Hello everyone, I've been living at my off grid cabin for 3 years now in the Canadian Wilderness (Ontario). I bought 180 acres of land and started building my cabin in 2015. I started living here fulltime in 2017. I have an investment in solar power that pays me like an annuity, but otherwise my fulltime job is a youtuber: https://www.youtube.com/raspberryrockoffgridcabin/. Ask me anything!

Proof: https://i.imgur.com/YGBaZ2H.png

Please note: There are generally two types of definition for "off grid". One is what I call the movie definition, which is disconnected from society, unfindable. The more common one means that you're not connected to municipal services.

Comments: 3014 • Responses: 142  • Date: 

bndboo5416 karma

Are you tired of swiping left on the same three people that are 100 miles away from you?

RaspberryRock2292 karma

LOL

AGrandOldMoan699 karma

Just how many hot singles are in your area?

RaspberryRock2674 karma

Are you kidding? There's naked beaver swimming by my cabin daily.

AGrandOldMoan486 karma

You're getting a sub for sheer good sense of humour sir

RaspberryRock783 karma

I'm the king of self deprecating humour as well, but only because I have so much material to work with.

vercetti87164 karma

I try self deprecating humour sometimes but it usually just makes people feel awkward when I do it.

RaspberryRock339 karma

I've learned to keep my pants on. Oh who am I kidding, no I haven't.

Boomstick20102178 karma

How long took it until you saw your cabin and thought: "this feels like home" Also could you describe what a normal day looks like?

RaspberryRock3780 karma

It took a while. But check this: A couple months ago I had gone and spent a day with a buddy to film some stuff. I'm on my way back, riding my ATV in the dark toward the cabin. Like, really dark. Straight out of a spooky movie, right? But all I could think was, "Ah it's good to come home." My typical day is get up, marvel at everything. Have some breakfast. Think about doing something useful. Think about filming something for my youtube videos. Maybe binge watch something on netflix. And just do whatever.

curseyouZelda1095 karma

Not discounting how awesome that is, hows the internet your way?

RaspberryRock2758 karma

Got lucky with internet. Found a company that has an LTE tower not far away. I get 25Mb down, 1Mb up, and unlimited data. For $85/month. Pretty damn happy about that.

Frenzied_Cow1225 karma

That's better than I get for less money and I live 10 minutes outside a city with 120k people...

RaspberryRock1742 karma

Did I mention how lucky I am?

BryTheSpaceWZRD741 karma

Loving the gratitude you exude.

RaspberryRock1139 karma

Living the life. I have to be thankful.

workingatthepyramid26 karma

Which company is that with? Seems better than the Dsl my parents get at their cottage

RaspberryRock81 karma

The company is called Xplornet. They're Canadian.

UniverseBear95 karma

I'm also living at my cabin now, doing Reno's and finishing up a 2nd smaller cabin. Although mine is in the Gatineau mountains across from Ottawa...and also I just get money from unemployment insurance...and also I had to move here because I lost my job and couldn't afford the mortgage and my apartment rent...but it is beautiful here, everyday I wake up on top of my mountain and look out over a huge vista with a lake and the serrounding hills. Do some Reno's, play some banjo, maybe go swimming. Wish I could start a YouTube channel and just live here but they never seem to get more than a few views.

RaspberryRock240 karma

Youtube is a patience game, my friend. I have 270 videos and 21k subscribers. My only advice is to make every video better than the last. Make every thumbnail better than the last. And keep at it. Sounds like you've got a great place there.

Boomstick201053 karma

Sounds like a wonderful time :))

RaspberryRock79 karma

I love it here.

ulikunkel98839 karma

Do you have battery backup connected to your solar system? Describe your power system in more detail.

How about water? Where does it come from? What system do you use for collecting/filtering/storing?

And gray/black water? Is the house plumbed to a septic tank?

How do you eat? Hunting? Trips to the grocery store?

RaspberryRock916 karma

If you want real detail on my solar setup, you can see this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2gOy1162vE. But otherwise I have 2160W in panels, 8x600Ah batteries. And a generator for backup, mostly used in the winter. Water comes from rain barrels. Filtered for drinking. Gray water goes into the ground. Compost buckets for toilet needs. I still do grocery shopping like normal people. I hunt in hunting season.

