Tiny House on the Big Island: 2nd Edition

Tiny House on the Big Island: 2nd Edition


Checking out the Hilo side of the Island (my side)

Checking out the Hilo side of the Island (my side)

Day 5: we went into Hilo mostly so I could get some computer stuff done with wifi. My phone (sprint) barely works out here and internet even with the hotspot isn’t even an option. My folks and I went out to the property and started chopping down a path again but it’s not quick work.

I’ve called a few different people off craigslist to come clear it with chainsaws but no one was too eager to work on New Years or Ew Years Eve. So fingers crossed for tomorrow.

We took the rest of the day to see some sights. Not very productive but fun.

Botanical Garden & Coastline

Botanical Garden & Coastline

Day 6: We looked at a truck to buy today a 93′ Dodge Dakota for $1000. We did a little test drive and I’m going to buy it tomorrow when the title is there.  We didn’t go to the property today but we did go to a few lumber stores and price things, along with some other running around.

My mom and I are similar in that we enjoy projects my dad on the other hand does not. He is here for two weeks and says it’s his job to make sure we have some fun so we went to the Hawaii Botanical Gardens which is spectacular. I’ve been here nearly a week and I don’t think I’ve mentioned how absolutely beautiful Hawaii is. Maybe because it’s a give in. Things seem so abundant here. Plants grow instantly. Many leaves bigger than me. I start each day with an hour walk around the neighborhood as the sun comes up. I’m still shocked how even the temperature day after day – being from Idaho I’m not sure I will ever get over that.

93' Dodge Dakota

93′ Dodge Dakota

Day 7: We got the truck for $800. That’s over my usual $500 maximum on the main land but I plan to recoup the money and sell it when I leave. There’s a spot just a couple miles along the road that people park their cars for sale. No one owns it they just do it.

Since I still haven’t got a call back from anyone on clearing the jungle, I decided it was time for me to buy a chainsaw. I know they can be very dangerous so I bought the smallest gas powered one I thought I could handle.

We made it out to my property by the afternoon and started chopping it up. My dad used it mostly but I tried it out too so I know how to when he leaves.

We got a few logs cut up into manageable pieces and downed a few trees before we left.

clearing a spot on my lot for the treehouse.

clearing a spot on my lot for the treehouse.

Day 8: We got fairly early start today chopping down more trees. We made a pretty decent 30’x30′ clearing. Along with a huge debris pile.

My little Hawaiian neighbor of Philippine decent came over and helped just for fun. He’s pretty funny he plays music in the yard to keep the pigs from rooting up the yard.

The YV trees (that’s how they’re pronounced I have no idea how they’re spelled) even when chopped will continue to grow. We’re going to stack them on the property line to make a natural fence eventually.

In the evening we had dinner with one of my dad’s cousins who lives about a mile from where we are staying. Her husband is a builder and gave us some helpful advice on the build.

Visiting Kona for the day. People put rice in the salt to absorb the moisture in the air so the salt doesn't clump

Visiting Kona for the day. People put rice in the salt to absorb the moisture in the air so the salt doesn’t clump.

Day 9: Since we can’t do a whole lot on the property till it gets cleared we decided to take a day trip to Kona on the other side of the island.

Kona is the more touristy side of the island it has some beautiful beaches and its not nearly as rainy. But I gotta say I do like the Hilo side better maybe I’m biased 😉

Day 10: This morning I was stoked to go meet the guy with the bobcat. I was worried that he might not be able to do much but he didn’t think there should be any problems. He says it should take 4-5 hours (I’ll plan on 5-5) at $85 an hour, to scrap the road, push a couple junk cars further into the jungle that are on my road, knock down about a 3 foot ledge in our ‘entryway’, level out the clearing, dig a septic hole, and move the debris off my lot.

Unfortunately he can’t come till next weekend! So time to plan and see as much as possible to keep busy

7 Responses to Tiny House on the Big Island: 2nd Edition

  1. SteveBussell says:

    Congratulations! It looks like you’re making some progress. I am looking forward to reading what you encounter along the way.
    Ma halo! SteveB.

  2. Matthew Olds says:

    Hey just discovered your blog. Looking forward to see how things develop for you in the jungle! You have a one acre lot? I’ve got a 450sqft house that I live in here in Boise but want a super tiny one out in Puna soooo bad. I love it there :)

    • kristiewp says:

      My lot is about 1/3 an acre on a dead end road that butts up to state property. There is so many inexpensive lots here it’s crazy!

      I’m loving this area too, I really lucked out since I bought it before I had ever visited the island.

  3. Matthew Olds says:

    Yeah the land prices in Puna are absurdly cheap! I like the lower elevation lots best because of the types of fruit trees you can grow and the proximity to Pahoa but they are generally governed by CC&Rs that restrict tiny houses. It looks like yours is in Fern Forest or Eden Roc or somewhere like that which is perfect for a tiny house enthusiast because you can live in whatever the hell you want up there

  4. Brenna says:

    Aloha Kristie! Your project is so inspiring! You have an amazing eye for design, and it’s obvious you are having fun creating your vision. I live on Kona side, but absolutely love puna side for all it’s wildness. I have so many questions for you about your project. I’m curious how you did your septic as I assume the whole thing is without permits. Also, how do you heat the house? Whenever I stay in Volcano I find it downright cold! Most places have wood stoves. Anyways, if you’re back on the island and want to do a house swap for a night or two, I live in Captain Cook near Kealakekua Bay. All the best!

  5. John Shippen says:

    Sounds fun. I got 3/4 acre last time I was there and want to put a tiny house on it. Ha ha
    I was there last Sept.

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