Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Going Off Grid: Lessons from Survivorman

I am always looking for more ways to educate myself on self sufficiency. Seems like the more time I spend at work, the more I think about how to stop working. Is that weird?

I was pleasantly shocked tonight to stumble across a mini-series of videos made by Les Stroud from Survivorman fame. The first series called Survivorman Off The Grid Movie documents how Les took his time scouting out wilderness in Canada and ended up claiming his own 150 acres of paradise for "half the price" of a house in the suburbs.

Episode by episode he shows how he uses solar and wind for his hydro (Canadian term for power?). He renovates an old cabin and builds a new one next to it. From what looks to be an almost two year project, he finally ends up with a cozy cabin in the woods where he will live with his wife and two children. They homeschool and are completely free from the grid. Les earns income from his tv work and a music band.

I can't believe I didn't find this 2009 series until today. While he does talk about building a paradise on little money, he does seem to have a little more than the average Joe...considering he used a helicopter in one clip to fly his cabin wood into his remote area. To each his own. At least he's not dependent on anyone else for his electricity, food or childrens' education.

Note: I also found an older series called Snowshoes and Solitude where he and his wife lived "primatively" immediately after being married. They spent one full year in a remote area with primative hand tools.


  1. I think they seperated in 2008 (from 2nd wife). I don't think he exactly stays in the cabin much as he has a lot of projects going atm (band, film, etc.)

    Love what he did though. The whole concept appeals to a wide range for a variety of reasons.. some like the challenge, some crave the solitude, some desire the peace, some like to dream about doing what he does. Educational, entertaining, inspiring.

  2. Your post spurred me to look up the divorce. It took a little digging but seems you are indeed correct. How sad. They seemed such a great pair with such similar interests.


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