AuthorTopic: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?  (Read 921 times)

Offline RE

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Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« on: June 11, 2017, 02:04:13 AM »


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Published on The Doomstead Diner June 11, 2017






Discuss this article at the SUNā˜¼ Table inside the Diner



This is Part 1 of a 4 Part Series which will air on the Diner for the next 3 weeks of Sunday Brunches



Last week, a friend of mine now living down in the Lower 48 in WA came up for one of his more or less bi-annual visits.  We used to work together up here.  He has a rental Real Estate property here still, plus a part time job gig as well doing the books for a small biz up here.



It was fortuitous timing for me, I've been in the market for a Stealth Van to go traveling with and bringing the message of Collapse to the masses, but without a 2nd driver along it's hard to make the kind of on-the-spot CASH deals you want to make for Used Cars.  If you flash the Greenbacks at a Seller and say you will buy it right here, right now, you instantly shave at least 10% off the asking price.



So, after he attended a weekend wedding of the guy he does the books for, he dropped by and we went Stealth Van shopping! šŸ™‚  I had done research the prior few days and found one which looked good down in Anchorage.  It turned out to be as good a buy as I had hoped for, and I made the deal on the spot and he drove my Ford Explorer back home to the Mat-Su Valley while I drove the new Stealth Van home.  Well, not really NEW (it's a 1999), but new for me.  It also performed pretty much like a new vehicle in my test drive and then on the drive home, so I was (and still am) very happy with this find and purchase. EVERYTHING on this vehicle works, including the overhead console Cathode Ray Tube TV circa 1999 in the passenger area for the kiddies to watch cartoons on during long trips. CD players front and rear also work.  I got it for what I figured to pay for this type of vehicle ($5000), and it fulfills the requirements I was looking for in a Stealth Van.  Together with an enclosed trailer to hold a good supply of preps, it's the ultimate land-based bugout machine, and you can put together the whole rig for under $10,000, including the preps.  You can even live in such an arrangement right now,, and there's a whole community of people who do this.  You might have listened to the Podcasts I did with Van Dweller who has been living this way for 50 years, or read my article on Storage Unit-Van living so you don't have to be pulling a trailer around all the time.



My hope here is assuming my health holds up in the remaining pre-Collapse period would be to go on the road with my rig, take pictures and vids, do interviews and write stories about the Homeless People I run into and the abandoned Malls and decaying cities.  I hope to speak at places of Worship of all denominations and PTA meetings and Town Council meetings, wherever they'll let me speak.  I'll drop in and visit with as many of the Diners as I can.  However, I have quite a few obstacles ahead of me to be able to fulfill this Bucket List dream, so I give it only a 50-50 chance I will actually pull it off.  I call this Bucket List Dream "Brother RE's Travelling Salvation Show". lol






Plenty of climate ideologues will chastise me for hypocrisy in burning all that gas, but it's not really going to make a difference in the grand scheme of things far as the climate is concerned.  I'll only be able to do it for as long as BAU continues, and during that time between all the container ships burning bunker fuel, all the jets burning kerosene, all the JIT Big Rigs burning diesel, all the SUVs on the daily commute burning gasoline and all the Power Plants burning coal or natural gas, it's not even a drop in a drop in the bucket.  What it accomplishes though could make a difference, to wake some people up to the kind of world they will face in the future and how to get ready for it, both in physical and psychological terms.



https://i0.wp.com/images.cheaprvliving.com/choice-me.jpg



After we did this deal for the van, the guy who got married invited him on a fishing trip with the Bridal Party and family members, about 13 people.  As their trusted Biz Accountant he's worthy of such an invitation (there were about 80 people at the wedding, a 50s age guy getting married!).  So he drove down to Kenai for this fishing expedition in a Charter boat, owned by another friend of the guy who got married so they got a good deal.  Breaking down the cost of the charter between all the adults who went out, it cost my friend $150.



http://www.alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/images/stories/activities/fishing/saltwater/kodiak_charter.jpg



They really lucked out into a picture perfect day up here on the Last Great Frontier, it was in the 70sF and nice and Sunny.  The fishing was also good and they Maxed Out on their limit on Halibut, having to throw some of the smaller ones back. My friend caught 6 himself.  On returning to shore, they didn't even have to do the processing themselves, there are professionals at the dock who do this for you, amazingly fast.  In the end, after the whole catch was divied up between the principal adults on the charter, my friend got around 20 lbs of fillets out of this.  So what was the total cost and how does that compare to what you would normally pay for Halibut at the supermarket?



http://saltwatersafari.com/images/large01.jpg Well, he spent $150 for the charter, $70 for the gas for the round trip to Kenai, and then another $25 to take the frozen fillets vacuum sealed back down to WA packed tight in a cooler in checked baggage on the plane.  So that is $245, call it $12/lb as opposed to the $19/lb for Halibut you usually pay in the grocery store up here.  Not sure what it goes for down in the lower 48.  So good savings there, as long as you don't count in the cost of the round trip airfare itself, which from WA is usually in the neighborhood of $500 or so.  If you count that in, then the cost of your 20lbs of halibut skyrockets from $12/lb to about $38/lb!  Not a very economical way to feed yourself that way! lol.  But if you are traveling up here for other reasons and are spending the money for plane fare anyhow, you get a nice vacation and some cheaper fish too.  Doing subsistence fishing though is really only practical as a means to feed yourself if you actually LIVE close to the fish.



Then you have the next question for people who actually DO live here in Alaska and don't have to fly on a plane to go fishing?  How far is it practical for them to travel to get to the nearest good fishing ground?



Well, in this case it took traveling from the Mat-Su Valley to the Kenai Peninsula in a car, which as long as you got gas you can afford does not take all that much time. From the Mat-Su Valley to Kenai is around 200 miles, and takes about 4 hours, depending how fast you drive of course.  You can go down there, fish & fillet, drop the fillets on ice then be back home to vacuum seal them and freeze them in your Frigidaire Freezer inside a day.  Now good for easily a full year of scrumptious eating, and probably quite a bit longer than that as long as your freezer keeps working.  I have vacuum sealed 5 year old steaks I have pulled out of the freezer for a BBQ and they are pretty much as good as the ones I ate fresh out of the refrigerated rack at 3 Bears the day I bought them.



https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/e5/e8/4e/e5e84edd7ade84dfd26a3a489b701410.jpg BUT…if you do NOT have a car and gas to make the round trip to Kenai, these fish are mostly out of reach for you.  In a Kayak, if you left from say the Knik River and paddled your way down there along the coast, this would take you several days/weeks, same for the return trip.  With no refrigeration either way, you would have to salt/dry the fish you caught for the return trip.  Not very practical or even possible really, which is why almost all the Native settlements from the days before the European Invasion here are right on the coast.  You go out and fish every day, you eat fish every night, you dry and preserve some fish for the winter, rinse and repeat every year.  Natives up here did no farming whatsoever.  They lived on fishing, hunting the moose and some gathering of tubers and nuts that grow up here pretty well.



So as it is laid out and organized now, in the absence of the gas to make it to and fro the fishing and hunting grounds that are still quite good around here at the moment, you just couldn't do it.  The population would need to migrate out to the spots that are good for this, which generally speaking are where any of the old native villages are located.  They're there for a REASON.  That's where the FOOD is!  Said villages however are in some of the most inaccessible (by land) places in Alaska, even today there are no roads in or out of them.  They are lonesome and desolate places these days for the most part also.   The old culture is gone, alcoholism rates are through the roof and now they live in manufactured housing shipped in by barge and dropped on the permafrost, which is now not so perma anymore.  It's sure not very likely you will get the vast preponderance of White people who currently live in Anchorage, the Mat Valley and Fairbanks to move to these places when TSHTF.  Rather, most of them will try to GTFO of Alaska if they can, if it's not too late and they missed the last plane ride back to the Lower 48.



Given all of that, can the people who remain here create an economy not quite so far down the evolutionary ladder as mere subsistence Fishing & Hunting?  IMHO, yes it is possible.



http://www.wildnatureimages.com/images%204/100623-001..jpg In the first place, there is a lot of infrastructure in place already which can take up some slack.  The Alaska Railroad which starts down in Seward and goes up through Anchorage and the Mat-Su Valley past Denali (Mt. McKinley) and ends in Fairanks is still an actively functioning railroad for both passengers and freight.  It brings down coal from Healy which currently mostly gets shipped to China.  It brings Touristas who don't want to drive and/or want to experience the railroad adventure up past many scenic vistas on the way to Fairbanks.  For an Alaska Vacation, many people do this in conjunction with a Cruise to do some Whale Watching and/or a Fishing Charter to go catch some Halibut.