Kaio_251 karma

8x600Ah

That sounds super expensive! how much did that battery setup cost?
lead-acid batteries?

RaspberryRock339 karma

Yeah lead acid. I don't remember the sticker price, but I got them at cost, of course.

GameThug218 karma

Why is that “of course”?

RaspberryRock721 karma

Because I co-owned a solar power company.

mrchaotica63 karma

Gray water goes into the ground. Compost buckets for toilet needs.

Why that instead of a normal septic system, since you apparently aren't recycling the water anyway?

RaspberryRock127 karma

We're right on bedrock here and I can't get any heavy machinery in here to do any serious bedrock work.

RickPoppie809 karma

What was the worst thing that happened while you were off-grid?

RaspberryRock1656 karma

The worst part is that my wife still lives and works in the city. She comes out as often as she can but I miss her.

Deputy-Jesus540 karma

If you don’t mind answering, what made your wife decide to stay in the city instead of moving with you? And vice versa what made you move knowing your wife wasn’t coming?

RaspberryRock1213 karma

Well she's only 4 years until she qualifies for early retirement. Hard to turn that down. And it just worked out that way, that I would work on the cabin and she would stay in the city. But she comes here as often as she can and we talk on the phone every day she's not here.

TrumpsTanLine589 karma

that's a super mature relationship! I admire you both!

RaspberryRock485 karma

It's funny, but it works.

RickPoppie293 karma

How is she dealing with the current situation?

RaspberryRock817 karma

Interesting situation. I call her "City Girl" because she's only ever lived in the city. This whole nature thing freaked her out at first. But now she loves it here. She often talks about living here when she retires. I did not push her into that.

skanedweller209 karma

I think they meant given the current coronavirus situation.

RaspberryRock531 karma

Oh, well, she's working from home right now. Here!

teaandtalk119 karma

Hopefully she'll be able to work from home more often in the future :)

RaspberryRock245 karma

That would be great. She can get a lot of work done here, maybe companies will be more open to 'work from home' times in the future.

BranCerddorion38 karma

My wife has been told she can work from home permanently now (before covid, that would have been out of the question. Now it’s a reality). It’s definitely not out of the question, anymore!

RaspberryRock15 karma

Nice! I'm hoping for just a couple days a week from home.

ineververify55 karma

Wow with 25mb down internet

Ultimate man cave situation you have going

RaspberryRock20 karma

Right?

yukon-flower487 karma

What proportion of your income comes from your investments? Many people want to live off-grid but don't own income-producing capital.

RaspberryRock536 karma

At the moment, about 60% comes from investment. But it will end one day and my youtube income will be all that I have.

perpetuatinstupidity334 karma

Bro everything aside that’s incredibly bad method for your future. Start teleworking ASAP.

RaspberryRock539 karma

Oh I should have mentioned: my wife still works and when she retires she gets a gov pension.

RaydelRay281 karma

so you have health insurance too.

RaspberryRock396 karma

Yes we have benefits.

Handboard463 karma

How many pages is your manifesto? JK

RaspberryRock780 karma

It's actually just one line. "Enjoy life, bitches!"

HannibalLecturd348 karma

Looking for a roommate? Haha. 180 acres is a lot of land

RaspberryRock336 karma

I'll start building an addition!

TrumpsTanLine161 karma

............ no but seriously. i'm very emotionally mature, very handy, love being in nature

RaspberryRock301 karma

Ah you know how many people want to come here to help out, have a beer, or whatever? I need to build a hotel, not an addition.

RedSkullyOP104 karma

I'll bring my hammer, axe and brawn

RaspberryRock119 karma

Is brawn a dark beer? Haven't heard of it.

hesafunnyone51 karma

How much do you think your sense of humor helps the rough spots?

