Tiny House on the Big Island: 1st edition

Tiny House on the Big Island: 1st edition

Great to be out of the snow and into the sun.

Great to be out of the snow and into the sun.

Day 1: My parents and I spent all day traveling to Hawaii. We had 7 hours to kill in Honolulu before we took an island jumper to the big island.

Every rental car was already booked, and Greg (the friend of a friend who we are renting from) offered to pick us up when I told him we were going to grab a cab. The house that we we’re suppose to rent isn’t ready quite yet so we are staying in my electrician friend from my days at Simplot Dana’s dad’s house until it’s ready.

We had really long chat with Greg after he showed us the house. I feel like I learned a lot already – he has built a lot of houses on the island and back in Idaho.

Day 2: Today we woke up and toured Greg’s property where we’re staying and his house. Asking a lot of questions on plants and building along the way. He is a wealth of information claiming he has made every mistake in life.

We then bribed him with breakfast which we got at the hippie filled Sunday Market. He took us through the mango forest, past a nude beach, out to where the lava flow took over the road. We picked up 3 hitchhikers along the way. They sat in the truck bed and knocked on the window when they wanted out.

The waste land that is the lava flow looked like something from an apocalyptic movie with tiny shelters and some nicer houses sprinkled across the black span of lava. Apparently you can buy land there for a steal and I can see why. The upside is it is very close to the ocean.

It was only 2:00 when we returned and we all could have definitely could have gone for a nap, our internal clock is still off from the time change. But the sun would be going down in just a few hours so we rallied and went to see my property – finally!

The location is close to the highway which was really easy to get to. We found the clearing just like I saw on Google Earth. As I started to climb up the small incline I realized it wasn’t an incline but rather the foliage was as tall as me! Making my way through it I started to feel a little unstable and slowed my pace. I advanced with my dad following behind me. I took another step and sank – into water – to my upper thigh. Luckily I was just on the bank and still holding on to the tall grass and was able to pull myself up. Not what I expected.

The “clearing/lake” is large and there’s no telling how much water is there or how deep. I also don’t know what side of the clearing is mine – hopefully a dry side.

We then went to Walmart to buy some groceries but the shelves we half bare, very bizarre in America. We tried another grocer down the road and stocked up spending nearly double as we would in Idaho.

We cooked lasagna and at 8:00 and were dead tired. My brain felt swollen from all the new information that  I was trying to soak in.

Day 3: It poured rain all through the night and didn’t stop until about 10:00. The storm knocked out the power so we didn’t have the a very productive morning. We sat on the lanai and my mom braided my hair.

I tried to hire a pin finder (someone to find property lines) but luckily I couldn’t get one out today. After spending hours with crappy wifi trying to find the plat map to see if I was on that lake/swamp/lagoon thing. I finally just walked into a realtor office and in not more than a couple minutes she gave us a printed map of my subdivision.

On the map the ‘road’ goes quite a bit further than you can see in real life. I knew my lot was at the dead in but the road is so overgrown we couldn’t see it.

The four of us tramped down the waist high grass and found our way to some old fence posts that marked the far side of my lot. After quite a bit of searching we were able to find the pins for the plat across the street and subsequently mine as well. There were a lot of wild pig tracks and some small well worn trails that they have made but we also ran into some pig traps as well.

We spent the next couple hours driving around the nearby city of Volcano and went to see the National Park as well with the steam rising out of it and everything.

We returned at dusk as the rain picked back up and I enjoyed a nice, dark, wet walk.

Day 4: Today is my Dads 63 Birthday (Happy Birthday Dad) as well as New Years Eve (Happy New Year Everyone). We went to Hilo and took our first look at what Home Depot has to offer on the big island. We bought some big pruning shears and knife and headed to the property to see what we could clear.

The jungle is so dense you have to cut your way through it. It’s completely opposite landscape from the dry dessert plot I have in Idaho. We hacked through it for a couple hours trying to decide where we will actually build. There is a huge fallen tree on the lot and I think that might be the best spot but we couldn’t make it that far through all the muck.¬†

We had a little planning pow wow back at the rental home. Each taking turns drawing plans on graph paper and discussing different material options. I’m getting antsy, I’m ready to start building but we have to tackle the jungle first.

5 Responses to Tiny House on the Big Island: 1st edition

  1. Lana says:

    So excited to see your tiny vacation home come to fruition!! xoxo

  2. jcs721 says:

    Looks like a real adventure. Wield the sword (or pruning shears) and defeat that jungle. Although I think the jungle always wins in the end….Cool to see an update after last reading this blog two years ago.

  3. So do you have any dry land?

  4. Hubby and I are planning to do the same thing. Wanting to move to Big Island, not sure though if we should go there to visit and get land first or save our money and just move over and get land once we are there. How did you do yours? Bought without seeing in person?? How is your place now?? Still there and Loving it I hope.

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