So, fish caught down at the mouth of the Kenai river could still be moved quickly up into the interior of Alaska, as long as you have a source of energy to power the trains.  Switching back over to steam locomotives powered by coal, Alaska has plenty of that and it's right along the right of way of the Alaska Railroad too.  No difficult transportation to get the coal to the trains.



http://buyalaskagrown.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/fmstore1.jpg Similar to fishing, produce grown here in Alaska on the farms in Palmer can be shipped up and down the line on the Alaska Railroad.  People don't tend to think of Alaska as a great place for farming, but for certain crops they grow very well up here.  Root vegetables and tubers such as carrots and potatoes grow very well. Although the outdoor growing season is short, the days are very long and those vegetables that do grow well up here grow very big.  Alaska holds World Records for vegetables like Carrots and Cabbage.  Other vegetables grown locally that show up in my local supermarket are various forms of squash like Zuchinni along with Pumpkins.



Beyond those vegetables grown outdoors, Alaska sports a lot of Greenhouses, both small private ones along with large commercial ones.  The local hothouse Tomatoes on the vine we get up here are very good (for modern tomatoes), although about twice the current price for the tomatoes shipped up from Mexico.  That network of Greenhouses could be expanded easily by using glass from the buildings in Anchorage and from abandoned Carz and McMansions.



For meat, we have both the hunting available from the large population of Moose along with ranchers in Palmer who raise Cattle, Bison, Big Horn Sheep, Pigs and Chickens.  Many people also raise their own chickens as well, the local ordinances in most communities allow this.  People also have Worm Farms, although currently used for bait or chicken feed, not direct eating by local Homo Saps.



About the only thing we don't currently have is a local Dairy, the one operational one shut down a couple of years ago.  However, the equipment still exists and this would not be that difficult a thing to start up again.



https://media1.britannica.com/eb-media/39/96239-004-31A629B3.jpg So on the food end of things, I think we could be pretty self-sufficient, especially if many people start leaving the state which I suspect will happen when the North Slope stops pumping oil down the Alaska pipeline and the Big Oil Companies make their exit.  They employ many people and the money those employees make is the main driver for the secondary economy of goods and services up here.  Similarly, Mining of other minerals currently brings in revenue to Alaska, but after TSHTF there won't be much of a market for those anymore outside of Alaska.  The Tourist/Vacation industry is a third driver which brings in decent revenue over the summer as people come up here to experience the Wonders of Nature now mostly gone from the Lower 48.  They are mostly retirees with Pensions, 401Ks and Social Security though, and that sort of vacationing will become a thing of the past.  Besides, the planes they fly up here on to experience Nature's Beauty won't be flying anymore to get here.



Finally, the main source of external revenue for the State of Alaska is the FSoA Military, which runs 3 large military bases here, Elmendorf/JR Richarson Air Force Base, Fort Wainwright Military Base and Clear Air Force Station.  There's probably additional Secret ones as well.  This also brings in substantial revenue to run the secondary economy, you pretty much cannot walk around Walmart without seeing somebody in Fatigues, and most of the people working for the Military permanently stationed here wear civies all the time anyhow.  After TSHTF though, major features of this will be both the dissolution of the entire federation of the FSoA into more local Regional entities, along with the collapse of the FSoA Military. So while the soldiers left here may take over the local Goobermint and run the show with their leftover weapos and ammo, the military won't be a source of revenue after this point in time.



In addition, it's not certain we have to immediately give up the Internal Combustion engine here after TSHTF in general around the rest of the world.  While the North Slope is quite depeleted these days in terms of producing enough Oil to economically push down the Alaska Pipeline, it can still produce a good deal of oil to refine for local use as distillates, and we do have our own Refinery in Fairbanks, although it is currently Mothballed.  It could be restarted though, and refined products of gasoline and diesel transported down by train to Anchorage and the Mat-Su Valley, where most of the current population of Alaska currently lives, along with Fairbanks itself.



Besides the remaining oil on the Slope, there is a ton of Natural Gas sprinkled around here locally, and internal combustion gasoline engines can be fairly easily modified to run on NG.  It's not quite so easy to do fillups as you need to work with compressed gas and in an accident you could end up with an explosion that might take out half a city block, but it could be done.



https://www.wildsalmoncenter.org/content/uploads/2016/02/AK-SusitnaDam-map-333x352.jpg Besides that, there is talk and ongoing debate about building a big Hydro Plant by damming up the Susitna River.  In current dollars, estimated to cost around $5B.  Such a Hydro Plant would provide enough "clean" electric power to run many of Elon Musk's EVs.  I'm not personally in favor of this dam due to ecological damage to the fisherie, and I doubt it will get built due to economic reasons, but it remains a possibility if it can be financed & built prior to SHTF Day.  The environmental lobby here is also pretty strong, and remains vehemently opposed to this dam.  The Tourist industry also not in favor of it.



We are also fortunate there are no Nuke Puke plants up here, it was never even remotely economically feasible to build one due to the low population so spread out over a large territory.  So no decommisioning costs or danger of a melt down or worse, a critical mass explosion of the core when cooling and containment is lost.  Most areas of the country that are densely populated have one or more Nuke Puke plants in reasonable proximity, like Fukushima is to Tokyo.  That includes most of the East and West Coasts of the FSoA, and many spots along the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers bisecting the center of the land mass.  Alaska only has to worry about what gets blown up in our direction when these plants inevitably fail, but by then it should be farily well diluted.  Not so for someone who is 100 miles straight downwind of such a plant, of course.



So the food problem seems soluble, and so does the energy problem here for a small population.  In terms of the climate problem, even a 10C rise in average Global Tems would just make the neighborhood somewhat more comfortable and balmy.  It is unlikely to exceed Wet Bulb temperatures up here for quite some time to come, certainly not in the next decade which Dr. McStinksion Guy McPherson predicts as the Termination Date for all Humanity, and Global All Dead People, aka Near Term Human Extinction..



The biggest problem here in making a transition though is not the energy or the food or even the climate, since warming up 4C would lengthen the growing season and reduce the heating requirements for living. The most difficult thing in the near term is replacing the current Monetary System with something that will actually work.  Alaska would have to issue out its own money of course, and what is that money going to be based on and how will it be distributed to the population to equitably distribute the resources?  How will jobs be assigned to the population, and what job categories will there be?  Who or what organization will be responsible for organizing this all up, under what type of political system?  How will reproduction be controlled so as not to repeat the same mistake of population overshoot that went down before?  These are very difficult questions to answer in a post-SHTF scenario.



https://pgithens.files.wordpress.com/2017/05/burning_money.jpg Despite all those problems, I believe Alaska still represents one of the best Survival Holes on Earth in the face of both Global Economic Collapse and Global Climate Collapse.  It has all the essentials locally, and it starts out here with one of the lowest population densities on the planet, and there will certainly be die off and outward migration from the current numbers.



Prior to the European Invasion, the estimated population of First Nations people that lived up here was around 60,000.  With the knowledge and technology that we have acquired since then, I believe the population that could be supported in a sustainable manner is probably double, and perhaps triple that.  Call that around 150,000 people.  That is about 20% of the current population, so to get down that low you only need 80% to leave or die off.  I believe the vast majority of people currently here will leave when the economy collapses.  For the people who remain, mostly only the very hardy will survive, and I will not be one of them.  I will in all likelihood live longer up here than I will just about anywhere else on earth though, certainly much longer than if I was currently living in Syria or Yemen.  It's also currently fairly peaceful, and the shelves are filled with food goodies from around the world to sample at my leisure (at least if I actually still had an appetite for eating them anyhow).  If you are an observer of Collapse, you couldn't ask for a better Perch.




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Offline RE

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2017, 01:42:23 AM »
Now UP on Global Economic Intersection!

http://econintersect.com/pages/opinion/opinion.php?post=201706122144

RE
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Offline RE

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Seeking a SUNā˜¼stead
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2017, 02:11:57 AM »


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Published on The Doomstead Diner June 18, 2017



 






Discuss this article at the Doomsteading Table inside the Diner



 



This is Part 2 of a 4 Part series on the sustainability of Alaska in a post-Collapse World, and how to make it happen.