RaspberryRock98 karma

What rough spots?

hesafunnyone33 karma

Everyone has a day where more goes wrong than right. But I agree, where you are it's hard to have a bad BAD day. I spend a week in the Adirondack Mountains every year and it's hard to have a bad surrounded by that much natural beauty. But the day the starter broke off my boat in the middle of the lake.....

RaspberryRock79 karma

Oh yeah, there's been a few times where I was in tears and just wanted to torch the place. That hasn't happened in a long while. During those times I cry for a while, then get started on fixing whatever went wrong. I dunno how I got through those times.

Bridget134250 karma

Does anyone think you're mental? Or are you actually just really sane?

RaspberryRock406 karma

LOL my wife still likes me.

Bridget13456 karma

This is a good thing! Haha.

And for the record I am of the people who consider you very sane for turning your back on the vast amount of insanity that makes up most of the modern world and its societies.

Question: You didn't include in your intro bio your motivation(s) for going off-grid. Of course one can speculate on the various reasons that an adult who was born and raised in western society might have in bidding farewell to society, but what were/are your specific motivations for leaving and what are the goals you hope to achieve in doing so?

RaspberryRock129 karma

I lived in Toronto for many years and hated it. The noise, rude people, traffic, waiting in line ups, noise, expenses, noise, etc. I grew up in a very rural area where my backyard was a forest. I just wanted to leave the city behind and get away from it all. All that and I also have a prepper mindset. It's nice to have a place like this when the shit (cough corona cough) goes down.

jtroye3236 karma

Did you hate the noise though?

RaspberryRock76 karma

Oh thanks for reminding me. You know what I really hated? The noise.

umlcat11 karma

Grow up on a city, but had to live kind of out if the grid for a while, is a kind of interesting experience. Too much noise, pollution and problems on the cities ...

RaspberryRock54 karma

Yeah I hate everything about the city. Except for pizza delivery. That part was okay.

johnwb388237 karma

How much does your YouTube account actually bring in?

RaspberryRock401 karma

About $1000/month right now. Not counting other revenue streams like affiliate links, live streams, donations, product sponsors, etc.

CandyDishOfDiamonds186 karma

You can get 1K a month from 20K subscribers? I should make a youtube channel.

RaspberryRock312 karma

I get a LOT of views for the subscribers I have. But it also took me 270 videos to get here.

CandyDishOfDiamonds106 karma

I respect your dedication, man. I moved to a city for university about 2 years ago after living in a small town my whole life, and I had the same realisation as you about how much I despised all of it. Now I'm in a situation where I really need to play the game so I can get enough money to get away from the game. Here's hoping it doesn't suck my soul away!

RaspberryRock57 karma

Start planning!

missbaby23200 karma

Why did you go off the Grid and what do you do for money? Also how are you on reddit?

RaspberryRock286 karma

I lived in the city for many years and hated everything about it. Just wanted to get away. I have an investment in solar power that pays me like an annuity, and my youtube channel pays me as well. I have internet here, just got lucky that way.

cizzlewizzle90 karma

I have an investment in solar power that pays me like an annuity

I don't understand this part. If you aren't connected to an electrical grid, no one is paying you for the power your system generates. Or are you meaning that based on what you would have paid for electricity in the city, eventually the solar system will be paid off and you'll have free power?

RaspberryRock279 karma

In Ontario, for a short time, there was a program where you could build a solar power system and get a contract from the government to sell the electricity back to the grid. You could do it on your own home or you could go a little more commercial, rent a rooftop, and put up a large system. I still own a larger system. The contract lasts for 20 years.

cizzlewizzle83 karma

Ah, so this larger solar system is not on-site at the cabin. I remember that program - the gov was paying more per solar KW/h than they were charging residential grid-tied customers. Didn't seem self sustaining and after a short time those rates started to climb.

RaspberryRock118 karma

Yes originally it was 80.2c/kWh which was a lot. The idea was that eventually the price would come down, our rates would go up, and it would all make sense. Anyway the change in provincial gov stopped the program. But I still got my contract.

DogOnABike30 karma

Holy crap, that's a lot (I'm assuming the c means cents). I'm paying about US$0.123/kWh to a private power company.

