Not many families can say they can put on downhill skis to reach the local market to go grocery shopping and return home using ski lifts, but for the occupants of Skigard Hytte Cabin in Norway, it’s a requirement. The cabin sits 943 meters above sea level, nearly at the top of the Kvitfjell mountain and aside from it’s breathtaking views and unique transport requirements, it is exposed to severe winter weather.
Architects and owners of the cabin, Mork-Ulnes Architects, have designed the cabin to sit 1.5m above the ground which is an effective way of dealing with high snowdrifts, minimising the possibility of being snowed in. This simple solution also minimally disturbs the landscape and allows for sheep and cows pass through their grazing trail. It’s not unusual for animals to take shelter under the house!
The exterior of the house is clad diagonally in Skigard, a timber traditionally used by Norwegian farmers as fencing, and every internal surface is also clad in timber – from the cabinetry, custom furniture, shower walls and bathroom floors. The green roof was one of the few choices deemed suitable by local council and is lush with native grasses found on the ground below.
– Green roof
– Extensive use of locally sourced timber
– Triple glazed argon insulated windows
– Floor to ceiling windows provide ample natural night, minimising use of lighting
– 8 inch/200mm thick insulated walls means the house requires minimal heating despite the freezing conditions outside
There was something interesting about making a cladding out of log that was completely detached from the house – creating a log cabin skin that sits outboard of the building, where it is not the load-bearing element one is used to in conventional log construction.
Nadine is the founder and editor of Eco Edition and founder of the Eco Edition Design School. She’s an experienced interior designer, sustainable materials consultant, speaker and serial home renovator.