Read Part 1 HERE.



 



I'm taking off for a shakedown cruise of the new Stealth Van tomorrow, and will be keeping a diary of the trip, and will publish the whole thing after I get back.  Meanwhile, I've given the trip a whole additional purpose besides just checking the gas mileage and reliability of the SV, I am going to do some Land Shopping for the first SUNā˜¼stead!  :icon_sunny:



Our project in South Carolina has stalled, it's generally speaking out of budget for where we are right now financially. Without some investors from Inman, it's just not going to happen there.  So far, although SUNā˜¼ got a very positive response from the Movers & Shakers in Inman, to date nobody has ponied up one thin dime to make the project happen there.  So it's time to move to Plan B.



If we can't get the money together for a demonstration property in SC, I'm going to look in other states for more affordable land that is also more remote with a lower population density than the Inman area of SC, which is basically Suburbia as it is laid out now.  That is not congruent with the SUNā˜¼ mission unless you can get the whole town to reorient around Sustainability, and right now that doesn't seem in the cards either.



The first and easiest place to look is of course right where I AM, here on the Last Great Frontier.  I'll also be traveling down to WA to visit with my friend Big Sam from Seattle, and we'll scope out land in WA, OR, ID & MT.  Overall these are the two best survivability locations in the FSoA IMHO, I never was particularly enthused about SC due to its location on the East Coast and high population along with the close proximity of several Nuke Puke reactors.  SC is Nuke Central, they don't just have one Fukushima waiting to happen, they have three!






SC is where the other SUNā˜¼ principals currently live, so I was willing to move there if we could get a viable SUNā˜¼ Project going in that neighborhood, but that doesn't look like it is in the cards anytime too soon due to lack of sufficient MONEY.  On the other hand, it's unlikely the SC branch of SUNā˜¼ will move to Alaska or even Idaho anytime too soon, but I think they will have a change of heart when the Oconee Nuclear Station goes full on Chernobyl.  The problem of course at that point would be the ability to GTFO of Dodge and make it across the country with your truck and trailer rig.  Will you be able to get gas for it at that time?  You might make it to Idaho perhaps, but I don't expect much in gas to be available along the Al-Can by this time.



http://hoodoorecreation.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/TrapperCreek_05.jpg So I went Googling for available land around Talkeetna, which is where I was planning on heading in the Stealth Van anyhow, and I found what looks like to be a PERFECT property at the right price.  I have 3 screen shots of the satellite view of the patch of land (about 5 Acres, but with many more parcels around it completely devoid of human habitation at the moment), and it comes in at a real bargain price I can afford, cash on the barrel head, no mortgage, owned Free & Clear for SUNā˜¼.  :icon_sunny:   It is within budget!  Particularly since there are no building codes or requirements whatsoever for this land, you can camp on it if you wish, you don't need to drill a well or put in septic, you can just shit in the woods if you like. However, I will experiment with Humanure composting techniques. šŸ™‚ It's has frontage right on a year round glacier fed running creek coming down from Denali, which actually is really a river, not a "creek".  At right you see a pic of Trapper "Creek" in this neighborhood.



First the zoomed out map of the entire neighborhood.



 



https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/54/Talkeetna_railway_station_2011.jpgAs you can see, it is just south of Denali National Park and you can see where the Glacier ends and the runoff begins.  The town of Petersville which is the closest without having to cross the creek (no bridge there to Talkeetna) has a population of…get this… 4 people as of the 2010 census! lol. We would be a suburb of this town. lol. Talkeetna does better with a population of 876, although that expands quite a bit during the summer Tourista season.  It's got a nice Main Street with bars and restaurants, although they are only open from around May-September.  It's got a couple of General Stores where you can buy a few items, but generally people who live around there drive down to Wasilla every couple of months to stock up at Wally World and Fred Meyer, the Kroger affiliate here.  Definitely stock up for deep winter from Dec through Feb, you never know when you might get snowed in.  The distance is only around 70 miles though and it's right on the Parks Highway, so even in mid-winter the road is usually clear.  It's also a stop on the Alaska Railroad.



Zooming in a little closer, you can see the general terrain features of the neighborhood.  Lots of ponds and small lakes, along with Trapper Creek.






Because of all this ground level water available year-round as glacial runoff, there is no need to drill a well.  That saves you a shit load of money right there.  It might even be potable straight out of the creek, but I have a water distiller anyhow and besides that, I'm sure just boiling it would be sufficient.  Plenty of wood around for fuel to boil the water with too.  No neighbors around for miles to complain about the way you are living, and certainly no Home Owners Association.  YOU are the whole HOA!  There's obviously no grid electric flowing in there, but the SUNā˜¼stead will be off-grid with solar and wind anyhow, and micro-hydro possible on Trapper Creek.  Also of course you can use a generator as long as the fuel remains available.  I have no hypocrisy problems with doing this.



For Internet access, it should be close enough to Talkeetna to get 4G, if not I will go for a satellite link.  Talkeetna is also within range of an Ewz, although probably not my current unit, I will need an e-trike from ZEV for that commute. Also will invest in a gas powered 4-wheeler to go cross country, which is a lot shorter than going by the roads, if there is a spot shallow enough to cross Trapper Creek anyhow.



Finally, up close and personal on the property itself, bordered in Yellow.






Nice wooded lot right on Trapper Creek, and the spot actually looks like a good fishing hole.  Here's the ad description of the property:




Almost 5 acres under 2 miles off MP 121 Parks Hwy, on the trail system. Crystal clear Trapper Ck frontage, and a short ride to September Lk. Selling under the assessed value. This wonderful getaway is being offered with terms of 20% down, 6% interest, 5-7yr amortization. Nicely treed with birch and spruce. Trapper Ck is reported to have rainbows, grayling, moose, and bear hunting.




http://alaskabushadventures.com/images/m0251.jpg Moose and Bear hunting right on your own property!  Who could ask for more!  Not that I will be doing any of that, but once a few younger Heliopaths show up they can do that.  I'll stick to trapping some small game.  Fishing is even probably out because I can't cast or reel in too good anymore, but I might try doing some Spear Fishing with my Pistol Crossbow.  The trees are also Birch and Spruce, so you could tap the birch trees to make birch syrup in the spring.  That is done a lot around here.



http://n7g2722vxpcn1fx5s3njdgqr.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/FDome_75_11.jpg What about a domicile?  For that, to begin with I will put up an F-dome.  Again, I'm not capable of doing the construction of the deck and assembly of the dome myself, but I will hire a couple of the unemployed native carpenters in my complex for this task.  I'll also have them build a greenhouse for growing tomatoes, zucchini, green beens etc.  I'll grow Alaska Carrots & Alaska Potatoes outdoors in raised beds, since the soil around there isn't too good, nowhere near the quality of Palmer soil.  I'll set up a small Hydroponics setup to do herbs and spices.



Now, will I actually LIVE on this property year-round through the winter to begin with?  Hell no, not in mid winter for sure, not until there are other Heliopaths living on the property with me. I'll use it from spring after the melt to fall at the end of harvest time, around mid-April to early September around here with the current climate. SUNā˜¼ can hold Workshops and Convocations during the summer as long as the Jets are still flying and BAU continues.  I'll keep my digs in Palmer for the Winter.  There will be no additional cost to me besides some very low taxes since I will buy the property for CASH.  In winter, besides holing up in the digs I will do some Sunbirding, and fly down to the lower 48 to visit friends, burning the jet fuel while the planes are still flying.



http://www.shtfplan.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/mountain-house-food-medium.jpg What about making it survivable for a SHTF scenario where I have to move there full time?  Can't feed myself off the land probably, not by myself anyhow.  So I will double up my stock of food preps, now good for over 2 years.  Say a 5 year supply, I'm not going to live that long anyhow. If I make the next year, that will be fairly miraculous. Got water from the creek, fuel to cook and heat with from the forest, food.  No worries about Zombies coming for my food and killing me, if anybody is hurting and shows up, I'll give it away.  When it's all gone, I die.  Going to the Great Beyond here soon enough anyhow.



