Living a more nomadic lifestyle full-time can have its benefits: reduced living expenses, no property maintenance, a freedom to pack up and go whenever it feels right. But sometimes even diehard nomads want to settle down for a bit. Take blogger and photographer Foster Huntington -- creator of #vanlife and author of the book on mobile living called Home Is Where You Park It. After travelling around for the last few years, he's finally created a jaw-dropping double-platform treehouse to live in, outfitted with its own skatepark.
Located in Skamania, Washington, on a piece of family-owned property, the Cinder Cone treehouse is a place that Huntington can now call home, after years on the road documenting the fascinating lives of vanfolk all over the country. (Definition of a cinder cone: a "steep conical hill of tephra (volcanic debris) that accumulates around and downwind from a volcanic vent.")
Huntington himself got started on his nomadic passions after quitting his job in New York City during 2011, and he hasn't looked back since. The Cinder Cone treehouse was a way to set down some roots, as he explains in this interview with Mpora:
I’ve been travelling for the last three years and I wanted to set up a home base. I really liked living in a small space, like in my camper, and a treehouse kind of seemed like a good evolution of it.
Huntington's treehouse was built with the help of friends, and his carpenter mother and her boyfriend who is a timber-framer. Huntington's college friend Tucker Gorman of Perspective Design/Build helped to oversee construction of the two 220 square feet spaces that are perched in two Douglas Fir trees, and which are also connected with a narrow footbridge. One is Huntington's living space, and the other will be a guesthouse.
There are hot tubs all over the place, and the small skatebowl, dug out of the hillside and made out of reinforced concrete, is simply amazing (though this certainly increases the carbon footprint of the project by quite a lot!).
Huntington, whose fascination for small, efficient spaces shines in this unique project, explains why he chose to live in a treehouse in the woods instead of the city:
I feel like it’s important to live in a place that’s really inspiring to live and in this day and age of the internet, you can kind of work from wherever.
People have these notions that you have to move into the city but you really don’t. I have Wi-Fi here and full 4G internet. And that’s all I need to make a living, so I could be here or I could be in Manhattan and it’s way cheaper to do what I’m doing here.
It wasn't a cheap treehouse; Huntington estimates that he has spent around USD $170,000 to realize his childhood dream -- but he points out that same amount of money won't buy much in Manhattan (not even a parking space). Created with a lot of love and with the participation of family and friends, Huntington's new home is going to be an idyllic backdrop where unforgettable new life memories will be made. Check out more over at Cinder Cone, Foster Huntington's book, Instagram and website, A Restless Transplant.