As wildfires rage across the globe, here in the northern Colorado Rockies we’ve been blessed with lush green forests and meadows. We fall asleep every night to the murmur of Panhandle Creek, and feel a strong sense of reprieve. We’re grateful for the rain we’ve had this season.
Since moving into our mountain community, we’re learning about the importance of forest management and wildfire mitigation. Every year, we haul truckloads of deadwood to the slash depot and weed-wack the area around our cabin to reduce fuels in the Home Ignition Zone. Though we’re working with our neighbors to increase the fire resiliency of our community, we understand the need to prepare for the changes that will come with a warming planet.
The good news is there seem to be lots of options in nonflammable and fire-resistant building materials. We’ll use stone on the lower half of the cabin, but we’ve been pleased to learn about the options available in nonflammable concrete log siding. Those concrete sidings come in lots of varieties, ranging from the gorgeous hand-hewn log look to some that don’t look much better than the old vinyl siding. We’ve had several samples mailed to us, with more to come. Our first choice was extremely heavy and cost about twice as much as the second set of samples. On the plus side, those were light, much easier to work with, and filled with insulation. We have more research to do and more samples to come. Ultimately, we’ll be balancing affordability with a natural appearance that (like the beautiful hawk above) blends into our landscape.
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