RaspberryRock13 karma

Yeah I think it's similar here, I guess. And yeah 80c was a lot. It came down fast though. In the end I think it was around 35c. Maybe less.

ChronicTheOne184 karma

How much did the land cost you? What legal issues did you have to face? Thanks

RaspberryRock318 karma

The land was $35k. The only challenge I had was getting a building permit, which I eventually got because I was able to demonstrate that I had water access.

blahblahrasputan169 karma

There's is SO much cheap private land in Canada. It's definitely the permits and access that is a killer from my research. We are thinking about getting a cabin somewhere in BC, but will wait for citizenship next year else the foreign owners tax will sting hard even with PR. Very cool man! You only get one life!

RaspberryRock112 karma

Have you seen people living on, essentially, house boats in the rivers in BC? Pretty neat stuff. Lots of youtube videos on them.

Uuuuuii4 karma

Pardon my asking but how does one prove that you have access to water? Did you have to dig a well or something to show that it’s potable?

RaspberryRock15 karma

I pointed to a stream on a map and said, "See? Water access." and he said, "Great!"

letsgodosomething175 karma

What type of wildlife do you most frequently see?

RaspberryRock322 karma

Every day we see: beavers, muskrats, herons, cranes, geese, ducks. Occasionally we see: otters, deer. Much more infrequently we also see elk, bears, coyotes, and... probably a lot of other things I can't think of off the top of my head.

Sumretardidood46 karma

Any mountain lions?

RaspberryRock74 karma

Not that I've seen or on the trailcams. I heard reports that there was one by the nearest town.

LadyTempus141 karma

Do you have any regrets? Do you miss any ‘home comforts’?

RaspberryRock280 karma

No regrets at all. But yeah there amenities I miss, like ordering pizza. I think running water is the biggest thing I miss.

Charliefromlost87 karma

I'm in the process of planning my off grid cabin and I decided instead of paying an arm and a leg on having a well dug I'm just going to buy a water cistern and use a pump like an RV/boat would have. a few hundred dollars gets you a several hundred gallons in storage and then you just need a pump. my property does have a stream I can collect water from though so it also saves me from hauling it or collecting rainwater.

RaspberryRock72 karma

Yeah without some serious exploding stuff, I can't really dig a cistern. A running stream is nice.

marsrover001124 karma

Explosions get views though. "How to dig a well in 1/100th of a second"

RaspberryRock132 karma

Views and police activity. LOL.

Howij123 karma

You mentioned that you have to cross other people's land to access your 180 acres. Do you worry about a future neighbour denying you passage? Or do have a deeded right of way?

RaspberryRock152 karma

LOL it just sort of happened, actually. And I'm in the process of making a new trail. We have no great way of getting here.

Howij45 karma

Oh, that's too bad. You also mentioned water access? Maybe you could buy an Argo XTV (they float).

RaspberryRock80 karma

Getting an argo is my backup backup plan. Hate to do it, they're so expensive. But damnit, I like living here.

glambx12 karma

That feeling of tearing across a frozen lake, knowing that if you crack through the ice, hey, at least you float! :p

RaspberryRock27 karma

In all seriousness, walking the beaver ponds in the winter is totally awesome. Like someone put a city sidewalk through our property.

Spot-CSG115 karma

How much blood do you estimate you donated to Ontarios official bird?

RaspberryRock85 karma

More than my fair share, I'm sure.

Blindsider202089 karma

Do you worry about having an accident immobilising you somewhere on your land and nobody discovering you for weeks?

RaspberryRock222 karma

Naw you can't worry about stuff like that, anymore than you should worry about getting hit by a car crossing the street. Just enjoy it.

Blindsider202030 karma

Thanks for doing the AMA and for replying. I’d love to be off grid some day!

RaspberryRock41 karma

No problemo! Start planning now!

Iamnumber666619 karma

Do you have helicopter insurance? I had it living in the San Juan's in Washington State....was a leg saver when I fractured my leg in 3 spots and almost lost my foot (blood flow cut off to foot).

RaspberryRock123 karma

No helicopter insurance but.... this is Canada man. I just have to call up and say "SEND THE CHOPPA!"

