the following applies:

    1. A booster antenna should help the cell signal if you get it from the porch.

    2. You can research sat internet vs standard phone based systems.


    My hubby and I live off grid (going on 6 years now) and we purify our water with at Berkey Light water filter, using the black filter elements they are the only ones allowed by the FDA to call themselves water PURIFIERS, all the others are required to say “filter”, not “purifier”.

    You should also get a backup set of the black elements

    These do not need water pressure or electricity, the black elements are scrubbable (you can clean and reuse them), you can test them to make sure they are working (I suggest doing this before you leave) by putting Koolaid or food dye in the water in the top container and make sure no colored water comes through the bottom. They had made a bad batch of the filters and they leaked, that was well over a year ago and they assure me that problem has been fixed, I assume by now the potentially bad black elements have been sold through (and replaced).

    These WORK and work well.


    Horse Islanders

    My wife and I are planning to move back to Juneau, Alaska, where we are both from. We have land and two small cabins on a little island outside Juneau , where we used to spend weekends in the summer and fall. We have decided to live there full time and home-school the children. We have two boys, ages 4 and 6. We will be making a blog soon to share photos, and show folks what we’re working with in terms of the land and the size of the cabins, etc. In the past, we have used a rain catch system for water to boil and use for washing dishes or bathing, and have hauled out drinking water. We have a Honda generator that we use to run power tools, etc. Our biggest concern right now is finding a way to filter rain water to use as potable water, refrigerating food, and finding creative ways to earn money. A regular job back in town will be difficult since rough weather will keep us from taking the boat across. There are a number of people with cabins on the island, and we were thinking we could do some sort of care taking or maintenance. We do get cell reception from the beach and sometimes the porch, so I don’t know if that means there would be a way to have internet access or not. We were thinking about things we could do locally to sell on ebay, like scrimshaw of faux ivory, quilting, etc. If anyone has any advice or ideas, we would really appreciate it. This sounds crazy to most people we talk to about it, but we are determined to make it happen!

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