Couple lives in a remote self-built watchtower in the forest

Rural area

“I never thought that, as an urban gay man, I would live in an extremely rural area like this,” Dabney says about the unique location in the forest. “We can’t imagine living the way we once lived,” adds Alan.

The ground floor

Alan and Dabney’s house looks impressive. The house stands on high ‘legs’ and has two floors. On the first floor is the living area, and there is a balcony around the whole floor. The men get their power from solar panels and they have regular access to the internet. Downstairs there is a water tank and a solar pump that pumps the water up to the living area, and the house is heated by a heater that runs on propane. In addition, the kitchen is fully equipped. “The fact that you live in a remote area does not mean that you have to eat bad food,” the men say.

The upper floor

On the second floor of Alan and Dabney’s lookout is their bedroom with a beautiful view over the forest. “I call it my kingdom, to wake up here in the morning when the sun is just starting to shine. You can look out in front of you for miles and you can hear the birds singing in the morning,” says Dabney.

The toilet

At first sight, the tower looks like a nice house, but a certain important luxury is missing in the house: the toilet. So, the men built a small toilet cubicle in the woods near their tower, and they also came up with another option; the so-called ‘pee funnel’. “We realized that this is very much aimed at men, so when female guests come, we also have a special area for them.” The men can’t shower indoors either, they do so on their balcony. They don’t have a drain for the shower water: the water seeps down through the wooden floor.


Alan and Dabney spend the whole year in their tower. So, it also happens that they sit there when it is not sunny outside. “When snow starts falling and there is a blizzard, the snow hits the windows and you can’t see anything anymore. It’s cozy here then, but we’re stuck,” says Alan.

Leaving the tower

Alan and Dabney have been together for 25 years and enjoy their lives in their tower. However, they do realize that they cannot spend their old age here. “One day we have to move back to the city. One day we won’t be able to walk up all those stairs. We sometimes wonder when that day will come, but I will forever cherish the memories of this house in which we live”.

Wondering what the tower looks like inside? Then watch the video.

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Also read: Architect transforms castle ruins into a beautiful house

Source: Truly | Image: Videostill YouTube Truly