What's it Like to Live on a Hill?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Tango, Mar 9, 2005.

  1. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    I am looking at some land which is almost all on a hill except for five acres at the top of level ground. It is accessible year round. What is it like to live on a hill? I'm from Florida mind you. Have lived at sea level most of my life. What are the special considerations? Has anyone regretted buying on a hill? Is it good for my horse? I know my goats will like it.
     
  2. GoldenMom

    GoldenMom Well-Known Member

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    It's WINDY! I'd never lived on a hill until our current homestead and I am still amazed at the amount of wind we get. Can't wait until the little pine trees are grown enough to block some of it. Nice thing is there's less likelihood of standing water/water in the basement if you're higher than the surrounding areas. I doubt if it will hurt your horse at all. Maybe be a little harder to fence since it will be at an angle. Good luck in finding your dream place!
     

  3. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    You should get a windmill GoldenMom :) Don't know how much wind I'll experience; the southeast is mostly all rated 1 for wind speed but it is wooded so that might serve as a block like you say. Thanks :)
     
  4. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    You have a connection! :cool:

    A hill will be windy, but, you can build your house into the hill so that one level walks you out the bottom, and the upper level walks you to the top. At one time we were going to build on rolling ground, and this is what we were going to do. Clever use of trees can help with the wind.
     
  5. Breezie

    Breezie Active Member

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    All my property is a hill. I suppose around a 40 degree slope. It's kind of frustrating, and you have to do a lot of digging and levelling in every project. You have drainage issues ALWAYS. It is difficult to mow and hard to walk up-I swear I'm going to have calf muscles of steel. I don't know what livestock you could have other than goats. I wouldn't doom cattle or horses to this place. It would just be too cruel, as much as I would like to have a pony. Also, last but not least, we have shorter amounts of daylight because of the side of the hill we are on. I haven't seen a sunset on my property, as the sun goes down here about 1.5 hours before the true sunset.

    But, even though there are a lot of initial frustrations and adjustments to living, I still wouldn't move from this place if you paid me cash money. We just have to get creative when we want to do projects on the property. Land is land, and this is mine and I love it. :D
     
  6. tobo6

    tobo6 Well-Known Member

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    Our property is on a hill (outsiders say we live on a mountain, but we don't, lol)

    The hardest thing is navigating the driveway since we live way in the back of the property which is at the top of the hill. It's fixable if we pave (snort, chuckle, not happening!) or add more gravel. We have only been here two years, and we have added some gravel but a lot of it get's washed away when the creek floods in the winter.

    Every outbuilding, barn, house, ect. had to be leveled which is a expense. Walking the property can get tiresome, and pushing a wheelbarrow up hill is not fun. Quads help a lot, lol. When it rains you get water flowing down the driveway making ruts and it doesn't take much rain to do damage.

    We live in a old growth forest area, so the tree's are gigantic. The wind is amazing and then you freak out when the tree's start swaying and creaking.

    That was all the bad things...

    The things that I love, and the reason we live here. We have total privacy, no one can see us from the road. There is nothing like being at the top and looking out on your property. For how scary the wind can be, it also is so exciting and we are often found sitting outside enjoying the sights and sounds in a big wind.
    Landscaping on a slope is fun to me, you can make some interesting things, people say it's like a park here with the many paths that wind down the hill.

    As for animals we have chickens, geese, rabbits, pigs, turkey's and they do fine. We try and pick out the area's that accomadate them the best, so there is no set pattern on our farm. We do have flat land behind the house that will later accomadate larger livestock.

    Deb
     
  7. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    I"ve lived on the hill. I don't know if it's related to the fact that origins of my name refer to 'person living on a hill' . :haha: but it probably suits me.
    It's windy, that's one thing. But it's also safe from any low lying flooding if you lived in a valley. Heavy rains have hit on more than one occasion that makes me glad not to be down below further.
    It drains, so the gardens do well, but in drought periods you need to have provisions for watering.
    The other asthetic benefit is lookiing out onto the horizon or forest areas is nice. The sky seems closer, so night stargazing is incredible.
    Guess I'm a 'hill' of a person.

    Rich
     
  8. bergere

    bergere Just living Life

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    I live on a Hill like Deb, just not as far up.

    There is not a level spot on the place,, no steep slopes, but kind of rolling+.
    Makes it hard to put up a level foundation for a shed or such,, but buy some 1/4- gravel, and that will deal with that problem.
    You will tend to get more frosty days, a bit more wind.

    I have mini horses, one mini donkey,, getting Chickens again this April.
    Just so long as it is not a super steep slope, most animals can handle it.
    If fact it is good excerise for them. :D

    I am another perosn that loves the hills.
     
  9. lisarichards

    lisarichards Well-Known Member

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    We're on a hill, and have sheep, who do fine on the slope. (You can even see them on the sheepcam. Having a walk-out basement gives the house three levels, two of them on ground level, which is nice.
     
  10. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

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    We had choice of on the hill or down in the holler.

