Polebridge, MT: In the Beginning

Here it is, the beginning of December, and it looks like we just might get the yurt fully furnished by January. What we thought would be a simple project has turned into what we jokingly refer to as the million-dollar yurt.

After weeks of dealing with a very methodical builder and his crew of four, we soon found out that we could have just as easily built a cabin for the same amount of time and money. But, as Chris says, a yurt is much more interesting.

And just what is a yurt? Well, it’s an ancient structure used by central Asian nomads, particularly Mongolians. Its round shape and sloped roof create tension and compression that make it a very sturdy, yet portable, shelter. Although our updated, super-insulated, snow-bearing yurt package from Pacific Yurts is not exactly portable, it is light on the environment and blends in with the surrounding landscape.

As Jeff, our solar system consultant, told us (he once lived in a tipi in the North Fork back in the 1970s), “The great thing about living in a structure like this is that you begin to feel like you’re a part of nature, not separate from it. You hear everything–the wind, the rain, the animals. You feel like you’re outdoors.”

We shall soon see. Stay tuned.

The yurt kit and crew arrive at the site before sunrise

Unlike traditional yurts, ours has a foundation to make it level

The skeleton is erected

The interior

The “skin” has to be warmed and tightened before the windows can be cut

Our view to the north

Yes, there will be snow … lots and lots of snow

Which is why we’re getting this

And we’ll be dressed like this. Greetings from Montana!

Categories: Montana


  1. What!!!! I stay away from church for a few months and now you’re living in Montana in a Yurt! Holy cow, girl. I can’t wait to read more.


  2. The tables have turned. Now I will be living vicariously through you. xo


  3. Hi Monica,
    I love yur yurt! Do you plan on spending the winter hunkered down in this yurt?
    Uhhhh…how do I ask this delicately….where’s the bathroom?
    Have any bear introduced themselves yet?
    Stay bundled up!


    • Hi Mike! Ah, yes, the bathroom. We will have a Sun-Mar composting toilet that claims to be odorless (we shall see) and will create wonderful compost. Probably can’t use it for the vegetable garden, but we can spread it around the meadow, where we plan to spread many wildflower seeds. Hope you and the fam are doing well. Stay in touch! P.S. We’ve seen plenty of bear tracks but no face-to-face encounters on the actual parcel of land … yet.


  4. How exciting & adventurous!!!! I can’t wait to read more!!!!


  5. I still can’t believe you are out there in the wilderness! Looking forward to updates…stay warm!


  6. Love the pictures! Call or email me when you can – we have an update on something you are looking for in Chicago : )


  7. Hi Monica! Pegi Harmon sent your blog my way, and I’m so excited to get started reading it. I’m off for the summer, so your life adventures will be my main summer read. Can’t wait! & I miss you 😊


    • Hi Kyla! Nice to hear from you. I was just thinking of Pegi the other day. We’re in Morocco right now and I packed one of her beautiful scarves to wear. Hope you’re doing well and glad you found the blog!😊


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