Learn what it takes to build a sustainable community

Sustainable Building & Community Workshops

Yurts at Poncha Pass - Colorado Yurt Rentals and Sustainable Building Workshops - team from the first workshop
Come stay in the heart of the Rockies for two weeks learning. Stay on site in one of our fully equipped yurts along with 8 other students.
Sustainable Building Workshop in Colorado - accredited by western colorado university - logo

Accredited and able to earn 1 credit through Western Colorado University with completion of workshop

Building

From building a carbon-negative yurt or earthship, gray water systems & off-grid power, to permitting and financial literacy.

Schedule

This intensive work trade educational workshop is typically two weeks.

Accommodations

Each yurt has a hot shower, flush toilet, and kitchen. Starlink Wifi, outdoor wood-burning sauna, natural cold plunge & fire pit.

What You’ll Learn

Come stay in the heart of the Rockies for two weeks learning to build an Earthship inspired home and what it takes to build sustainable community. From hands on building of a carbon negative home, to learning how to build a yurt, you’ll see what grey water systems look like, how permitting works, things to look for while planning, financial literacy, time banking, & community development. These are a few things among many more we will discuss during a two-week intensive work trade educational workshop.

These mornings will be largely be spent pounding earth into tires, framing walls, and building adobe bricks. This is tiring work and acts as our daily crossfit/exercise/moving the sustainable needle forward. The morning effort you bring to this project is your part in realizing affordable sustainable housing at Poncha Pass for this community. In return, each afternoon will see one lecture series based on a round table discussion of all things I’ve learned along the way. My hope is that you take many vital lessons with you, and the best parts of what I have learned to be applied to your own life, home, and community.

Accommodations

Each yurt has a hot shower, flush toilet, and kitchen. Up to three people will be housed in each yurt during their stay, each on a queen size bed drawing straws for the loft, Murphy bed or futon, (Please bring your own linen). Males & females will be separated unless friends or couples come together and wish to be placed with each other. Registration is a first come basis. Students will be responsible for their own meals and cooking. Hopefully we will have multiple group meals during our time together. This modern “work exchange” of time for education will see us work each morning on building a fully off grid, carbon negative Earthship inspired home.

Week 1 Schedule

Sunday Welcome

3-6pm welcome – 6pm welcome in big yurt & things to know

Monday-Friday 9AM-12:30, on-site at Earthship: build location building earthship

Monday Post lunch lecture – The story of building yurts (nuggets of gold; those key pieces of information that make the difference.)
Afternoon tiny tasks

Tuesday Post lunch Walk about – Choosing maintenance over repair, grafting trees & recovering grey water

Walking Tour of property

Wednesday Post lunch lecture – What is an Earthship & how can we design smartly

Afternoon tiny tasks

Thursday Post lunch lecture – Financial literacy. Starting a small business and achieving one’s own build

Building a composting toilet

Friday Post lunch lecture – What is sustainability? (A story on arriving at small scale housing)

Afternoon tiny tasks
Optional Evening out on the Town

Week 2 Schedule

Sunday – Optional trip to town / Sand Dunes

Monday-Friday 9AM-12:30, on-site at Earthship: build location building earthship

Monday Post lunch lecture – What is time banking? (leveraging your self worth & community worth towards common goals.)
Afternoon planting trees

Tuesday Post lunch lecture – Planning your efforts (Permitting & building a business plan)

Afternoon tiny tasks

Wednesday Post lunch lecture – Building affordable furniture & appliances

Afternoon building a composting toilet

Thursday Post lunch lecture – Sharing nuggets of gold, 10 minute student presentations

Afternoon tiny tasks

Friday Post lunch lecture – Sharing nuggets of gold, 10 minute student presentations

Afternoon final BBQ

What They’re Saying

“Chris, the owner, is a wonderful human with a wealth of knowledge he is willing to share.”

“The workshop was a lot of fun. We worked for a few hours a day, in which I learned many new skills such as working with power tools, staining, and pounding tires.”

“In the afternoons we had informative lectures with plenty of space to pick Chris’s brain on all our questions regarding off-grid building, etc.”

“Evenings were full of fun things like hot springs, saunas, and live music! I highly recommend joining a workshop if you are interested!”