The Miles City Earthship built for Scott Elder and Karla Lund is not the only one in Eastern Montana.
Next door, artists Tucker and Glenna Bolton, are building one themselves.
The couple has already spent two summers working on its construction and hope to have half the house ready to occupy this winter as they continue working on the rest.
North of Big Timber, on 64 acres with a killer view of several mountain ranges, Monte Koch has hired an Earthship crew to build his home.
Led by Earthship pioneer Michael Reynolds, a crew spent two weeks working on Koch’s home last fall, building the rear tire wall and shaping the terrain around it.
Next September, the group will return for about a month to complete the shell. Koch will work with local contractors to finish the interior.
Koch, 48, was raised in Billings and graduated from the University of Montana. Although he works with commercial real estate in Dallas, Texas, he has always planned to eventually return to Montana.
Tucked into a bluff above the Yellowstone River, an architect known as the “Garbage Warrior” built a home with walls made from cast-off tires and empty soda cans.
The home’s south face, an angled wall of glass, rises over a greenhouse bathed in sunlight reflected off the snow-covered hills east of Miles City. Its other three sides are sunk into the hillside.
Last summer, a work crew and volunteers rammed dirt into tires to create 650 steel-belted “bricks,” which were stacked in rows, nine tires high.
Empty soda pop cans and beer bottles cemented side by side and covered with adobe mud became the interior walls of the eco-friendly home built by longtime Miles City residents Scott Elder and Karla Lund.