Overall, this Plan fits into what it is currently feasible for me to do on my own without additional investors in SUNā˜¼.  I can spend whatever time left that I have walking the earth a little closer to nature.  I can straddle both worlds and do some demonstration projects for SUNā˜¼ on the property. Diners will always be welcome when TSHTF, if they can get there of course.  Until TSTF, we can hold Diner/SUNā˜¼ Convocations on the land, and do Workshops.  Until we get investors, SUNā˜¼ will focus on its Mission of Education about Collapse, which we can do on a limited budget utilizing the web.  I'll even pay Albert's plane ticket up here for a kickoff workshop on Biochar. lol.



I'll take pictures of the neighborhood and hopefully the property itself, although unless my Ewz can negotiate the terrain off the road there (about 2 miles worth) I won't be able to get to the site itself. I have been to the neighborhood before, and it just depends on the given terrain and tree density whether I can negotiate the Ewz around.  Just have to see when I get there.



Will this particular patch of land be the one I buy for SUNā˜¼?  Probably not, since first I want to go look at properties in WA, OR, ID & MT with Big Sam from Seattle.  However, as you can see from the Google Earth screen captures, by no means is this the only property of this type out in that neighborhood.  So I will be patient on this, unless it just looks so juicy when I get there and my Ewz can give me a full property tour that I can't resist the Buying Opportunity. LOL.



Road Trip Diary and photos coming next week in the Plan B of an Alaska SUNā˜¼stead. :icon_sunny:




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Offline David B.

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2017, 04:43:23 AM »
What is 5 acres worth in that part of the world?
If its important then try something, fail, disect, learn from it, try again, and again and again until it kills you or you succeed.

Offline RE

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2017, 06:39:57 AM »
What is 5 acres worth in that part of the world?

Varies tremendously.  Depends whether the land has road access or not and how big a parcel you buy at a time.  Buy a big parcel, it gets cheaper by the acre.  How close or far from any services or schools?  Any improvements to the land like clearing brush for a site pad?

You can go anywhere from around $2000/acre to $10,000/acre, generally speaking outside of larger towns like Anchorage where in town acreage can be very pricey.

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Maiden Voyage of SaVANnah
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2017, 04:44:33 AM »


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Published on The Doomstead Diner June 25, 2017






 



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This is Part 3 of a 4 Part series on the sustainability of Alaska in a post-Collapse World, and how to make it happen.



Read Part 1 HERE. Read Part 2 HERE.



 



In our last episode of the Alaska Sustainability & Resilience series, we shifted the focus of the location of the first SUNā˜¼stead from South Carolina to either Alaska or the Pacific Northwest of OR, WA, ID and MT.  This due mainly to the MONEY problem of raising enough FRNs to pull off a project like SUNā˜¼ in the relatively expensive neighborhood of the East Coast of the FSoA.  Besides the expense were the problems of the presence of Nuke Puke reactors in the neighborhood, plus the fact this area has already been developed for the most part around the unsustainable Suburban Car dependent model.  So, Plan B has been implemented to look for cheaper land in a less populated area with NO NUKES!



http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/ujZKxt.lh1QlIU5Ux4pB1w--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTE5NTtweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz02MDA-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ucomics.com/nq131023.gif



Since I LIVE in Alaska and am currently twiddling my thumbs waiting for my SSA Hearing to resolve the dispute between them and Workman's Compensation, I am utilizing the time to investigate some properties up here on the Last Great Frontier as possible SUNā˜¼stead locations.  In the last article, I hunted one down in Talkeetna which looked just about PERFECT, at least on Google Earth.  However, you can't really tell for sure about a property even with this marvelous technological wizardry, there is no substitute for Boots on the Ground.  So in order to do this investigation, I took my new (for me, it's actually a 1999 in very good condition) Stealth Van for its Maiden Voyage up to Talkeetna to have a look.  What follows below is my Travelog Diary of the trip.



—————-



Overall SaVannah performed pretty well, although she downshifts pretty hard on the grades and the handling is typically coarse as with most of these light trucks.  I will bring her in to have the tranny looked at before taking it across the Al-Can, for sure.  I will be very depressed if I have to drop in a new tranny for  $3000.  :(  I haven't done a fillup yet to get a precise gas mileage figure, I'm going to wait until after next week's trip down to Anchorage for the appointment with the Neurosurgeon Pro from Dover.  However, according to the gas tank meter we used 1/4 of a tank and the odometer reading was 150 miles.  That would indicate a 600 mile range on a single tank, which is astounding for a passenger vehicle.  It must have a whopping big gas tank.  I'm going to guess 40 gallons. (edit: I since got a reading on gas mileage for the van.  15 mpg average.  Not great, but a good deal better than my old Tioga Bugout Machine which got 7mpg on a good day going downhill.  As a result, I virtually never drove it.  I don't think I put 500 miles on it in 5 years of ownership of this vehicle.  I kept it as a one time emergency bugout machine).






I hung out around Talkeetna until around 8PM, but since it's still light out until after 1AM at this time of year.  Actually, it never gets truly dark around the Solstice here, you get a kind of twilight between the hours of around 1AM and 5AM.  Here is a picture from my back porch at 2AM as I write this article.






I elected to drive back home to the digs rather than sleep in the van. It's only around a 90 minute drive. The other option was to stay in one of the rental cabin places, but my cheapskate side didn't want to spend the money.  I did take a nap in the van however after lunch for about an hour.



I finally got on the road close to noon, because my final packing job of last minute items took longer than expected.  I kept thinking of additional items I wanted to have along for the ride, and I move so slow it took forever to load them.  Then getting on the Parks highway and leaving Wasilla there was construction being done where they are adding a second set of lanes and extending the divided highway.  Finally passing that though, it was open road and clear sailing the rest of the way.  It was a mostly sunny warm day with temps in the 70s F, although there were a few brief SUNā˜¼ showers while I was driving up there.  None once I got to Talkeetna though.






I took a break for lunch at the Sheep Inn, the first building I ran into on the drive that had that nice big log cabin look to it of traditional Mountain Lodges. Very Picturesque. It was quite empty however, although large with many tables both inside and outside.  No free wi-fi.  The beer list looked pretty good, I picked an IPA from a local brewery that was very good.  Looking at the menu though, it was singularly unimpressive.  A more stock list of Bar Food you couldn't imagine, about 4 different hamburger types, about 6 sandwiches, 12" Pizzas which were no doubt stock frozen ones, 1 soup of the day of Chicken Noodle.  I ordered a hamburger off the Kid's Menu which came out not even on a Bun, but on two slices of toast.  It was the cheapest thing on the menu at $7, and the meat patty was thin, dry and overcooked.  For $7, I can buy 3 Roast Beef & Cheese Sliders at Arby's each of which has more meat on it than this burger did and way tastier too.  No wonder there was nobody at the tables!






A CUSTOMER!  I had to get up from my table to shoot a picture of this shocking event at the height of Lunchtime at the Sheep Inn



Now, WTF spends $Millions$ on a building like this, then serves up this type of crap food?  Put a decent Chef (like ME!  ;D ) in that building, and you could have a world-renowned restaurant.  It's in the middle of nowhere, halfway between Wasilla and Talkeetna so no real local traffic, but in terms of touristas coming up for some summer fishing fun or to go hiking around Denali, it's at about the perfect spot where somebody arriving at Ted Stevens International Airport and renting a car to drive will hit around lunchtime, and then on the way home you could time it to stop for dinner.  Needless to say though, I took 3 bites of the hamburger consuming less than half of it and I will not be stopping at this joint again for anything other than a beer.



https://www.containerstore.com/catalogimages/151101/Pg_31%20Slim%20Folding%20Step%20Stool-2_x.jpg?width=1200&height=1200&align=center After this huge, delicious and filling meal   Roll Eyes   I was feeling kind of pooped and decided I would take my first nap in SaVannah's cabin.  Here I ran into my first major problem.  I couldn't make the step up at the side door to get in the cabin and onto the bed for my nap!  I couldn't find a place to purchase my (weak) arms to help my legs in making the step up.  Unlike the Driver's entrance, there is no halfway step installed there.  After returning home, I ordered a lightweight aluminum folding step-stool to resolve this problem in the future.  The shipping on it cost more than the stool.  $27 for the stool, $32 for the shipping.



