--LIFE Operation Empty Nest


planomateo

Ready to put Tejas in the rear view, hello Montana
ADMINISTRATION
HARRY'S
#1
We've bought a house up in Montana just outside of Missoula this week. We'll be saying goodbye to Texas in a few years once our youngest graduates high school. Until then we'll be making trips to visit when we can.

The house is a small 2 bedroom house with a detached garage/shop that sits on 20 acres. The property sits next to state land and all the plots around us are 20 acre properties. It's completely off the grid powered primarily by solar power and propane generator as the backup.

I've never lived in the snow, although I've visited Montana many many times in the winter. Believe we should expect about 40-60" of snow a year. Perhaps @alabama mike, @bamaledge, or @PhillyGirl can give me some pointers :D.

Deer, moose, elk on the property frequently. Bighorn sheep in the area. Great fly fishing ~5 miles away.

Looking forward to the next adventure, getting to explore a state I fell in love with 20+ years ago.

Necessary items to purchase:
fly fishing gear, UTV/ATV, cold weather gear, snowblower, snowplow, tractor

You can't tell from the picture, but there are 3800' hills both south and west of the property.

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alabama mike

Probably At A Ballgame
#2
@planomateo Beautiful photo! I am sure @Bamabww and @doemasters will love the scenery.

Here is my advice:
1. Don't eat yellow snow or brown snow. (this is very important) :dance:
2. You can drive on snow a lot better than sleet. The main thing is to slow down. They will have folks that plow the main roads for you.
3. Invest in a tractor with a snow blade or have a truck with a blade on it. From the looks of your picture, you are going to need something to get to a main road.
4. Have a snow blower for around the front porch area and a path to the garage.
5.. If the weather folks are predicting 12 inches of snow or less, don't sweat it. Nothing is going to close, stores will still have bread, milk and eggs. Life is normal.

I have a friend that lives there. He works at the hospital in radiology and is an Alabama fan. His wife works as a nurse. They both grew up in NW Alabama. When you go out, shoot me a message and I will try to hook y'all up.
 

planomateo

Ready to put Tejas in the rear view, hello Montana
ADMINISTRATION
HARRY'S
#3
Thanks Mike!

The driveway is about 1/4 mile long and the dirt road out to the main road is about 5 miles. Most of the neighbors have plows, so I'll get someone to help the first year, then will pull the trigger on one for myself.

The wife and I both drive Toyota Land Cruisers (full time 4 wheel drive) we'll be fine on the drive :) Not to mention she grew up in Montana.
 

It Takes Eleven

Quoth the Raven...
HARRY'S
#6
@It Takes Eleven, 20 miles outside of Missoula and yes on well water.
Sorry to pepper you with questions, but an off-grid cabin is my final goal in terms of land ownership. Is the solar array partially visible beyond the workshop the only one you have/need, and does the well system have a pressurized tank or some other mechanism to provide water in the event of power loss? Thanks.
 

planomateo

Ready to put Tejas in the rear view, hello Montana
ADMINISTRATION
HARRY'S
#7
12 older panels, I've been talking with a few solar companies about potential upgrades. The amount of information and time they are willing to spend with me over the phone is amazing. Great community it seems.

I have 1000 gallon propane tank and a generator as secondary power, it kicks on based on power draw. Well feeds a 1200 gallon cistern and there is a pressurized tank that has a couple hundred gallons. Key is not having big draws at the same time.

I'll be purchasing a small backup generator as the 3rd backup.

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planomateo

Ready to put Tejas in the rear view, hello Montana
ADMINISTRATION
HARRY'S
#9
We're both pretty excited and ready to leave the congestion of North Dallas.

When we moved here back in 2002 the county population was about 500,000 in Collin County. Today it's about 1.2 million with predictions of 2 million by 2030 and 4 million by 2050 (surpassing both Dallas and Tarrant counties).
 

Bamabww

Bench Warmer
HARRY'S
#12
I’m glad it worked out for you and your wife. Best of luck. I want you to get good at fly fishing. I’ve always wanted to do that and when the wife and I visit, I’ll be ready for lessons !
 

planomateo

Ready to put Tejas in the rear view, hello Montana
ADMINISTRATION
HARRY'S
#15
@alabama mike, opted not to make the drive south daily down into the Bitterroot Valley, we're east of Missoula.

Our stipulation was close to a major city, somewhere on the Western side of the state (Helena, Bozeman, Missoula, Kalispell), small house, shop, 10+ acres, off-grid if possible, and privacy.

Bitterroot Valley depending on where you live is a long drive into Missoula. You can bet we'll be going out to Lolo to the hot springs regularly.
 

bamaledge

Vigilate, et audax
HARRY'S
#16
What @alabama mike said is as accurate as I could be. Just remember, you cannot drive on on and the people with their 4 wheel drives think they can go anywhere on anything. I have seen more 4 wheel drives in the ditch than front wheel drives. Snow is not bad but be careful and patient. Have fun, looks awesome. You’ll have to have us all out to camp and watch s game!!! Can’t wait!!!
 

Bamabww

Bench Warmer
HARRY'S
#20
How does spending the week there feel? Different I’m sure but still a place you and the wife can make home?

The wife and I are happy for this oppprtunity for you.
 

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