A Large Lake Home With Views From Every Room

This lakeside timber frame has the feel and coziness of a mountain retreat.

This home is part of our "Best of the Best" contest for 2019. To vote for this home, scroll to the bottom of the story.

Photos Courtesy of True North Log Homes
On the shore of Little Lake Joe in Ontario, Canada, this 4,053-square-foot smart home was built to be an anchor for the owners’ family. The couple knew they wanted to replace the small cottage already on the site but were torn: They wanted the beauty of a log home but without the maintenance. After attending a trade show, True North Log Homes won the couple over with their technology and the fact that they’re a family business.
The biggest deciding factor for the homeowners was True North’s LogLock® System. It’s their patented self-adjusting locking mechanism which goes on the top course of the logs and, as they shrink, automatically adjusts for the settlement, locking them into place and preventing any bowing or twisting.
The logs themselves are a collage of Canadian wood and mortise-and-tenon joinery. The first floor and ceilings are eastern white pine, the second floor is Douglas fir from British Columbia and the floors are hemlock from Quebec. The exterior is made to match Colorado’s aspen chalets and is clad in timbers that were hand-hewn over a span of six months.
With maintenance woes out of the way, the next step was expanding the plan to accommodate a large family. The main floor and walkout basement each have 11-foot-high ceilings. The great room and octagon sitting area each have True North’s structural king post trusses, which support the roof system. The Citadel plan, on which this home is based, was modified to include a balcony and en suite for every room.
A priority in building this home was to put as many viewpoints as possible in the front of the home so that wherever you are, whether lounging in the great room or walking through a hallway, there’s always a view of the lake. A carriage house sits 50 feet from the primary residence. A second-floor living space empties onto a cantilever deck, which also offers optimal lake views.
Mark Wrightman, marketing manager at True North Log Homes, was with the homeowners every step of the way. “When they have the family up, which is often, they pack the house and overflow into the carriage house. They can host more than 20 family members at a time,” he says. That’s quite the anchor.

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