Back-to-the-land, or homesteading movements, have been going on for centuries, but the motivation remains the same — to live a simpler, less expensive and more wholesome life.
The 15 acres of rocky land Audra Christie and Ralph Hirtle own up a steep hill in Harrington represents a way to move forward without incurring debt.
In the 1960s, droves of people followed the example of Helen and Scott Nearing, who moved to Brooksville in 1952 and were considered pioneers for the self-sufficient lifestyle they illustrated in their book “The Good Life.”
Audra and Ralph are among today’s new wave of young self-reliants putting down roots throughout the Downeast region and Maine. The couple finished paying the $15,000 loan for their land last fall and now are saving to drill a well.
For now Audra and Ralph rely on water caught in rain barrels for their chickens, dog, two cats and ferret, and to bathe and wash their dishes.