A Rustic Pioneer Cabin in Off-Grid California

A historic single-family cabin located in Wonder Valley, Calif. recently sold for $48,000.

Built in 1956, the rustic residence offers the perfect opportunity for off-grid living on five acres within Southern California’s High Desert region. The 288-square-foot home has one bedroom and one bathroom and while it doesn’t have any water or power, its unique location makes it stand out from the other homesteads in the area.

Just within an hour’s drive of Palm Springs and about 150 miles outside of Los Angeles, the cabin is surrounded by 460 acres of unobstructed desert views and sits directly behind the world famous Palms Restaurant, which has been in business since the Pioneer times. The rustic roadhouse is an attraction itself, serving beer, wine, dinner and Sunday breakfast.

The 1950s cabin is one of a few remaining of its kind in Wonder Valley known as the “Jackrabbit” homesteads. They are a result of the Small Tract Act established in 1938, which made desert land for homestead use purchasable for as little as $10–$20 an acre. Many homesteaders began to populate the area, but most ended up abandoning their homes after experiencing the harsh living conditions of the desert. 

For some, living remotely in the quiet of the desert can be a peaceful escape, especially amidst today’s rapidly growing cities and communities. This Wonder Valley cabin doesn’t have the luxuries of modern living, but its unique opportunities and off-grid location offer a special type of lifestyle that most homes today can’t make possible.

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