Argyle: A Rustic Retreat

Victoria's cabin in Argyle New York is nothing short of her Airbnb description: charming, light filled, rustic, and off the grid. Thirty minutes outside of Saratoga Springs, I watched the frostbitten trees pass by through the window. We curved around snowy hillsides where horses stood atop. I could see their breath shoot out of their nostrils each time they huffed. Weren't they cold?

One last right turn, and we pulled into one of the two parking spots that had been plowed for us. Through the tree branches we could see smoke traveling out of a yurt. We peaked around the trees and found Victoria stacking up firewood. She welcomed us to her property and brought us a black snow sled with a rope to tow our bags to the cabin. 

"The cabin smelled of kerosene lanterns and fresh cut wood."

We piled up our firewood, tossed our bags in, grabbed hold of our guitars, and trekked 100 yards back to our secluded cabin. Victoria gave us a thorough tour and made us feel right a home. Rustic was right. The cabin smelled of kerosene lanterns and fresh cut wood. With no running water, no electricity, and no cell phone service, it quickly dawned on us that we were in for a true barebones experience.

"I didn't expect it to have such a hold on us, but the orange glow was therapeutic and mesmerizing."

When the sun was nearly set, we watched the wood stove like one would watch television. I didn't expect it to have such a hold on us, but the orange glow was therapeutic and mesmerizing. Maybe we are just a couple of pyros. Log after log, the fire raged. We sipped our whiskey and strummed our guitars for the next two hours. 

It was somewhere around 21 degrees at night, but the 8 layers (no exaggeration) of wool and flannel blankets kept us plenty warm. The silence was comforting. The crackling and popping of the fire was soothing and led me straight to sleep.

We woke up to a blanket of snow the next morning. At a leisurely pace, we boiled some water and scooped out some Cafe Bustelo for a french press to get us going. Soon after, sausage was sliced, eggs were cracked, and english muffins were toasted over the wood stove. We indulged in a quiet breakfast, just listening to the wind and looking out at the birds play. 

New York City can be so overstimulating. Between the sirens of firetrucks or police cars and the dense population bustling on every street, one may get overwhelmed or feel claustrophobic. It is important to take care of your mind. 

This cabin was the perfect recluse. We enjoyed being off the grid for a couple days. Music was played, books were read, and pure conversation was exchanged.  

Photos + Video: True O'Neill, Anthony Garito

Words: True O'Neill (edited by Megan Corletto)

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