We love to hike and camp out in the wilderness. But it can be challenging to carry everything you need. In Europe, Hut to Hut hiking allows trekkers to do multi day hikes without the added weight of a tent, water and other necessities. In this exercise, we asked students to expand on the hut to hut concept. In design thinking we like to define the problem, see what is already out there, analyze that and then redesign based on the users' needs.
Hut to hut hiking is common in Europe, but while convenient, can be a bit obtrusive and not fully in keeping with the natural landscape. There is also the concern of wild animals easily gaining access. We decided to create huts that hang above the ground level. They can be camouflaged and offer the benefit of inaccessibility to animals, at least those that don't fly and without opposable digits - (thumbs)
We brainstormed on needs...
- unobtrusive to natural landscape
- access to humans only
- protection from the elements
- ability to sleep and sit
- water collection
Here's what we designed...
The rounded roof offers protection yet the gentile curves mirror a more natural environment. Painting green and brown helps with the camouflage as well.
Rain water is collected and stored in a barrel below the floor.
Here we have an outdoor bathroom which does offer some privacy from one's partner (at the risk of not being so private to other hikers) The removable bin should be cleaned for the next guest. The hanging stairs are removable so wild animals do not have access. They will also let other hikers know that this hut is occupied.
Furniture is always nice so hikers can sleep comfortably and rest those aching feet. Also note the removable floor so there are no accidents in the middle of the night.
Lastly, when we hung our structure, we noted that weight distribution can be an issue. We created a system that would help maintain balance. While this method did help for the photography, we were not quite certain that this would work in the wild. We agreed that a more solid, structural support might be indicated.
This project required multiple iterations and refinements. 3Dux connectors let us construct, test and refine our project. We used ONLY recycled materials and our connectors. This lesson exemplifies the benefit of 3DuxDesign architectural materials quite nicely. You can find them right now on our live kickstarter campaign