Visiting Earthships

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July 15th 2020
Published: July 17th 2020
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blog 07-15-20 Earthship

Today was the day I headed out of town to investigate the Visitor Center. Michael Reynolds, with a degree in architecture, built his first house out of can bricks in Taos in 1972. After years trying other building materials and off-grid systems, he went on to build the first Earthship in 1988.

The homes are built with recycled tires that are filled with dirt and sand and stacked like a brick wall. Bottles are added to add light and color and then a coating of adobe over top. Simplistic explanation.

The water is attained by catching rain water on the roof and running it into cisterns buried in the berm. It is filtered and used in sinks and showers then runs to the watering system for the indoor plants. The plants filter the water and it is then used to flush the toilets. The waste runs to a septic tank where the water is then used to water the outside plants. Again a simple explanation.

The power comes from wind and solar panels, most of which are mounted on the roof then stored in batteries inside.

There are currently over 70 Earthships in the Taos community, some built by the community members, some by Earthship Biotecture. The homes are completely self-sufficient. They are built into the ground with one side facing south to capture the maximum sun in winter and escaping the direct sun in summer. There is very little heating or cooling required as the in ground temperature is a constant 56.

I wanted to build an in-ground house 40 yrs ago, glad somebody finally did it. If you want to investigate further go to

Watson and I had a leisurely afternoon, then about 8:20pm we headed out to see the comet. It has been visible for a few days now but I haven't had the luck to see it. The weather has been cloudy every night blocking it's view. I did find a spot and was able to spot it with my binoculars. I was shocked how big it was, it took up the whole field of view! I scrambled to get my camera and find it again but by that time the clouds had moved in again and blocked my view. SO disappointed but thrilled to have seen it at all. I'll try again tomorrow.

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