City-dwellers have been idealizing remote cabin life since well before Thoreau penned Walden, but our current hyper-connected, productivity-obsessed lifestyles have made the quest for calm feel especially pertinent. It’s the contradicting truth of our time: the more ways we have to connect, the more desperate we are to go off the grid.
That’s how Zach Klein, former co-founder of Vimeo, felt when he traveled from New York City to explore upstate New York a few years back. He ended up putting down roots in a wild and wooded area called Beaver Brook, building a cabin and camp that he still runs with a group of friends, then setting up the popular Tumblr Cabin Porn to document the cabins that served as their own inspiration. Five years and 10 million unique visitors later, and Klein has published a gorgeous, full color book by the same name, out this month from Little Brown.
“I needed a remote piece of land where anything was possible,” Klein writes the book’s introduction. “I’d spent six years in the city building online communities and now I wanted to build one offline. Specifically, a place for a bunch of friends to be outdoors, somewhere we could be less preoccupied by our professions and more reliant on each other as we practice new skills together.”
Cabin Porn offers exactly what the title suggests: a trove of gorgeous photos worthy of salivating over. But it also aims to be both a reference and source of inspiration for people considering building their own cozy dwelling in the great outdoors. Featuring an off-grid bunkhouse in Maine, a converted grain silo in Missouri and an Idaho tree house with pedal-powered bike elevator, the book provides an ample supply of ideas to get started on.
As Klein puts it, “Taking the leap from fantasy to reality isn’t difficult; it begins by looking around for a little inspiration.” We’ve taken the liberty of choosing the 15 cabins we found most inspiring from Klein’s book. Check them out in the gallery above, and head over here to buy a copy of Cabin Porn.