I did finally make it into the bunk though.  I considered going in through the Driver's door and climbing to the back from there, except the Ewz blocked that path and there was no way to get any footing, really even if you were healthy with the current Ad Hoc system of packing SaVannah.  To be really efficient as a Stealth Van, the current interior will have to be removed and a custom interior put in.  If I do that, I will go to an Amish Cabinet Maker and have a custom job done to my design.  I have seen some Stealth Vans done this way and it can be positively beautiful if you find the right cabinet maker.  Same guys will also do custom boat interiors.



I was considering buying a camper-trailer for it that would be my actual living space, but on researching this the folks who sell these trailers on Craig's List think much too highly of them.  You can't find a decent used one for under around $6000 or so, and that's more than SaVannah cost and no engine in it either!  Any of them in REALLY good shape you are talking $10K.  That Dog won't Hunt.  Mainly I need the trailer to store all my STUFF, the Van itself is quite sufficient for me as a living space if it is not cluttered up with everything.  Good Cargo Trailers can be had for $2000.  I bought one for LD for his Landscaping Bizness while down in SC for the 2016 Convocation for $2000.



Anyhow, the way I finally did get into the bunk was through the rear doors, because there I was able to use the Bumper as an intermediary step, although even here was difficult because I still had nothing to really grab hold of to use my (weak) arms as helpers in getting my sorry, crippled ass into the the bunk.  With some snake belly crawling though, I managed it.  ::)



Once in the bunk and ready to grab my Power Nap, I realized how uncomfortably WARM it was inside SaVannah.  This with the exterior temperature only maybe 72F and partly cloudy.  Down in the lower 48 on an 80F sunny day, FUHGETTABOUDIT, without A/C SaVannah would be an OVEN unless at least well shaded and with all the doors wide open and a fan to blow air over your mostly naked body.  But of course, you can't do Stealth living if you have your doors wide open, you need to be closed up and locked down to look like the Van is unoccupied and just parked.  So I am looking into small, portable A/C powered air conditioners to cool the interior down to a tolerable temperature for sleeping, which for me is around 65F or below.  Problem here of course is that I will need a source of A/C to plug into, which limits the nightly parking during the warm weather months to legitimate for-pay campsites that have at least an electric plugin.  However, this would only be for half the year and is within my budget.



In this case, I resolved the problem by opening the front windows about 3", then opening all the sliding panels on the rear windows, and there was enough of a Breeze going that the air blew over me while I napped.  I took off my shirt so the moving air would evaporate any sweat straight off my skin and cool me.  I got about an hour's worth of nap time this way, which is typical now with the Itch From Hell  :evil4: anyhow.



After leaving the Sheep Dip Lodge, I headed on north to scope out the potential SUNā˜¼ Property I found on the net which seemed like a good possibility at the right price.  I will skip over this part for this article and cover this in part 4.  The travelog here is already turning into a fairly long article by itself, and there is a lot to cover in the property examination.



After finishing the Land Scoping portion of the trip, I headed for Downtown Talkeetna to grab some Pics and give the readers a better idea of what this town is like as the closest town to the potential SUNā˜¼stead.  Here I ran into my next two great challenges, first off getting the Ewz out of SaVannah, then the Call of Nature, basically simultaneously.






I knew where I would park in Talkeetna, at the very end of the Talkeetna Spur off the Parks Highway Right on the Susitna River is a Day Park (no camping allowed) with Picnic tables and Fire Rings, and you can set up your own BBQ as well.  I brought the gymmies up there a couple of times after State Championships for our Celebration BBQ for the season.



http://www.letsmakeadeal.com/lmad-curtain.GIF So I get out of the Driver's Seat and proceed to begin the next aspect of the Trucker's Life, the Unload.  Normally in my Trucking Years I paid Lumpers to do this for me rather than do it myself, but in the park at this time there were no lumpers, only a couple of old ladies playing Gin Rummy at one of the Picnic Tables.  About halfway through getting the Ewz out of SaVannah, I get the URGE!  I gotta POOP!  Now, the Public Toilet is about 100 yards from where I am parked.  I can either try to shuffle my way over there before I have an "accident", I can go inside the van and use my Shit Bucket, or I can try and finish getting the Ewz out of SaVannah, then jump on her bones to traverse the 100 yards in a few seconds.  I elect to go for Door #3 on this Let's Make a Deal.



I managed to succeed and did not shit my pants, thank God since that would have made the drive home quite uncomfortable, not to mention gross.  Once relieved of this problem, I took a short tour around Talkeetna to get some Flavor pics of the town, which is a "Historic" town now transformed into an Artsy Tourist Trap during the summer months.  Thing you have to remember is this town basically shuts down out of the tourist season, and in terms of full time residents up there, the census lists less than 1000.  They are also pretty spread out and there is nothing to buy or do for the whole winter, so most folks are just holed up if they live there year round.  Many do have winter hobbies such as Cross Country Skiing or Dogsledding of course, and there are Churches where I imagine the faithful gather together every Sunday, but overall there isn't too much to do with yourself there over the Winter.  More than anything else, this I think is what turns of Industrialized people to making an Off-Grid move to a place like this.  It's not even that far out really, it's not the Alaska Bush.  It's only 115 miles from downtown Anchorage, paved highway all the way.






The view up "Main Street" of Downtown Talkeetna at the height of the Tourista season






The Walmart of Talkeetna, the General Store where you can buy all your daily needs, if they are open and if they stock them when they are open



This wouldn't bother me at all though, because I basically spend all winter holed up in my digs anyhow, even though there are movie theatres and places to shop open all winter here in Palmer.  The only main difference for me is I would have to stock up more on preps, and instead of just having preps enough so I don't have to go out and do weekly shopping, I would need enough to carry me through a whole winter from the freeze and first snows until the spring melt.  Also necessary of course to keep my mind active and keep Cabin Fever from setting in would be an Internet Connection, and that would at the moment have to be done by 4G, although Satellite is a possibility.  Some of the biznesses did have free wi-fi, but password protected.



I was going to include in this article the scoping out of the potential SUNā˜¼stead Property, however this article turned out long enough just on the travel aspects, so I'll hold off on the specifics of the property analysis for a Part 4 of this series, currently tentatively titled Going on a Land Hunt.  Coming next week to a Laptop Near You for Sunday Brunch on the Doomstead Diner. šŸ™‚


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Going on a Land Hunt
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2017, 02:37:26 AM »


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Published on The Doomstead Diner July 2, 2017



 






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This is Part 4, the final installment of the Alaska Sustainability series.



Read Part 1, Part 2 & Part 3 at the Links.



In our last episode of this 4 part series on the Survivability and Sustainability of Alaska once TSHTF here in Collapse, I took a Road Trip up to Talkeetna in my new Stealth Van (now Christened with the name SaVannah) to have a look at a possible piece of property for the first SUNā˜¼stead.  Prior to that in Part 2, I looked at the property through the lens of Google Earth, which without actually going there and for FREE, you can get a pretty good fly over view of just about any patch of land on earth.  It's a great tool, and these days you wonder how anyone could search down a real good property without it?






As good as it is though, it's still no substitute for Boots on the Ground investigation of a property you might want to fork over your hard won FRNs for.  There's a lot more to consider than just the general geography and lay of the land you can discern from Googe Earth satellite views, they're not detailed enough to give you the actual terrain features, particularly not when obscured by tree cover.  In the .xml file you can find out more information on this, but it is still not that detailed.   Besides the terrain features which affect your ability to build on the land and the expense that will entail, you have issues of how deep the water table is for digging a well, and what the water quality is in the location.  Here in Alaska, there are many places where the ground water has high levels of Arsenic in it, occuring naturally even not from mining.  Not a good location to dig a well.



Then there is the brush and tree cover, how thick is it and what would it take to clear land either for domiciles or for some type of farming or ranching?  What is the topsoil like, could you directly grow Alaska Carrots & Potatoes in the soil, or will you need to build Raised Beds or do hydroponics or aquaculture to grow produce effectively?  Can you raise domesticated animals like pigs or chickens on this plot of land, and what are the needs of those animals for them to survive a frigid Alaska winter?  How big a barn will you need for them, and will you need to insulate and/or heat it through the coldest months?  Where will you get feed from if you can't grow it all yourself?