SEND_NUDEZ_PLZZ13 karma

Why did I read that in an ElectroBOOM voice?

RaspberryRock20 karma

I have that power.

Dont____Panic1 karma

Do you always have paranoia about uncontrollable risks?

I’m surprised how common this sort of thing has become in society just during my lifetime.

RaspberryRock4 karma

Movies don't help.

einbroche67 karma

How do you handle waste? Garbage, dirty water, food, human.

RaspberryRock106 karma

I burn garbage that burns. Other stuff has to go back to town. Grey water just goes in the ground. We have a compost bin. And a compost toilet.

mmullin6950 karma

Did you design your house? If so did you get advice from any builders or architects?

RaspberryRock109 karma

I designed it all in google sketchup. No experience, I just watched a lot of youtube videos. Ie: how to install windows, how to do framing, how to install metal roof, etc. It's easier in that, since it's a hunt camp, I didn't have to worry about electrical/plumbing/etc.

computercluster111 karma

How to install windows

Why not use Linux instead?

RaspberryRock40 karma

LOL

kallisti548 karma

How do you keep your rainwater fresh? How do you clean the tanks?

We have a rainwater system, but it was honestly not done right.. mosquitoes got in the tanks and you know how that goes.

We have a well now, but still have those tanks sitting there.

RaspberryRock61 karma

I keep the barrels covered, add a little bleach. But mostly when I see a lot of rain in the forecast, I empty and clean them. Also, cleaning the gutters is key. I'd kill to have a well here.

ragana22 karma

There’s no way to dig out a well? Is it not feasible because it’s too difficult to get heavy equipment there to do it or because the water is too far down?

RaspberryRock51 karma

We're on the Canadian Shield here, so yeah bedrock. And getting here is out of the question for real heavy machinery.

SwissCanuck21 karma

Wells are very very common even on the shield but yes you need the gear. But filtered lake water - is the power cost on that too high for your setup? Former north of 7 cottager here.

RaspberryRock17 karma

I'm sure there's a filter that would work for our setup, but the problem is the winter time. I can't bury any pipes and I don't have the power to keep them heated.

gordmazoon45 karma

Do any have any medium or long term projects for/in the land, or are you happy with it as is?

RaspberryRock85 karma

The land? I really appreciate the pristine beauty of it. I mean I like it just the way it is. I hope to build a workshop here eventually, but... well other than that I want to build a couple of overnight bunkies in a couple spots across the property.

UncleTogie38 karma

I want to build a couple of overnight bunkies in a couple spots across the property.

Planning on an off-grid B&B?

RaspberryRock75 karma

The thought had entered my mind. I could set up a few bunkies for people. But I don't know if I want people coming here.

TwelveCoffee40 karma

Have any bears come after you?

RaspberryRock67 karma

No but there are bears on the property. They're timid creatures by nature, just don't surprise them.

TwelveCoffee23 karma

Makes sense also what's your closest call in terms of danger weather etc?

RaspberryRock108 karma

I was scouting the property north of me looking for elk sign, and using my phone as a GPS. It was heavily overcast. I got turned around 3 times trying to get back home, and my phone battery was showing 5%.... 4%..... 3%.... 2%.... at 1% I came across a familiar part of my property. I was shitting a small brick. Also, it was starting to get dark.

TwelveCoffee30 karma

Shit that must have been scary glad you made out, did you change the way you hunt afterwards?

RaspberryRock77 karma

I dug out my compass, LOL.

WootORYut37 karma

Why live off grid?

RaspberryRock74 karma

I lived in the city for years (Toronto) and hated everything about. Traffic, noise, rushing around, rude people, noise, noise, waiting in line ups, noise, etc. Just wanted to get away from it all. Plus in the back of my mind I worried about world-changing events (cough corona cough) and wanted to be a little more prepared.

CheesecakeMMXX38 karma

Surely there’s a midway between Toronto and off-grid... like, living in a smaller town or quiet suburb. And if that’s not enough, a farm somewhere away from people, but with communal services like water and electricity.

