Posts by Lloyd Kahn (239)

Tree Houses in Columbia River Gorge

Screen shot 2014-09-09 at 7.13.03 AMFoster Huntington’s 6-speed 6 cylinder Toyota 4×4 pickup truck camper is featured in Tiny Homes on the Move (pp. 22-23). He stopped by our studio on his way north from Baja last year and we shot photos for the book. It’s an beautiful rig, the best I’ve ever seen for off-road/surfing travel. He was heading up the coast, looking for new adventures.

Well, he sure found some; yesterday he emailed us:

Hey Lloyd,

Hope things are going well in for you. I’ve been working on a project building tree houses and a skatebowl on in the Columbia River Gorge. Check it out here:


tumblr_napswx44nf1ts8049o1_1280Check out Foster and friends building, skating, jumping into waterfalls, hot-tubbing. Are these guys having fun? I wanna be there! (and 40 years younger).

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Kurt Buetow's Rolling Hangout and Yurt

These came in the mail from Kurt Buetow just as we were finishing Tiny Homes on the Move, and I just dug them out.


Hi Lloyd,

As you know, I’m into these hanging chairs. In the forty years since I won the International Canvas Furniture Design competition in Tokyo, I’ve spent time in the woods and find it pleasing to select technology I can kind of deal with, like a hay wagon and bent wood and a ’70s-era electric tractor I charge with PVs.

I like the idea of shelter, but no more than you need. Feet on the ground, the side bows on this umbrella fold up so it becomes only nine feet wide. Nice place to enjoy the rain, there’s a hammock, and a cot, tables, and storage. Maybe somewhere else tomorrow.


Kurt2Mode of Transport

This is how I move the rolling hang-out (’70s General Electric). The solar panels are mounted on a steel-wheeled McCormick Deering hay wagon running gear from the ’20s. In summer I tilt them east and west through the day.

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Justin Cutter's Mobile Greenhouse Truck

justin cutter truck

I was skating on the street one day and passed this striking greenhouse truck (for lack of a common descriptive phrase). It’s one of those things that you just GET when you see it. I stopped and talked to Justin Cutter, fellow skateboarder as well as gardener. This isn’t only one of the things you get when you see it, it’s one of those things you instantly LIKE. What a great idea! He takes it around to schools and teaches kids gardening. Read More …

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Alice's Custom-Built House Truck

house truck

My ex-husband and I built our home in the ’70s on a 1956 White truck, which cost $250. We used many recycled materials. Shipping crates became siding, discarded oak pallets and tiles became the table, etc.

CB-05It had a circulating toilet, double-paned Plexiglas windows and skylights, and a 30-inch porch at the rear. It had a 125-gallon water tank and a 60-gallon propane tank — self-contained. It’s solidly built and runs great!

There were two full-size bunks for the four kids. The upper bunk had been removed when these photos were taken. The spinet piano can barely be seen.

Studs were linked at the bottom with ¼-inch steel angle. It prevented disaster when one time someone drove into the side of the house truck. The driver totaled his car; we only have to replace a bit of siding.

The window design was determined by the size of the discarded Plexiglas scraps, and inspired by bathroom windows in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.

We bolted three metal baffles between the stove and walls, staggering the bolts so as not to transfer the heat. The stove could be fully fired up and the wall behind it would still be quite cool.

I learned all my carpentry and building skills working on this truck. One day while driving myself, the porch railing got caught in something, ripping it half off, and it was sitting on the ground. What to do? I pulled out some tools and reattached it on the spot before driving away.


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North House Folk School only I didn’t live so far away from The North House Folk School, I’d be hanging around there a lot. The number of classes they have is amazing. Birchbark canoes, blacksmithing, tool making, timber framing, fiber arts, on and on. I’m just looking at one page, and I’d take the class on making a crooked knife, and another on sharpening. Read More …

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A Child's Tiny Home in a Gypsy Wagon


I was going over some old files in preparation for working on our new book on 21st century nomadics, and ran across this letter from Serena in Home Work (p. 176). It refers to the 37 Chevy flatbed truck converted to a rolling home by Joaquin de la Luz and his wife Gypsy, and featured in Shelter (pp. 90–91), and in later years used as a bedroom by 4-year-old Serena. It was such a nice example of happy childhood memories, I thought I’d reprint it here.

My earliest memories of the Gypsy Wagon begin when I was three or four years old. At that point, our family had settled down in a little house on the Klamath River, in Northern California. We had all moved out of the Gypsy Wagon but I really missed it. I remember begging my mom and dad to let me use it as my bedroom. Luckily for me, my parents were such free spirits that they could really relate to my independence. The wagon became my room.
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Logarithmic Spirals from the Garden lunch today.

“…Romanesco broccoli resembles a cauliflower, but is of a light green colour … with the branched meristems making a logarithmic spiral. In this sense the broccoli’s shape approximates a natural fractal; each bud is composed of a series of smaller buds, all arranged in yet another logarithmic spiral. This self-similar pattern continues at several smaller levels. Read More …

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