The biggest hurdle of all currently though and not available for review on Google Earth is PROPERTY LAW!  What does the deed actually state, how "unrestricted" is this land really?  What kind of domiciles will the county allow you to put up?  Can they be temporary and movable like Tiny Homes?  Is it OK to live in an RV-Bugout Machine on the property?  Is septic required or can you just use an outhouse or Humanure Composing system?  Could you drop down as far as Tents or Teepees to dwell on the property?



All these questions and more were in my mind as I headed up the Parks Highway in SaVannah, my recently purchased 1999 Ford V-8 conversion van to have a Boots on the Ground view of the property I had Googled up the prior week.  I passed the turn off onto the spur that leads to Talkeetna and continued up the Parks Highway, in the general direction of Denali National Park and then Fairbanks, another major piece down the road.  I crossed the Susitna river at one of its more narrow points where they dropped in a bridge, continuing up the road until I saw the signs for Trapper Creek.  As towns go, this one is even smaller with less to do even in summer than Talkeetna, which is right across the Susitna river on the other side, but "you can't get there from here", at least not with going back 15 miles to get to the bridge.  The river is too wide at this point for anything but a pretty expensive trestle bridge or suspension bridge, and there isn't traffic to justify that.  It's also far too deep and fast flowing to cross in a 4-wheeler also.



http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/frontiersman.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/5/b5/5b5ea550-4a46-11e1-82dc-001871e3ce6c/4f24ed980b95e.preview-300.jpg As I arrive at the general neighborhood of the property, I see that Trapper Creek is a runoff stream from the Susitna River, and as such will always have water flowing, at least until all the glaciers finally melt off which is going to take quite some time.  That is all the water you could ask for on a property, fresh and flowing rapidly and many sorts of micro hydro experiments could be done on it.  You could even dam it up, although that would be a big job on a stream of this size.   Not as big as the job of damming up the Susitna River herself of course, which would take the Army Corps of Bozos to pull off.  In fact there is a proposal to do just that upriver a ways, but it probably will not get built for a number of reasons.  First off, the financing of it is close to impossible, because it would cost $5B even on estimates, and you gotta know it would have cost overruns that would double that before it was finished.  The total population it would serve could never pay it off, and that is obvious even to the Magical Accounting people on Wall Street.  Then there are the Environmental and Tourista concerns.  It would play havoc with the salmon run on the Susitna, whether they build fish stairs or not for the fishies to keep swimming upstream past the dam.  It also would reduce flow downriver during the periods the reservoir was filling, mainly in the Spring and early Summer as the runoff comes down from Denali and the rest of the mountain range from the melt off of the winter snows.  Besides messing with salmon migrations, this also fucks with a main Tourista Draw for people who like to Canoe or Kayak during this time of year, when if you are going downstream you don't have to do much beyond steer your boat, the river current does all the real work.  You "float" the river, you don't really paddle it.  The Susitna isn't a full on Whitewater experience except if there is an exceptional rainfall so it is not good for rafting except in a few short stretches, but the water does move quite rapidly downstream and you'll easily cover 5 miles/hour floating it.  You'll be down in the Gulf of Alaska before you know it.



As a result of all these negative repurcussions, all the artsy Tourista biznesses in Talkeetna are dead set against it.  Just about every store or bar had a sign up or a flyer plastered on the wall of NO DAM!  Besides the probable destruction of their Tourist trade is the fact that Talkeetna is straight down river from the proposed site of the dam, and if/when it fails all of Talkeetna and anyone who lives within a mile or so of the current track of the Susitna river would be washed away in a nano-second.  The land around there is pretty flat, and if all that water came washing down at once it would spread out over quite a wide area before draining off.  I don't think the dam will be built though, so this is not a huge factor for me in calculating whether this land purchase for SUNā˜¼ would be a good one.



Getting back to Trapper Creek and Talkeetna, the only way to connect them directly that might be in any way economical would be with some kind of ferry system.  You could cross the river with a powerboat of course, if it has a decent enough engine to buck the current.  Another way would be a raft attached to cables strung across the river, for a "Missouri Boat Ride". lol.  I don't expect either of those options to be taken though, so after TSHTF to get from one half of the combined town to the other, you're stuck with riding your Ewz or Horse down to where the current bridge actually is, then back up again on the other side, as long as that bridge is up.  If you want to go home the same day, you better get an early start in the morning.






Nevertheless, for the SUNā˜¼stead I am not real concerned with being able to trek over to Talkeetna from Trapper Creek every day, maybe once a week during the summer for the Farmer's Market and some trading. The fact the property was right on Trapper Creek with 100' of frontage was enough to make my property acquisition juices start flowing though, despite the fact I am generally against the individual ownership of land property.  Philosophically speaking, since I was shopping for SUNā˜¼ and not myself, I was avoiding this moral dilemma and didn't feel any hypocrisy.  OK, maybe a little. lol.



Approaching the property, the first thing I noted was that it was heavily treed and as of now completely undeveloped.  Looking at the land platte and how it was sub-divided up, the 5 acres I was looking at were the third in from the road.  There was no way I was getting back in there on the Ewz, even a healthy guy on foot would have a hard time making it through all that brush.  So walking the property itself was out of the question, although I could tell it was all basically flat land, and once you did clear some trees it wouldn't be hard to put any kind of building on it at all, permanent or temporary.  No major earth moving to do to level the ground for a pad to build on.



However, the lack of any kind of road or trail in currently, plus the density of the tree growth on this patch of land means that for the moment, until the total property is developed (which includes about 6 5 acre properties and 4 10 acre ones) really can't be used for anything, including camping.  I couldn't drive SaVannah up to Talkeetna and spend the night sleeping in her bunk for instance on the SUNā˜¼ owned patch of the earth for instance.  I would have to park SaVannah on the roadside and hike my in on my crippled legs, set up a tent, etc.  If they would let you set up tents, but they won't do that.  The Deed Restrictions say you gotta plop a McMansion down on this property.  Will I buy this property for SUNā˜¼?  Obviously not, it's idiotic.  It's no better than a stupid ass property in the middle of suburbia in Inman, SC.  Just colder in the winter. lol.  It is a good deal cheaper than the stupid property in Inman though.



However, the placement of the property on the Susitna River continued to intrigue me even though I couldn't get on the property itself, and I pondered on it while driving back over to Talkeetna on the other side of the river to grab some photos.  I gave the Real Estate Agent a call and had her send me more of the documents on the property.



http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-XebeG8Kg2Rc/Tx7xRVbWCuI/AAAAAAAAADM/hj2hkWt37VE/s1600/ranch+style+house+1.jpg As it turns out, the property is NOT in fact "unrestricted", the only type of dwellings you are allowed to erect on it are 1 family houses, which I am sure have to be up to the standards of the local McMansion building and fire codes.  Even worse than that though is the fact there isn't even a trail as of yet back into where the property actually is, and you couldn't really cut your own either since it would pass through the two other properties that are between it and the county maintained road.  You would need an easement of some kind to do this, but there are already plans in place for a subdivision road to go through, just it hasn't been built yet.  Nor have any of the McMansions on any of the other plots been started, nor has any sewer or electric been put in.  What is going on here?



In all likelihood, maybe a decade or two back, some developer bought this whole tract of land which is probably 50-100 acres in size, with the intention of subdividing it into plots for Vacation Homes.  A couple of people bought plots but never built on them.  The original owner probably retains ownership the on plot that is right on the county road itself.  Even though there are currently no "Home Owners" here because there are no Homes, there IS a Home Owners Association! LOL.



Besides the only single home restriction (which is MAJOR), there don't appear to be any other major ones.  You can raise animals as long as they are properly penned in and you can have a garden or farm it if you can (which I doubt, the soil is piss poor).  Regardless, the single home restriction is a deal breaker.  At the beginning, the property would just be for me to camp on during the summers and do some experimenting with Hydroponics in a small dome, as well as holding convocations where everybody camps out in tents or RVs.  This is not going to fly with the HOA.



So here we are up on the Last Great Frontier in pretty much the middle of NOWHERE with nobody else around for at least a mile or so, and you can't do WTF you want with your own property, which you are paying fucking taxes on!  Do you think this is any better down in the Lower 48 in Suburbia?  Of course it's not, it's WORSE down there!  I am beginning to think there is NO SUCH THING as "unrestricted land", at least not any you can buy in small parcels.  This got me to thinking about how this whole system actually WORKS.



