Friday, February 17, 2017

Destiny Receives $20,000 Development Donation

Great News!!! A generous Destiny faerie has donated $20,000 to the No Place Like Home development fund. This directed donation is requested by the donor for building the workshop. The workshop has been discussed for a few years on Land Use and the Design Comet. This article is a distillation of those previous discussions.

The location of the current white, plastic Shit Shed was the original placement for the workshop. With clearing trees in Noisy Bottoms, the focus has shifted in the development site. It makes sense to place the workshop directly on the road. Future plans include timberframing the dining hall and cabins. This space would importantly need to be on the road for ease of timber unloading. The current considered location is on the corner near the propane tank. The Shit Shed site will be the sauna. 

The workshop functions include a 20x30 insulated, wood-heated space for machinery and tool storage. It would have enough open space for at least two faeries to carve timbers. There will be a workbench. Given it is heated one could sleep in there.

The Circle opted to start work on the dining hall as a next project a few years ago. Funding for that project has yet to be secured. Fund-raising for the solar electric system, a cost of $34,000, took five years to achieve. Two years ago the business circle agreed to pursue a loan to commence the dining hall construction as soon as possible. Destiny’s monthly income through monthly electronic funds transfers (EFT) has decreased from $1,100 a month down to $500. At this time, that isn’t enough to secure monthly loan repayment. Work to secure financing for the dining hall will continue this summer. Ultimately, increasing the EFT payments back up to $1,000 monthly would allow for loan acquisition.

The Design Comet is reinvigorating now that the funding for the workshop is secured. Next, the Comet will begin meeting to discuss the design of the workshop, the type of design—timberframe vs. stickframe—and facilitation of the design process.

Previously consented, the Design Comet is “closed” after the step-on time. The Design Comet’s mission is to design the development site and its structures.  Comet proposals include methods of financing. Teams from the Comet operationalize the proposal to complete the project. It is requested you participate for two years. 

Step on for the Design Comet will occur at the Annual Meeting April 14-16. Daisy Shaver is facilitating the Comet at this time. If you are interested to step-on, facilitate the Comet, design the workshop, please e-mail  At the meeting the group listserve will be created.  

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Wintertime Access

This is the area of the drive just below Tom's entrance to Triple M Ranch.

Destiny shares our drive with our neighbor, Triple M Ranch. Tom has been a neighbor since Destiny began both on this drive and on a different property on the other side of our mountain. He has been looking in on our place since the very beginning. He has always been supportive and wants to have fae living at the Sanctuary during the winter too. 
Destiny is spectacularly beautiful in the winter.  The views around the kitchen are expansive since the leaves are all off the trees

Our neighbor, Tom, lives at his place all winter. He keeps the drive open to his place and sands when it gets icy. He believes he can keep the road open up to the kitchen. He believes we could drive in and out all winter.

This Google Earth screen shot shows the Destiny entrance off 103 at the pink arrow at the top of the page. The road in the upper left between the pink arrows is Sylvan Road/Eastman Road which sits at the bottom of Destiny's property at Hall Brook. The pink circle is the kitchen development site. One can see the sketching of a road within the trees down to the entrance at 103. Triple M Ranch, on our drive, is the small clearing near the upper pink arrow near 103.

Destiny is 166 acres of predominantly steep, North-facing property in Southern Vermont. Most of the property was once cleared and home to sheep and cattle that belonged to the Peck Farm which sits across 103. The main entrance is an improved logging road that enters off VT Route 103 South. The drive is nearly a mile long and progresses up steeply for the first half, flattens some, and then moves on the rise again but not so steeply to the kitchen. The drive traverses nearly the three-fourths of the property.

Destiny had no cleared areas in 1997. The original logging road passed through the Yurt/Giza area and onto L'Nai 95 and into the camping and septic area. The current road from the Yurt to the kitchen did not exist. The parking lot did not exist. At the first gatherings, faeries parked on the upward slope of the drive and hiked in. The original kitchen site, K1, was set up just prior to the Yurt yard on the downhill side where it's flat. It is also a swale and filled up with water during the first rain of the first gathering. 

The first Destiny projects were improving the logging road up to the parking lot area and to the yurt and cutting out the parking lot. This started in 1998.

This is a Google Earth screen shot of the kitchen. To the left one can see Eastman Road. When you compare the distance to Eastman Road from the kitchen, you see just how close we sit to that road.
In the early years of Destiny's development, many faeries did not want to cut ANY trees. After the current kitchen site was selected, it took nearly two years to agree to cut the trees for the current road from the Yurt to the kitchen. When faeries wanted to build the Yurt, it took many hours of Heart Circle to come to agreement to cut some trees down. The same for the Giza. Moss did nearly all the cutting at the Yurt yard and on the road up to the kitchen. He worked to design the road in order to cut the fewest trees possible. 

When the faeries purchased Destiny, the neighbors on the back parcel dug a well right in the middle of the exit route. They contested our deed which was missing a few pages that made clear the exit was for residential, commercial or agricultural. Since these pages were located last year, we can begin a process of negotiating the back exit. Currently, the exit goes right through the neighbor's property. We'll negotiate to maintain this exit or build a new one which would require a bridge over Hall Brook. 

Since cash has not been at the ready, Land Use has not approached the current owners of that property to discuss our development plans. A surveyor came two years ago and felt that the deed and current markers made it very plain that we have a right-of-way. 

This screenshot shows the kitchen site and the rear exit out the property. This is a deeded exit but was contested when the previous owners lived there. Portions of the deed were missing with the township but were found in 2015.  So Destiny has the documents to use this deeded right-of-way which is shorter, and not so steep. 

Destiny houses many deer. The back drive runs through thick hemlock groves. Much of our land is set aside in "current use." Current Use is a tax incentive program to not develop forest land. It allows for forestry management but not logging, commerce or development. Development and use of the road will impact these deer and deer yards. Destiny has been taking actions to mitigate the harm on the deer with our development so far. Further deer  mitigation may be required when we keep either the front road open or develop the back road. I suspect Destiny will be able to easily meet its development goals since we are developing so of the 166-acres. 

At this time, Destiny does not have ready cash to hire surveyors or consultants to move forward with design and implementation of the road plan. We will need some infrastructure and development money and consultants to continue to move forward.