You'll want to watch this video that takes you to a beautiful remote property hidden away deep in the Baton Valley, nestled amongst the imposing mountain ranges of the Kahurangi National Park. The tiny, off-grid cabin looks as though it could have sat there for hundreds of years. The cabin called the Honeywell hut is a tribute to its builder Jack Honeywell, this historic-looking cabin is the pride and joy of its owners Richard and Fiona, who constructed this unique get-away as an escape for themselves, as well as to help provide additional accommodation for their horse trekking business.
Even today, the Baton Valley is as remote as it is beautiful. An 8-mile single-lane road is the only access to the valley. Baton Run is Richard and Fiona’s farm. The farm has been in Richards's family for three generations since it was purchased by his grandfather in 1906. Today, it’s still a working sheep and beef farm, but much of the land has been planted in regenerating forests. The Baton River flows through the farm, bringing pristine water into the valley from the Kahurangi National park. It’s along the shores of this river, where the Honeywell Hut has been constructed. Originally built from an old changing room shed which the couple purchased for $2,000 and had transported onto the property from Nelson, the hut has now been converted into a stunning off-grid cabin.
Although the wood cabin was only constructed 8 years ago, it looks as though it could have sat on the land for a hundred years. Many of the timbers which were used in its construction were found on the property, already weathered by many storms, their history, and character being imprinted on the cabin. There are no services here. No access to water or power, and so this wood cabin sits off the grid, collecting water and generating power from a small solar system that sits on the roof, the only real touch of the modern world to be seen. The cabin has a wraparound deck complete with rocking chairs which tempt you to slow down, take the time to sit, relax and watch the world go by with the gentle sound of the batten river flowing and echoing throughout the valley. The rusted corrugate awning brilliantly juxtaposed against the solar panels gives a sense of history and remoteness but with a slight hint of the most basic modern comforts.
On the rear side of the cabin is the outdoor toilet as well as a shower and bathtub with water warmed by a small wood-burning stove. In some places, it would seem extreme to have all these facilities located outside, but here it makes perfect sense and encourages a greater connection with the outside world and the cabin’s panoramic views. Alone in the valley, a hot shower or bath under the stars is soul cleansing. The rustic charm is continued in the interior of the cabin as well. The wood, mostly macrocarpa, almost all comes from the Baton Valley and helps to make the place feel cozy.
More about this story can be found at: Living Big In A Tiny House