Part of the reason we went to South Dakota was to get a skirt on our fifth wheel in anticipation of our winter in Montana! I know, I know, most full-timers go south for the winter! But we've been craving a snowy winter. It's really hard to have a snowy winter in an RV if you have to travel to different locations every two weeks (usually the limit for campgrounds and boondocking spots). The snow, ice, wind, sleet, and rain make travel dangerous. So while we've had some snow during our travels, it's mostly been light snow and has happened when we've been able to hunker down and not travel for a day or two.
While working Sugar Beet, we read an add for a caretaker position on a ranch in southwestern Montana. The family has 130 acres filled with all sorts of critters: cows, horses, sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, a turkey, dogs, and cats. They take occasional trips and need someone to watch over their animals and property in their absence. So, for 10 hours of work a week (combined) and the occasional responsibility for feeding, watering, and caring for their animals, we have a wonderfully private place to stay for the winter. Our spot has it's own yard for Avery's and Omar's enjoyment (surprisingly he absolutely LOVES it and loves the snow and demands to go out daily!). Omar also has a bird friend come visit him (sits on a post outside of our window) every day which drives him absolutely nuts.
Our place is about a 7 minute walk from their house (about a quarter of a mile slightly uphill), so we have lots of privacy. The first photo below is of our spot in the snow at a distance. You can't even see our rig... see if you can find it!
We were greeted by horses upon arrival. The next day we woke up to snow. It was perfect.
We've only been here 4 weeks, but so far we love it! And the tasks have been mostly fun, too... we've stacked firewood, built gates, and cleaned their garage.
We love all their animals. We've fantasized for years about buying a ranch and getting some animals of our own. We figure this is a great opportunity to try this lifestyle on without paying for it! If we love it, we can pursue it and know what we are getting ourselves into. If we hate it, we've saved ourselves the money and hassle of figuring that out on our own. So it's a win no matter what.
I will likely have other posts down the road of our adventures here, but here's a bunch of images to get you started. Enjoy!