I can drive the length of the Glenn Highway (Hwy 1) or the Parks Highway (Hwy 3) and along both stretches of road there are MILES of completely unoccupied land, but NONE of it apparently for sale.  Who OWNS this land?  It's not National or State Park land.  Answer is it is mainly State or Federally owned and managed land, whatever "managing" means in this context.  They don't have people out there patrolling the property.



If you want to use or buy this land, you have to do it through Da Goobermint and they don't sell or lease it off in 10 acre parcels.  Probably not even in 100 acre parcels.  I bet that you need to be in the market for 1000 acres or more before you can negotiate for one of these tracts of land.  This completely takes out the Little Guy from land ownership at the origination level.  Only big ass Pigmen and Corporations can afford to buy such large tracts of land.



http://www.homeinvasionnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/HOA-Police.jpeg So the first Major Pigman buys a tract of land of say 10,000 acres with basically No Restrictions except maybe sticking to EPA rules on the environment (now being eviscerated by Trumpovetsky).  He sells off this land in 1000 acre parcels to some lesser Pigmen with only a few restrictions like where the roads and sewer pipes will go.  These guys sell off to various commercial and residential developers in 100 acre lots with a few more restrictions, like what that lot will be zoned for.  This lowest level Real Estate Pigman drops on the final set of restrictions on what can be built or done on J6Ps 5 or 10 acre plot, and establishes a Home Owners Association.



Based on this general analysis, I wonder if there is ANYWHERE in the FSoA SUN can buy the kind of truly unrestricted land we need to demonstrate Sustainable Living techniques?  Seems like you would need to be a Billionaire to pull it off.



Which brings me back around to the Talkeetna property.  If NOWHERE is going to have truly unrestricted property, then because the price is so good this might be a BUY anyhow, not to use now but on SHTF Day.  It's an "investment property".  The HOA can't do anything if we build nothing at all on it. After SHTF Day, HOA's will be meaningless.  Who will enforce the restrictions?



The only thing against this for me is the current lack of access of even a trail to get back there, and no clue whatsoever as to when they figure to cut an access road in.  I'll talk to the Real Estate agent about that next week.



Overall to date, the Landhunt for property for SUNā˜¼ has been quite frustrating.  For myself at this point I prefer the idea of not owning any land at all and just living the Nomadic Existence of the OTR Trucker, which I am thoroughly familiar with.  Just it would be a lot better since I wouldn't have any asshole shippers, receivers, dispatchers, safety officers or lumpers to deal with.  Also with a Van rather than a fucking huge Freightliner tractor and 53' of trailer I wouldn't be relegated to Truckstops and Rest Areas every night.  National & State Parks, Private Campgrounds, Walmart Parking lots and Bates Motels without Truck Parking, all open season for SaVannah, my Stealth Van.  The World is my Oyster!  On SHTF Day, I take my last tank of gas and drive it hopefully to one of my Diner friend's Doomsteads with all my preps on board and see just how long I last.  Or I could punch my Ticket to the Great Beyond and drive SaVannah off a cliff.  We'll go out of the Age of Oil together, in a Blaze of Glory.


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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2017, 08:16:37 AM »
Quote
The original owner probably retains ownership the on plot that is right on the county road itself.  Even though there are currently no "Home Owners" here because there are no Homes, there IS a Home Owners Association!

This is really remarkable. No one in sight, but there's STILL a HOA.

No appetite anywhere to allow people to live in a way where they can't be mined for profit.
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Offline luciddreams

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2017, 08:35:58 AM »
There is no escaping BAU.  It's literally legislated into existence by Bureaucracy.  Nobody wants anybody to go off-grid and homeschool their children.  This threatens the bureaucrats existence and makes J6P feel as though something is wrong with his way of life.  It's sort of like the social phenomenon you deal with when you go vegetarian or vegan, or if you are LBGTQ.  When your way of life challenges BAU it causes a rift in the Matrix.  Every contributor to the Matrix then does their part to get you back in line. 

There are a few places you can go off-grid in the U.S.  Summertown TN is one of those places.  I think that's mostly due to the Farm and their long standing influence on the local government there.  Basically there is no way to legally be free.  To go off-grid and do what SUN wants to do is to break the law. 
« Last Edit: July 02, 2017, 08:38:01 AM by luciddreams »

Offline Eddie

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2017, 09:38:53 AM »
A HOA is not necessarily the end of the line. In order for the deed restrictions to be enforced the HOA has to be able to serve notice of violations, and then, in order for the rules to have teeth, the HOA has to sue to enforce them.

 It might be worth finding out who owns the property, and how likely they are to muster the juice to crack down on the only person interested in building on what is obviously a less than desirable piece of dirt a long way from anybody.

 I am in violation of my HOA at the stead over the pigs (the max is two, I have 12). However, my HOA has NO MONEY and there is no consensus to crack down on what is basically an invisible violation that hurts no one. In the country, you can get away with a lot if you just keep a low profile and neighbors have no reason to complain.

HOA's are created by the developers and then taken over by the homeowners when a certain amount of property has been sold.  If the original developers went belly up, whoever owns the property (like if it's a bank) will have no interest in running the HOA and will want to hand it off to the homeowners at the earliest possible time. Deed restrictions and by-laws can be amended with a majority vote in most cases. I'd find out who owns the land before I blew the whole thing off.

« Last Edit: July 02, 2017, 09:52:33 AM by Eddie »
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline K-Dog

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2017, 10:47:06 AM »
A HOA is not necessarily the end of the line. In order for the deed restrictions to be enforced the HOA has to be able to serve notice of violations, and then, in order for the rules to have teeth, the HOA has to sue to enforce them.

 It might be worth finding out who owns the property, and how likely they are to muster the juice to crack down on the only person interested in building on what is obviously a less than desirable piece of dirt a long way from anybody.

 I am in violation of my HOA at the stead over the pigs (the max is two, I have 12). However, my HOA has NO MONEY and there is no consensus to crack down on what is basically an invisible violation that hurts no one. In the country, you can get away with a lot if you just keep a low profile and neighbors have no reason to complain.

HOA's are created by the developers and then taken over by the homeowners when a certain amount of property has been sold.  If the original developers went belly up, whoever owns the property (like if it's a bank) will have no interest in running the HOA and will want to hand it off to the homeowners at the earliest possible time. Deed restrictions and by-laws can be amended with a majority vote in most cases. I'd find out who owns the land before I blew the whole thing off.

Move in as the only homeowner making sure that the HOA is transfered to you.  so you can be president, vice president, and treasurer all at the same time. 

Then call a meeting, show up and vote the HOA out of existence.

Once at least 10 people moved in you would never be able to get rid of an HOA.  Then some evil bastard will always want that little sliver of power and they will get proxies from all the people who don't give a shit about actually being involved in the HOA and rule like Marshal Stalin.  Then their sick little circle jerk of busybodies will go on forever.  But if you are the whole HOA you could get rid of it!

Offline vwclown

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2017, 11:34:33 AM »
HA!  Great idea, K-Dog!  I like the idea of a one-person HOA with RE as president!  There are three people in our HOA, plus an empty lot.  Mostly, it's 'the county' that likes to share bright ideas and enforce them.  We had to have someone pour a concrete "apron" to connect the gravel road to the main road because...  I really don't know why, except that they said so.  We did.  Hope we did it right.  It looks like a freakin' freeway off-ramp!  Easier to find at night I guess.  Also, rural mailbox height is important, as we found out from the mail carrier.  Otherwise, nice neighbors who are helpful and nobody seems to really be nosing around....  As far as we know. - vwclown

Offline RE

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« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2017, 03:14:23 PM »
A HOA is not necessarily the end of the line. In order for the deed restrictions to be enforced the HOA has to be able to serve notice of violations, and then, in order for the rules to have teeth, the HOA has to sue to enforce them.

 It might be worth finding out who owns the property, and how likely they are to muster the juice to crack down on the only person interested in building on what is obviously a less than desirable piece of dirt a long way from anybody.

 I am in violation of my HOA at the stead over the pigs (the max is two, I have 12). However, my HOA has NO MONEY and there is no consensus to crack down on what is basically an invisible violation that hurts no one. In the country, you can get away with a lot if you just keep a low profile and neighbors have no reason to complain.

