Category Archives: The Cabin


There is still a little snow on the ground and it drops below freezing at night, but it sure feels like spring. 44 outside now.

The outhouse survived winter.

So did the solar panel. I’ll be connecting the other panel soon for extra summer power.

And Lily is finding all kinds of things under the snow.

And I put up my Pithole Hermit sign.

Now both panels are chugging out current.

Preparations for Spring

It’s not even the end of January, but it’s not to early to plan and prepare for Spring projects.  I’ll leave this as an open post where I will list my ideas as they come to me.

The first things I am already working on.  Carvings and statues to decorate the trees entering the homestead.  Something similar to these items, only hand made.


A New Member of the Pack

But first, today is the fourth anniversary of the previous pack member’s death.  Frisbee never got to see the Pithole Homestead.  She was a good dog.  In her memory.

Frisbee 1999-2013
Frisbee catching treats at Christmas

Now, Introducing a new member to the Pithole Pack.


She is from the Venango County Humane Society.  They say she is 1 year old and named Lily.  I have considered changing her name but she already knows it.  Also when I say Lily real fast a bunch of times, like yodeling, she gets excited.  She’s a Labrador Retriever mix, just as Frisbee was.

Here’s a few videos

Silly Lily and the Woods

Silly Lily and the Woods Chapter 2

Silly Lily and the Mirror

Silly Lily and the Mirror Chapter 2

Silly Lily and the Rope

Window Dressing

  • Today I did a little dressing up of the inside window frames on the cabin. This is what they looked like unfinished.

Although they were framed and didn’t leak they weren’t very pretty. So I made use of the 1 x 4s I had left from when I took the shelving out of the original shed. A little measuring, cutting, routing and painting and this is the result.

Much nicer.

The Two Bears


Two curious bruins were exploring the homestead this morning. One looked in the the window and said “somebody has been sleeping in my bed”.

After reviewing the video I believe what I thought were two yearling cubs was really a mother and her yearling.  The bear who stayed back in the woods appears a bit larger than the one who came to the door.

The Cabin’s Evolution – nearly a years journey

    The Basic Shed
Getting ready to install windows. Interior is still just an uninsulated frame.
Front and one side window installed
Second side windows installed
Added house wrap. At this time the interior has also been insulated and drywalled.
Starting the front porch
Front porch deck
Deck covered. Also note the windowed door installed.
Fully wrapped. Chimney installed.
Painted over the house wrap. I know, you’re not supposed to do that, but the white wrap was annoying.
Porch roof getting close.
Porch roof complete
Starting to install cedar shakes on sides and porch roof

The interior also evolved.

The composting outhouse is also developing.

Not really a composting outhouse.  This basically an outhouse with a removable holding tank.  The outhouse is designed to moved forward on skids after the back panel is removed.  This allows the storage tank to be removed for composting and a new tank put in place.

The storage tank is just a 55 gallon blue poly drum.  It is partially buried but can easily be pulled out.

The outhouse has been built but is not in use.  I am not sure of the township and state legal requirements so I am currently using a portable camping toilet.  I hope to replace the tank on the outhouse with an incinerating toilet which I’m sure is legal and does not need inspection.  Composting toilet are also legal in Pennsylvania but most likely require inspection.  The blue tank does not even have a hole in it yet.  But it looks cool.  When I permanently move here I will take care of residence legal requirements.  At this time the cabin is actually still just a fancy shed.

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