; SHACKS OF THE SHIRE
(Clockwise from top)
Rabinovitch’s remote pampas
grass hut, complete with 175-
watt solar panel, enough for
his lights and laptop. Saxon
and Meara O’Reilly’s tiny cedar
house, modeled in SketchUp
and handmade with love. The
community kitchen features
an igloo-shaped cob oven the
Gulchers built out of earth,
chunks of broken concrete,
and cement. Hellfritsch stokes
the fire for dinner.
made the Vizard before 3D monitors were
Like so many of the objects in Trout
Gulch, the Vizard was the fruit of online
instructions — in this case posted by video
game enthusiasts. They also built a 3D
camera rig, but it mostly gathers dust
these days because their animation work
is now done digitally.
Jon Kalish (top, bottom left)
At the moment there are several small
outbuildings at Trout Gulch, including a
tool shop, guest room, an old trailer, a
hoophouse for starting plants, and goat
paddocks. The compound has outdoor
showers and a composting toilet with two
“thrones” side by side.
Encyclopedia Pictura’s web intern,
Rob Wilson, who can sometimes be seen
carrying his pet turtle, Torta, around the
grounds, sleeps in a tree house that’s 24
feet off the ground. Hellfritsch and Saxon
live in tiny houses not far from the kitchen.
But Rabinovitch’s “crib” is off the beaten
track a bit.
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