POST TREE HOUSE
GREAT NORTH MOUNTAIN WILDERNESS AREA
FREDERICK COUNTY, VIRGINIA

The site for this house is a twenty-acre parcel. It’s extremely steep—almost unwalkable. It’s totally wooded, rocky, and overgrown, and populated by black bear. Because the land drops off so steeply, the site affords a very dramatic view of the Appalachian Mountains.

Since the grade is severe and difficult to build on, we needed to keep the house footprint compact (it’s 16’ by 44’). The result is a four-story house. The two lower levels are embedded in the grade on the entry side, while the house soars a full four stories on the opposite, roof deck side. Each of the four levels is essentially two areas, bisected by a staircase. The two lower levels contain bedrooms, the third floor is the entry and living level, and the top floor is an office and a large roof deck. The plan projects out on the longer facades, to provide different vantage points. Large windows take advantage of the view. Small windows provide security where the house is more vulnerable to attack by black bears and roving bands of feral teenagers when the owner is out of town.