Want to become a skilled carpenter? Well this is likely not the way to do it. Ex software engineer and nature geek Joel Allen attempted to retire at the ripe age of 26 but woke up to the harsh reality that it wasn’t going to happen. Instead of returning to coding, he decided to try something new and began crafting an “egg in a tree” tree house.
Now aside from the incredible craftsmanship this tree house displays, this is only one part of the story. In fact, there are quite a few amazing elements that have brought this effort together.
First, Allen had no real skills as a carpenter. He accredits “blind naiveté and supreme determination” for his ability to design and build this incredible tree house. Clearly he learned a thing or two along the way.
Secondly, he was broke. He salvaged all the materials needed by trolling craigslist and scooping up any building materials that he could for free. The estimated cost of materials at the design phase was $10k, but he was able to build this almost entirely out of donated discarded building supplies and materials.
The last part is the bittersweet reality of this project. Allen built this wonder on Crown Lands in British Columbia, Canada – government owned forestry. Now that his well hidden secret is being shared across the internet, it will very likely be removed by the government.
My childish idealism wants me to cheer this guy on and fight for his right to keep his oasis in the trees, but the harsh reality of the situation is one of legal responsibility. If they allow the Hemloft to remain, then the government becomes responsible for its safety and upkeep. This would set a precedent that would allow anyone to build and maintain a property on government lands. It also has to become usable by the public, meaning any hiker could come along and squat in it for a night. This would no longer be Allen’s own little hideaway.
It is an impressive project and one that deserves attention; however it is that same attention that is likely to have this nifty tree house removed.
I have been looking at building something modular like this as a private mancave in my yard (without the tree) for a while now, and perhaps this is just the inspiration I needed! Perhaps they will allow him to keep it after removing it from the tree.
The full story of the HemLoft can be found here.