In Finland it’s quite common (for those so inclined) to buy and bankrupt farm or closed village school and work in IT or advertising from distant. Then you can have as additional income some organic farming, tourism and such businesses.

RaspberryRock55 karma

Absolutely there are some mid-way solutions that a lot of people would be happy with. Personally I'm a person of extremes. And I like having no neighbours. And no traffic outside my window. Unless you count beavers.

pacificat27 karma

What do you use for internet access?

RaspberryRock80 karma

I got really really lucky. When I bought the property I had no idea I'd ever want internet here. When I decided to look into it, I found a company called Xplornet had an LTE tower not far away. I get 25Mb down, 1Mb up, and unlimited data. So very happy about that.

ParkieDude17 karma

What's your monthly bill?

Any problem streaming video with respect to the weather?

RaspberryRock41 karma

$85/month, well worth it. I do have issues sometimes streaming, but it's not usually weather related. Oddly, it's best when it's raining.

callipygesheep28 karma

Keep an eye on Starlink if you aren't already. That's supposed to (roughly) be the price for service when it's fully up and running.

RaspberryRock29 karma

Is that a near-earth satellite network? Yeah that'll be cool.

mindmeld2022 karma

How did you go about finding and acquiring the land?

RaspberryRock43 karma

Months of sitting on realtor.ca and kijiji. I had my criteria written down and I went to see a bunch of different properties. It's a patience game.

mindmeld2017 karma

Any advice you would give to someone who wants to do the same thing, having gone through it yourself?

RaspberryRock24 karma

Start planning right now. Make your criteria list. Save money. Load up realtor.ca every once in a while and see what's out there. Go visit some properties so you have an idea what you're gonna like/ not like.

vladloose20 karma

Realistically, how long are the winters up there? And about how much down can i put on some solar investments cause I’m ready for that too.

RaspberryRock33 karma

I actually enjoy winter more than summer here. Winter isn't nearly as bad as in the city. Unless we get tons of snow. Which can be a pain. For a solar system like mine you're looking at $12 to 15k. Not cheap.

fndlnd18 karma

Plans for future? How long do you expect to be out there? Any plans to upgrade things like water access, or even relocating to larger/better cabin and land? Or do you see this as a phase before returning to ‘normal’ life with the wife?

RaspberryRock48 karma

Plans? I want to build a proper workshop. It's a paradise here I want to live here until I literally can't. There's nowhere else I'd rather be.

JockoB1217 karma

That’s great! I build lithium batteries for energy storage and mobility applications (ebike, scooters). My battery shop is fully off-grid, which means I have a self-sustaining way to harvest and repurpose used lithium batteries. Also have part of my house connected to solar: 4kW array and 19kWh 48v lithium bank I built from BMW i3 cells. I also have another ~15kWh in loose 18650s waiting be assembled for various projects. I’ll definitely have to check out your page.

What is your solar setup? I.e., solar array, inverter, battery type and size, voltage, BMS if lithium, etc.

RaspberryRock9 karma

If you want all the gory detail, then check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2gOy1162vE. Not too far off what you have, actually. I've got a lifepo4 power wall on order from a Chinese company so I'll be putting that in as soon as I get it. My batteries are very near end-of-life, in fact one of them is already b0rked. I've seen some 18650 projects. Looks interesting.

SpyAmongUs17 karma

Is off grid cheaper than on it with the maintenance/fuel costs?

RaspberryRock51 karma

Oh hell yeah. Well, wait, maintenance/fuel? Certainly cheaper on regular bills, but then everything is a little more work here. Ie: I don't have to pay for water, but it's work to collect and filter rain water.

frillytotes8 karma

Would it be viable to install a borehole for water?

RaspberryRock13 karma

Can't get the heavy equipment out here to do it.

KapitanWalnut9 karma

I live out in the boonies as well. I was surprised by some of the places the rigs can get to drill wells. They can put in a well pretty much anywhere you can drive a minivan to. If you can get a car to within a tenth mile of your home, you could have the well pump into an insulated cistern, then run a line from the cistern to your residence for water in your residence.

