sheep

“Home-Free” Man Lives in Sheep-Drawn Covered Wagon, Thrives on Mostly Milk and Wild Edibles

Aaron Fletcher has created his own one-of-a-kind lifestyle. He’s a nomadic shepherd who lives out of a cart drawn by his sheep. On his website, he explains that his eco-activism has led to this way of life. His sheep guerilla-graze on public grass or in yards with the owner’s permission. They provide Fletcher with most of his needs from wool to food; he has lived off of a diet of half a gallon of milk a day, which is about 2,500. calories. This is supplemented by homemade butter and cheese, in addition to whatever he can forage.

Being a ‘homefree; person is the opposite of being homeless… while it’s also the opposite of being housed, it’s like the third-side of a coin,” he explains. [1]

Image Credit: Aaron Fletcher | 123HomeFree | Youtube

The Nomadic Shepherd of Oregon

Fletcher used to “guerilla garden” in public spaces in Ashland, Oregon, before switching to “guerilla grazing.” “This is 10 times more efficient because I’m harvesting [milking] multiple times a day,” he said in a video interview. “I’m converting what’s already here into milk. And the harvest is assured. Whereas if you guerilla garden, they could sell the property. They could mow it down. A deer could eat it.

He still supplements his diet of dairy with wild herbs, fruits, and nuts, although he does shop on occasion. “Potatoes are the main thing I get from what I call the artificial economic system,” he said.

His cart is a lightweight wagon with bicycle wheels, covered with plastic and insulated with wool. Under his bed is a wood stove with a stove pipe across the ceiling to provide more heat. “Any welder can put together this wagon for $1000,” Fletcher said. The cart is built to accommodate the sheep that prefer to wander from pasture to pasture. In that way, they lead Fletcher more than he leads them.

His “kitchen” contains two cooking stoves, an evaporative cooler in place of a fridge, and a solar tube oven for baking bread made from wild grains. He also optimizes solar power to charge his cell phone. Additionally, he turned a pesticide sprayer into a shower. [2]

Read: She Has Been Living Off The Grid For Over 30 Years! This Is What Her Life is Like

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Trading and Living Sustainably

Fletcher’s lifestyle includes work-trading for home-grown food, a place to park his cart overnight, and the like. He offers his skills in mowing yards, shepherding, and sheep care, including trimming hooves, shearing, treating their illnesses with holistic methods, milking, assisting births, wool spinning, wool felting, and of course, turning their milk into butter and cheese.

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Image Credit: Aaron Fletcher | 123HomeFree | Youtube

Furthermore, this nomadic, trading way of life is Fletcher’s solution to what he considers is two of society’s largest issues. The first is increasing homelessness and the second is small farmers losing their business, which lowers food security for locals. The two can help each other, as Fletcher has shown. Farmers can host and feed people who are homeless in exchange for labor they otherwise can’t afford. “Living on a tent on a sustainable farm is a great deal for the homeless, and the farmer,” he said.

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He got his goats and dairy sheep in 2014. At that time, he was with a group advocating for Oregon to rewrite their “Urban Livestocking Laws” to legalize keeping miniature dairy goats in backyards. Afterward, however, no one was actually buying the goats, so Fletcher began a “goat share” to share their milk with those who would offer their yards. But soon, everyone backed out, leaving Fletcher with the goats, and leading him to live off the land with them. Later on, he switched them with dairy sheep since their milk is more nutritious, they provide wool, and they are quieter — a vital quality for roommates. 

Read: Couple Built Greenhouse Around Home To Grow Food And Keep Warm

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Inspiring Others

He encourages other people to keep sheep and dairy pets as a sustainable way to supply food and wool. As he wrote on his website, “You can buy a dog and a mower and have to feed them both their fuel, or you can just get a goat that mows and its milk will feed you!”

Overall, he hopes to spread his message of environmentalism and important survival skills. [3] “I’m a prepper, but not a normal, selfish prepper,” Fletcher said. “I’m a community prepper. I’m not so interested in surviving in a post-apocalyptic situation if everyone around me is suffering. So I’m trying to bring up the community so they can all thrive.”

To see more about Aaron Fletcher’s lifestyle, you can check out his website, Facebook page, and Youtube channel. If you want to support him, you can make a donation via Paypal, which will go to phone cards, website fees, and other activist projects. For a monthly donation and more behind-the-scenes footage, you can become a Patron. Or you can contact him through his email address: [email protected]

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Keep Reading: Family that lives in off-grid ‘clay’ home haven’t had to pay bills in over a decade

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Sources

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  1. “About.123Homefree. Aaron Fletcher.
  2. “Went homeless. Done Guerrilla Grazing by choice ever since.” Fair Companies. Kirsten Dirksen. August 15, 2021
  3. 123Homefree.Youtube. Aaron Fletcher.
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