The electricity reaching Tatla Communities is at the end of the longest unsupported power line in North America.
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While most residences and businesses are serviced by BC Hydro, some are running on independent sources of power using solar, wind, and hydro technology to live off the grid. Here, we visit off-grid residences in Chilko, Tatlayoko and West Branch.
hausi wittwer at chilko river lodge
Chilko River Lodge is a true wilderness experience. Hausi runs the guest lodge from a combination of solar and generator power. His 5 cabins and the main lodge have wood heat and use minimal electricity, keeping the focus on all the wildlife just outside the door.
Parks Hill in the Tatlayoko Valley has seen some new residents move in over the past few years. Though each new build is different from the next, they're all completely off the grid.
Karin and Marc Satre
Karin and Marc's photovoltaics generate the power needed to run their home, mechanic shop, and ranch in the Tatlayoko Valley. They also have enough power to watch every single Broncos game on a flat screen TV!
the thompson family
Pure sunshine supports a modern home and lifestyle for Bryn and Lisa and their three boys. There are three main systems - the passive solar design of the house, solar photovoltaics, and solar hydronic hot water heat. Energy saving values, coupled with high efficiency appliances allows them to live and work close to nature.
Angela and Daryl
Angela and Daryl use solar string and globe lights to light their outbuildings, root cellar and paths around their cabin in Tatlayoko. Inside, a combination of candles and LED bulbs provide sufficient lighting year round. They have a basic photovoltaic and battery system to power their computers and camera equipment and run a wifi broadband connection.
The Kings' Power
The Kings have implemented an independent energy supply to run their homes and businesses in West Branch. Using a hydro electric power system, they are able to generate 24 kilowatts of electricity when running at full capacity. Power lines distribute the energy throughout their family property, providing the power to run White Saddle Air Service, White Saddle Country Inn, and their residences, year round.