UPDATE: I did a TV interview with Arise.TV. Watch the segment below.
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I was lucky enough to be one of the 4 people to venture to the island last weekend. I wanted to add to Tynan’s excellent account and add my notes on our experience.
Along with a group of ten or so people, we split the cost, and each own 1/10 of it — as an LLC.
Having ten people definitely made the price much more manageable—The total cost to buy the island was < $100,000 (/ 10). But having a group of people adds something even more powerful:
We added a group dynamic to an island buying experience.
The previous owner of the island had cleared a 20-ft radius of land, just enough for a single tent. Apparently he had visited twice with his sister.
But since we have a group of people, it became a fun experience. Everyone has been planning. We have a Facebook group that lets us discuss plans for the island, organize trips, debate if we should have goats (I have a goat-phobia and I am very much against goats).
Getting to the island
Getting there was a cinch. It’s in Nova Scotia, Canada (eastern edge of Canada), easily accessible by air or car.
The island itself is very close to civilization. It’s located 4 minutes by boat from the harbor of our very, very friendly Canadian neighbor Ray. Just a 10 minute drive from the shore to the nearest grocery store / diner, and just a ~50 minute drive to Halifax Airport.
Time to Arrive on the island shore: Leaving NYC/Boston — 10-12 hours by car, 3 hours if you fly into Halifax Airport.
If flying out of NYC, we can arrive via flight and boat to our new island in 3 hours
So last weekend, we actually visited the island. Brian, Aaron, Tynan, and I took a road trip from Boston to visit it and close the sale with the previous owner. It’s legally ours now, or at least this week.
What the island is like
“Why didn’t you get one in the Caribbean?” everyone always asks. Yea, we didn’t think of that first — but those are a bit more expensive.
The first question I asked Tynan when we planned to go to the island was: “Canada? Isn’t it too cold to ever visit our island?
No — it’s perfect for 3 months of summer, it’s quite nice for 3 surrounding months, and it’s pretty freezing for 6 months of the year.
So, we get 3-6 months of great, longggg-day summers. Plenty of time. And it’s so conveniently close that we could go for just a weekend.
AND: It has 3G coverage, so we can get Internet on the island.
RIght now, the island is deserted. When we arrived, there was just a 20-ft diameter spot cleared by the previous owner. So, the four of us camped there, setting up a tarp and two tents.
Our friendly neighbor Ray let us park our car at his house, and gave us a ride on his motor boat from his dock to our island shore.
We landed, set down our gear, and started to explore the island. It wasn’t the most beautiful land in the sea — but it was our home for the weekend, and our new paradise for the future.
Immediately, we all began planning and plotting how we could improve the island. It was rocky on the shores, and had the majority of trees had fallen due to a 2003 hurricane. The rocky shore was 15 feet deep, and the rest of the island was a forest of almost un-passable terrain.
It got dark, so we started a fire, using dry island wood and a handsaw that the previous owner had fortunately left. When the tide receded, Aaron spotted numerous crabs in the sand, and we decided to cook them using seaweed from the shore. The 2 crabs cooked perfectly, but it was way too much effort to eat them, so we let their eight brothers and sisters go free.
We boated back to the mainland (in an inflatable paddle boat) —it was less than a quarter-mile from shore. It took a while.
We got in our car and drove ten minutes to town to get breakfast and groceries. Then, we headed to Home Depot. We bought a ton of supplies, including an amazing Tree Trimmer, a hatchet, some saws and gloves.
We returned back late that evening and decided to take everything back in our inflatable boat—in the dark—in the rain.
The next day was spent completely on the island. We grabbed the tree trimmer and hatchet and began cutting away. We made trails through the middle of the island. We are constructing trails and paths —- building our own path, naming our own lanes, planning how to add more shelters, electricity, showers, and workstations.
What we’ll do with the island
Because there are ten of us, it isn’t a lonely task. And the people in our group are engineers, RV-dwellers, and genius entrepreneurs — people that actually do things.
Next spring, we’ll return to build more shelter — a big communal Yurt. We have a generator, so we’ll get batteries and power the island. We’ll begin planning private residences, building showers, and creating the perfect getaway.
I took some great video and pictures of the island as well, so I’ll write some posts in the future about how we develop the island.
HN/HtS Readers: Would you want an island?
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1) Would you want to own an island? Where/why?
2) What more would you like to know about the island/island-owning process?
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