First let me state that we have nothing but kudos for our NRCS representative. They have been informative and responsive to any and all of our questions. We will be working with them to get another high tunnel down the road under their program. We just purchased one on our own to get it up this year. Under their program, we would have had to wait until next spring to see if we were accepted into the program. Only then could we purchase the high tunnel under the program. Here’s some info on our tunnel choice and how we are getting it up to Alaska from Tennessee.
We were originally looking at Rimol tunnels which are popular up here for the NRCS program. They are purchased through Kenai Feed & Supply in Soldotna. While Kenai Feed takes care of transportation to Alaska, the tunnels are pricey and all additional accessories have a transportation surcharge as well. A past post talked a bit about this.
We have enjoyed all of Curtis Stone’s writings and YouTube videos. He started very small (in a home’s backyard) and built his operation up in Canada. He contends with much of what we have here in Alaska such as snow and cold. He is a big proponent of Farmer’s Friend high tunnels. We researched them and don’t think they are quite as sturdy as a Rimol but they clearly can endure the winters as confirmed by Curtis. They cost less and can be reinforced for more severe conditions. We purchased one of their 100′ tunnels called a Gothic Pro
.We were considering purchasing a smaller Rimol Nor’Easter (30′ x 32′). It was priced at $4,200 for the basic tunnel. We will be bringing a Gothic Pro and numerous accessories up here for $4,400. Here is the tunnel and accessory breakdown.
We are estimating that a Rimol has almost a 100% markup to purchase it up here. Both Rimol and Farmer’s Friend will ship for free anywhere in the continental U.S. We talked with Rimol about shipping to a border state where a freight forwarder could take it from there. They weren’t eager to do that as they have a distributor up here. Farmer’s Friend had no issues however.
We used American Fast Freight as our freight forwarder. They have a terminal in Fife, WA. Farmer’s Friends will deliver a pallet of our goods to Fife for free. AFF will then take it from there and ship it to their Soldotna terminal for approximately $300. We will use our cargo trailer to pick it up at their terminal. They will load the 1,400 pound 8′ x 4′ pallet into our trailer for us.
All in all, we will have a good 100′ reinforced tunnel with drip irrigation for the price of a basic Rimol and get an extra 640 square feet of greenhouse space. It was an easy choice.
Be well & green dreams!