HOA's are created by the developers and then taken over by the homeowners when a certain amount of property has been sold.  If the original developers went belly up, whoever owns the property (like if it's a bank) will have no interest in running the HOA and will want to hand it off to the homeowners at the earliest possible time. Deed restrictions and by-laws can be amended with a majority vote in most cases. I'd find out who owns the land before I blew the whole thing off.

I had the Real Estate Agent contact the President of the HOA and explain to her that we are a Non-Profit foundation with a mission of developing sustainable living systems and see if we could get a waiver for the restriction.  She in turn emailed other members of the HOA (I don't know how many there are in it currently), and the answer that came back was no, no waiver.

As I mentioned, this was obviously part of a larger property which was then sub-divided to about a dozen plots to build Vacation Homes on.  The HOA must consist of whoever bought these parcels of land to build on, but hasn't ever built on it yet (for good reason).  They WANT this restriction, because that's the type of neighborhood they want to live in.  They don't want somebody building a multi-family apartments for Section 8 Housing; they don't want an Old Doomer living in a 1999 Vintage Van; and they DEFINITELY don't want a bunch of Doomers building Primitive Shelters out of local materials like the dude on the Primitive Skills Utoob channel.

Why has nobody built anything yet?  Because they haven't cut an access road in yet!  The only properties in the subdivision you can currently access are the two which sit on the county road.  For all the rest of them, you have to cross over one of these two plots of land.  The municipality of Trapper Creek is supposed to put in the road, but the President of the HOA has no idea when they will be doing that.  That is why the land is coming in so cheap right now ($2000/acre).  If/when the municipality does put the access road in, the price of those plots of land will skyrocket, so people who bought took a risk on the road in being built to get the cheap price.  Like most local municipalities though, Trapper Creek is broke, they probably have trouble maintaining the roads already built around the town and have no money to build a new one, not even a dirt or gravel road.  So if the current land holders ever want to make use of their properties, they are going to have to pony up the money for that themselves.  That doesn't look like it is happening too soon either.

So even without the restriction and the HOA, the property is currently useless for SUN☼.  I can't get in there to camp on it, and we definitely could not hold a convocation there since the brush and trees are overall too dense and there is nowhere really to put up tents.  You would need to cut out campsites.  Even if you did that though, there is nowhere to park except on the shoulder of the county road, and you couldn't currently get back in there even on a 4 wheeler.

It's really a shame, because the property is as close to perfect as you could ask for.  Low population zone but enough around for a nice size community with a farmers market, running stream, well treed for building materials and firewood, reasonably flat for building on.  I have the Real Estate Agent looking for other properties for me, and she sends me 1 or 2 every week, but they all have something physical wrong with them, even before considering deed restrictions and HOAs.  For instance she sent me one in a Lake area just up past Glacier View.  Looks great on Google Earth and I almost drove up to look at it, and called to make a reservation at a local hotel/resort.  In chatting with the manager about renting a 4 wheeler to go see it, he told me that in summer the area gets pretty muddy and it's very slow going to get around there even in a 4 wheeler and even though there isn't dense underbrush.  It's about 6 miles in off the Glenn Highway and can take you 2 hours just to traverse that much land, and then there are still no real stores around to buy supplies.  The folks who live in that area supply up in the winter once the land freezes up and has a snow cover, then they travel around via Snow Machine.  Then it only takes 15 minutes to traverse the 6 miles off road to get to your cabin.  However, for Convocation-Workshop purposes, they would mostly be held during the Tourista Season of May-Sept.  Nobody is going to come to a Sustainability Workshop in Alaska in mid-winter. lol.  So this property is also no-go.

There are an almost infinite number of "Perfect Properties" though out there in Alaska, the problem though with almost all of them is the only way to get there is via Float Plane.  Just the stuff I have in SaVannah for my current camping trip would take at least 2 plane trips in to get there, and that doesn't even include tools or solar panels or more batts or any building materials you might want to use to build anything but a primitive shelter.  That shit would probably have to be air-dropped from a larger plane.

So, for now unless the agent miraculously finds another good property WITH road access (at least a dirt road) AND without restrictions on building codes or SUN☼ miraculously finds a Deep Pocket Sugar Daddy who will Donate $1M or so to buy one I don't see physical property ownership of a patch of land for SUN☼ happening any time too soon.  So right now I am concentrating on the Federally and State managed lands around here which are designated as "Public Access", and there are a lot of them.  You can go park on these lands and camp out for FREE:icon_sunny:  I look for spots to park SaVannah that have all the right attributes nearby, and when SHTF Day comes, you pick one of them to go and SQUAT on permanently.  Why pay for it when Da Goobermint is Going Out of Bizness and the Dollar will be WORTHLESS and "Titles" and "Deeds" issued out by the now defunct Goobermint will be worth even less than the Dollars are worth? ???

The current campsite I am staying at fits almost all the bills, and it's not well known.  I will not reveal where it is located. It is TOP SECRET information.  It's not free, but the charge is nominal for the primitive sites, ($15/night).  Currently over the July 4th Holiday Weekend I would say it is only about half full up of campers celebrating Independence Incarceration Day.  On normal weekends, maybe 1/4 of the spots are filled.  On the normal weekdays, fuhgettaboudit.  MAYBE 10% of the sites are taken.  If I book a month in advance, I could book the whole fucking place on my budget for a week.  lol.  It would be a great place to hold a Convocation up here in Alaska.  So I currently am planning to do just that, and have Convocation 2018 here in Alaska for 1 week sometime between May-Sept of 2018.  Put in your votes for the best Month/Week to hold the Last Great Frontier Diner/SUN☼ Convocation 2018 in this thread.  Featured will be Group Trips to the (melting) Knik Glacier, Whale Watching in Prince William Sound, Fishing during the Salmon Run on the Kenai River (if it is in July) and Hiking in Denali National Park.  All Extras are a la carte, but if enough Diners choose an extra, I will negotiate for a group rate.  I can get a Fishing Boat to go out for Halibut at a GREAT price if I can get 15 people to lease the boat.

You can go from Spartan to Luxurious for accomodations depending on your budget and prediliction.  On the Spartan level, you can arrive in Alaska at Ted Stevens International Airport with just a backpack and your own tent & sleeping bag.  You don't need a drivers license or to rent a car.  You will be picked up at & returned to the Airport by the SUN☼ Van Service, free of charge.  If you go Luxury, you could rent a 30' Big Ass Diesel Pusher with Slide Outs RV and go for electric hookup ($70 for the week extra charge).  You can opt anywhere between these choices, a rental car with your own tent(s) in a Primitive site would be the most common choice I think.  All Food will be provided at the campsite as part of your registration fee.  Food bought offsite for yourself is your responsibility.

I currently estimate basic Registration Fee @ $300 for the week, so with a typical plane fare from the Lower 48 of around $700 these days, your weekend Alaska SUN☼ Workshop will run you about $1000.  If you are coming from the Pacific Northwest, a good deal less than that, I have booked plane fares as low as $300 R/T from Seattle.  If enough people are interested, I will see what Pros I can get to come and do workshops.  This would up the cost some to provide an Honorarium to the Pro Presenter.  However, even without a Famous Name, I think the Diners can do good presentations on things like Permaculture, 12V Electrics, Community Building, etc.

Registrations are FULL FAMILY registrations.  That means Wife & Kids all included in the registration fee.  I just need to know how many will be in your party so I can properly calculate the food requirements.  There are Flush toilets on site, as well as Showers that cost $2.  Playground for the kids, and great bike trails for them to ride around exploring.

See You at the Last Great Frontier Diner/SUN☼ Convocation 2018  :icon_sunny:

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Offline azozeo

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2017, 05:35:47 PM »
Sounds groovy....
I vote for May or Sept.
I opt out if it's on one of the legal holidays, to many touristas & the airfares get jacked up a bit.
Oh, let the sun beat down upon my face
And stars fill my dream
I’m a traveler of both time and space
To be where I have been
To sit with elders of the gentle race
This world has seldom seen
They talk of days for which they sit and wait
All will be revealed

Offline RE

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Re: Alaska: Is it Sustainable after TSHTF?
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2017, 07:07:22 PM »
Sounds groovy....
I vote for May or Sept.
I opt out if it's on one of the legal holidays, to many touristas & the airfares get jacked up a bit.

I am leaning toward the week of the Summer Solstice, which falls on June 21.  So I will bracket the week and go from Sat June 16 to Sun June 24, with the main Seminars being held M-F June 18-22.


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