Alternatively, we have some seeps on our land, and were told that those are a good place to try and dig a well by hand since a seep is an indication that the water table is near the surface, so you'd only have to go down a few feet for reliable water.

RaspberryRock14 karma

I own an FJ Cruiser and I wouldn't get that thing a quarter of the way down the trail. No way some big machinery is gonna make it here, unless by helicopter.

ulikunkel9816 karma

How much have you invested to buy the land, build the house, etc?

RaspberryRock58 karma

The land was $35k. I know, I know, ridiculously low. But there are trade offs. There's no real access here, I have to cross other people's properties on ATV. You can't log it, can't mine it. It was hell getting a building permit. So like, reasons, right? The cabin was probably under $50k. Factor in ATV, tools, solar power system, and it's all under say $120k.

Runkleford16 karma

How long did it take to get a building permit? I've been wanting do build an off grid home for a long time and the thing that I'm worried most are the permits for everything.

RaspberryRock54 karma

Almost didn't get one. I was shut down time after time. Then someone suggested I try 'Water access' since I had a small stream on the property. It worked! LOL

SocialForceField14 karma

Damn that's insanely cheap, especially in Canada bucks. When you say you can't log it are you permitted to clear an area around your cabin for fire prevention and safety? Like a 50 meter radius or something.

RaspberryRock19 karma

Yah I meant it's really really difficult for logging companies to take out trees. I can clear whatever I want. I take down trees for firewood and for making ATV trails.

BluePaintedFence12 karma

[deleted]

RaspberryRock24 karma

I got tired of all the crying.

Elbynerual11 karma

I've been very interested in this sort of life, but my one leash to civilization is the internet. You mentioned binging Netflix.... what do you do for internet and how expensive is it?

RaspberryRock19 karma

Just got lucky. Discovered a company called Xplornet has an LTE tower not that far away. I get 25Mb down, 1Mb up, and unlimited data. So very happy, so very lucky. Oh and $85/month. Totally worth it.

OG_Hotrod9 karma

What type of music do you like music to listen to while you’re enjoying the view?

RaspberryRock14 karma

jdsweet6535 karma

Did you purchase this land or inherit it? Either way did you have to do any extra stuff like zoning and development licensing? I want to purchase a plot out west some where, but know there are several things that have to do with the land itself that come into play. Did you deal with that? Do you pay property tax? Did it increase as you developed the land?

RaspberryRock10 karma

I purchased it for $35k. The cabin is technically a hunt camp, so there's very little in the building code I have to deal with. Property tax was originally about $160/year but jumped up to $800 something when the cabin was built. (bastards)

mojojojo315 karma

How often do you go to town for a supply run?

RaspberryRock11 karma

As often as I need. I mean let's be honest, when you're running out of coffee, cream, eggs, bacon, whatever, you're headed to town, amiright?

Plane3105 karma

Hey, I have few questions:

How long is the drive to the nearest civilization (shop and/or neighbours) on a ATV?
Do you plan to expand your cottage or what you have is big enough?

RaspberryRock8 karma

It's a 30 minute ATV ride, then a 15 minute car ride to get to the nearest town. I can't expand the cabin because the building permit only allows a max of 800 sq ft. I could potentially get another permit and build another cabin but I doubt I will.

biasedlobster4 karma

My thought would be septic and a well or cistern? Solar for energy as well? Also I always wanted to have a summer home like this. Can you recommend a place? Do you like where your location is? If you were to start again or give advice what about location and zoning may be important to know?

RaspberryRock4 karma

We're on the Canadian Shield here so it would be really difficult to dig a well or cistern. We have solar power and it's great most of the time. I do like the location, it's Eastern Ontario. You do want to make sure you can get a building permit.

pap194 karma

how’d you work around the winter weather when you built the cabin?

RaspberryRock8 karma

Oddly enough, I thought I was going to fly all the materials in by helicopter and build it over the winter. Turns out that building in the winter totally sucks. Also living in a tent in the winter sucks. I started building in July and had enough completed that I moved in in ... September? Got my wood stove in by November, so I was good.

Anticitizen-Zero3 karma

As you’ve mentioned you’ve bought a lot of land, how would you feel if you ever came across someone else living “off-grid” somewhere on your land?