    One advantage of being on the hill is,wind stirs up cold air,less chance of frost.

    Disadvantage wind,around here durring the Summer its 20 degrees cooler in the holler,we have fires around here,it is harder to control them from top of the hill,water is futher away at to of the hill,better soil in the holler.

    But we still built top of the hill :confused:

    big rockpile
     
  11. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It's very, very windy here on my hill. I had both my front door and back door replaced last summer, and I still woke up to snow on the livingroom floor this morning, 'cause the wind has been relentless for the past 24 hours. Gusts around 50 miles per hour, over and over and over.............my glasses tinkle together in the cabinets!!

    This happens year round. Good news is I don't need air conditioning :haha: !!
     
  12. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    It is funny but after living here in the lowcountry(flat as a board) it is refreshing to have elevation changes.

    On our land we can look down to the little creek,look over to the 'big hill' in front of us that is all hayfields and generally be on top of the world....

    That being said it will take some getting used to walking UPHILL....LOL.

    Tango did you find somewhere to relocate?
     
  13. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    I live on the side of a hill.It means building terraces,and constantly walking at an angle,and steps to the house.Given my druthers,next propert will be lots flatter.

    BooBoo
     
  14. WanderingOak

    WanderingOak Well-Known Member

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    If you have a gravel driveway on a hill, be prepared for it to wash out after just about every hard rain. If it is constructed properly(at an angle to the slope and with ditches) and if the ditches are kept clear, you might get lucky. So far, I haven't :no: . Of course I am in Sidehill Heffer teritory (Sidehill Heffers grow their legs shorter on one side than the other so they can graze on hillsides. If they turn around, they fall over.), so your hill might not be as steep as my mountain.
     
  15. januaries

    januaries Well-Known Member

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    I live on a hill in the southeast US. It catches the breezes that make the windchimes dance. My setup is small, and the ridge extends behind the cabin, so there is enough flat space for what I need. In the winter, when the leaves are off the trees, the sunsets fill half the sky. I can see other blue hills in the distance. At night, I can identify the lights of my three neighbors--two in the valley and one on the next hill. Sound carries pretty well from the valley to my hilltop. I can hear my neighbors when they're socializing outside... I actually kinda like that because I feel like part of a community while still being far enough removed for privacy. The hill makes a nice, natural boundary so that people don't accidently tresspass. After having spent three years in a basement apartment which flooded regularly, I love the fact that all the water runs downhill and away from my home--no chance of flooding! The only two drawbacks are ones that have already been mentioned: a dirt driveway on a hill is prey to erosion, and walking anywhere means I always have to walk up a hill to get home. But walking uphill is good for me, and there are ways to protect your drive. Given the choice, I will always choose a hilltop over a valley.
     
  16. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everyone :) I love the different perspectives. Sounds like my animals will be okay there. Maybe I can afford an ATV :) This land has flat areas including about five acres of flat land on top of the hill which is where the little mobile is set. It has sloping and steep land but there are no neighbors at all and it is surrounded by timber lands (both corporate and privately owned). Deb your good points, bad points helped a lot :) Oz, I am relocating to Tennessee, I think. I've yet to sign the papers- right now I can't stop shaking from my nerves... :rolleyes: don't want to make a huge mistake.
     
  17. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    We were SO worried about it all but honestly when it came time it was fine....we know NO-ONE in the area and have NO ideas as to work but so what???

    We will figure it out.

    So will you I am sure.

    Good luck and maybe in a few years there can be a southeast homesteader get together...
     
  18. sidepasser

    sidepasser Well-Known Member

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    Hi,

    I live on a ridge, everything is either downhill or downhill (ha!). Make sure that you can get water. My well is drilled, 485 feet deep, and that is on the "low" side of the ridge.

    Driveway is a pain to keep in good repair, erosion is a problem, planting anything will involve terraces and just try to set a barn someplace without leveling it out first!

    still, rather be on top looking down, than down looking up - especially during the rainy season...a lot of my neighbors get flooding while I am always ok as their land is flat with no place for the water to run off.

    I did have to pay out big expenses for a barn (leveling again) and a riding arena (again, have to knock the hill down to make a level spot, then dig ditches (swales) around it so that it won't flood.

    Horses don't mind the hills though.
    Sidepasser
     
  19. Rita

    Rita Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We moved from FL to TN and had to adjust to the curvy, hilly roads again. We moved from the MD mountains to FL and were so glad to be back in the hills. Our health is much better as the hills give you enforced aerobics, who needs a health club! We have a driveway that is level to the kitchen and the front of the house is level to the basement. It took about 4 years for the driveway to settle in enough that is doesn't wash out anymore. We love to sit on our front porch and overlook our valley and our other mountain. We love it and will stay as long as we are able. Rita
     
  20. unioncreek

    unioncreek Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I live in southeastern Washington state were that's all there is. some of it is so steep they have trouble keeping tractors and combines on the hill sides.
    They have build self leveling combines that are used on these hillsides.

    BobG