Rolling Wonders

This 40-acre property in scenic Mazama, Wash., was zoned only for a main house and RV use, but the owner wanted guest cabins he could occasionally rent out. So architect Tom Kundig, FAIA, put these small, self-contained “wooden tents” up on wheels. They're at once light on the land and warm, glowing beacons of welcome in an otherwise harsh landscape.

The huts' roofs pop up above the structures to capture every ray of Pacific Northwestern light, but a glass-rimmed monitor keeps rougher elements at bay. Inside, like an Airstream trailer, are the basics for survival, with durable plywood walls and cork floors. A bathing barn lies a discreet distance behind, and offers luxurious creature comforts—like heated showers.

The six 200-square-foot “Rolling Huts,” as they are called, each have a rudimentary kitchenette, a built-in bed, a dining/living banquette, and a woodburning Euro stove for heat.

It's like camping, but reassuringly removed from its most unpleasant aspects.—S.C.C. with C.W.

Architect: Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects, Seattle;
Builder: Tim Tanner, Seattle;
Structural engineer: MCE Structural Consultants, Stevensville, Mont.;
Photographer: Tim Bies.