I ask, as I’ve watched the Bald and Bankrupt YouTube channel quite often and he’s met a few people living similarly (not by choice) and there’s always camaraderie with strangers. I’m guessing off-grid Canadians would be very much the same!

Side question: any good fishing nearby?

RaspberryRock3 karma

Well, there's liability to consider. I'd ask the person to leave, but it would only mean crossing the property line to someone else's property. There's tons of properties around here that aren't used for anything.

miiitchb3 karma

What’s your water source?

RaspberryRock3 karma

Rain water mainly. Or snow in the winter. We also bring water from town in big jugs for backup.

boredandtired2 karma

You don't have to be specific but where abouts in Ontario? Timmins? Soo? Kenora? How far north we talking?

RaspberryRock2 karma

Not far from Madoc.

Oogwayisback2 karma

What do you appreciate more now you're off the grid?

RaspberryRock8 karma

Social interaction. There's nobody out here. But I'm a bit of a loner anyways. And youtube brings me closer to people.

--caddish--2 karma

Hi Rock! Love your story. I bought my second house very close to downtown Boulder Creek, CA in November, and although it is completely on-grid right now, I do want to convert it to be as off grid as possible. Could you possibly give any tips on making this happen? I live by 3 rivers that I could potentially draw water from, a decent amount of sunlight despite the redwoods, and about a half acre of land.

RaspberryRock2 karma

Oy well that's a much longer conversation. Solar is wonderful but it's expensive. Look up ram pump for your stream. Um, I'd hit up youtube and look for ideas in videos.

Josh1billion2 karma

Are you Tom Mabe?

RaspberryRock2 karma

Damn that dude looks like me!

trishul142 karma

Why?

trishul142 karma

Beautiful!

RaspberryRock2 karma

Oops, you meant the video!

Neonguy1231 karma

Hey, I think it's really cool what you've done. I've been interested in going off the grid the past number of years, but i feel like losing my job has thrown a spanner in the works in regards to financing it. My plan now is to basically start camping all over the place looking for an ideal plot of land, and then marking it out while i buy resources etc. However it's unlikely to be for the next while.

A couple of questions that you may or may not be able to answer, then.

1) What items do you recommend if i will be camping for a week or so at a time?

2) how did you go about starting this project off? Like, how did you start going about building your cabin from the start?

3) How safe is completely 'living off the land'?

RaspberryRock1 karma

So you don't have the property yet? 1. Camping wise.... Get a two burner coleman propane stove for your cooking. Um, the rest is just.. camping gear? Get a solar charger for your phone/laptop. 2. After I purchased the land, one of the first things I did was set up a carport/shelter so I could live in it and keep a lot of my tools and crap in it. I highly recommend doing this. I built a bed out of 2x4 and plywood and that was really good idea too. Sleeping on the ground sucks after a while. 3. How safe is it? Not sure what you mean. I feel just as safe here as I did in the city. A lot safer, actually.

herowithacomputer1 karma

I skimmed thru the thread to try and see if you answered this. So sorry if you already have. Do you have any type of permaculture going? What is your access to food like? Are you growing most of it yourself?

RaspberryRock2 karma

Food doesn't grow well around here. We're on the Canadian Shield, very little arable land. We have a garden but I don't expect it to do well. So yeah we still hit the grocery store.

Goolajones1 karma

Roughly how much money does a person need to buy 180 acres in remote Ontario?

RaspberryRock1 karma

Bought this for $35k. It's land locked and really hard to get here, and the previous owner thought it was impossible to get a building permit. That's why it was so cheap.

SphereIX-24 karma

Sad attempt to promote a youtube channel. Some rich kid buys 180 acres in the woods. Still has to pay taxes. Still uses the internet. Rides around on ATV. Tries to define it as not being connected to municipal services. What a joke. Where you're getting your internet access from buddy? Where are you getting your gas for your atv?

ragana7 karma

He literally answered all these questions in above posts you asshat.

RaspberryRock5 karma

"asshat" is such a wonderful term. I need to use it more often.