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Alaska Wilderness Yurt Adventure

When Tonya and Stephen purchased land in the wilderness of Alaska, they knew it would be a challenge to build. Their land is bordered by the Chugach National Forest on one side and the Wrangle St. Ellias Wilderness Preserve on the other, 1 mile east of the Copper River. Since it’s very remote, with the closest road 25 miles away and 35 miles to the closest village, the only access is either by boat or aircraft.

Bringing the yurt to the site by helicopter.

Bringing the yurt to the site by helicopter.

They chartered a helicopter service and made twelve trips to bring in all of the materials for the deck and the yurt. The loads were placed high upon a bench, which offered a fantastic view of the lake in front and the surrounding mountains. With the help of three friends, they set out to build their yurt in the wilderness.

Building the deck for the yurt

Building the deck for the yurt

They cut a trail into the site and moved all the materials to allow for the set up of the Yurt. After clearing the area of all the alders and trees, they began setting the foundation blocks. At the end of the 1st day they had the foundation set and half the 2X6 floor installed. Not too bad for a 16 hour day! By the end of the 2nd day they had finished the floor, erected the lattice wall, compression ring, rafters- and the liner, insulation and cover for the roof (this was a 12 hour day). On day three, they installed the fabric wall and insulation and were finished by lunch time…32 hours from start to finish!

Alaska yurt

Completed yurt

They plan to use the yurt as all-season retreat, so they installed a solar system for power. It has a full bathroom (with shower), full kitchen (with refrigerator, freezer and stove) and a wood burning stove from Englander to heat the yurt. They installed a well to fill the 200 gallon cistern. The yurt is a fully functional home, but it’s just located in the wilderness of Alaska. They have leather sofa and chair, full sized bed and a cafe style dinette set. The yurt is over-looking the lake, which offers a chance to watch the Trumpeter Swans and their 2 cygnets, bears, beavers, eagles and a host of other wildlife.

Yurt interior

Beautiful interior

Stephen and Tonya had looked at several options for their wilderness home: wood frame, log and yurt. They investigated several yurt manufactures, and settled on the 27′ Colorado Yurt because the finished product was excellent and the options were what they looked for. Plus, they told us the customer service was excellent! They thought the instructions were very good to follow.

They are looking at setting up 2 additional yurts and offering them as a wilderness experience for those who wish to really get back to nature. They could also be used for winter time helicopter skiing groups.

Stephen and Tonya have now spent the summer in their yurt and love everything about it. They say, “Colorado Yurt, you produce an awesome yurt!!! Thank you!” and “PS. The fishing is great!!!”

Tonya's fish

Wow! Look at that fish!


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