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~Building a Log Cabin in Alaska~

One night in the spring of 2004, probably at 2am, Aaron and I were sitting at the computer, each drinking a beer, and looking for land in Alaska. We couldn't believe it when we found a piece that wasn't only affordable....VERY affordable, but was in our favorite area of Alaska. We bought our five acre parcel of land and started dreaming up what we were going to do on it. We told our folks we were going to build a cabin; I think my parents didn't believe me and thought I was a little crazy! Aaron and I were so excited we just started cutting trees, branches, anything....oh the feeling of owning your own piece of land! Over the course of five months Aaron and I drove every single weekend five hours to our land and gradually a cabin came together. Aaron's brother, Adam, joined us for 2.5 months; we'd never have done it without his help! Please take your time on these pages, click on the pictures to see the bigger view, and enjoy the building process of a log cabin by two people who have never built much of anything before! The links above will take you through each process of the building. Originally all the photos were on one page, but that was like 300 pictures, so I split the building process up into six pages.
 

Preparing the Land

After buying five acres of land in Alaska, we started preparing the land for this vision of a cabin we had. We used all our own logs from the land for the walls.  It was quite a process cutting them down and peeling each by hand. 

 

The Log Walls

We really had no idea what we were doing. We had a book about building a log home in Alaska that showed some variations of notches.  We decided to use the round notch.  Each log we scribed to try and get a fit as tight as possible.  This wasn't easy with the crooked logs we had to use.  With each log placed, our cabin slowly took form.

The Gables, Roof, and Windows

With winter quickly closing in on us, we hurried along to get our cabin closed from the outside elements. The first night we spent inside our drafting cabin was luxurious.  We had a stove to keep her warm, but lots of trim work to do around the windows and ceiling to keep the winds out. 

Alaska Log Cabin in Winter

We could get the temperature inside up in the 70s, while outside it was well below zero.  We had high hopes of spending Christmas at our cabin, but a nasty storm dashed our plans.   Lots of work to do inside yet. We spent the cold days building a log table, finishing up some rock work around the stove, and drinking coffee.

Log Spiral Stairs

Building stairs to the loft was a work of creativity.  We didn't like the first design, but are quite pleased with the second.  Spent the early spring finishing up more details inside and putting window covers on to discourage the bears from trying to find a way in the cabin.

The Cabinets & Porch

Some finishing touches for the outside with a porch and stairs.  Makes it much easier to get inside and out!  Also finished up our kitchen area in the cabin.  River rock for a counter top is interesting.  Spent a day sealing the logs with Wood Guard, and prepared the cabin for visitors.

Log Cabin Living 2006

We moved to our cabin for about three months during the late summer and fall of 2006.  We had to say the goodbye (temporarily) to the cabin as we were moving back to Montana.  I think I could live at the cabin for a year or two and really enjoy it.  It's fun trying to learn new tricks when it comes to every day living in the woods without the comforts we are used to.

Return to our Cabin 2008

At last we are back in Alaska, and this time for good. The cabin is in great shape; almost exactly as we left it. 

 
 
 
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This site was last updated 03/21/14