"Golden Cup Homestead is a spiritual and health retreat center; a farm, a forest, 

a stunning example of ecological design principles. Nestled in the rolling hills of Mendocino County, Northern California, it extends over 120 acres of diverse forests and Oak Savannah with mature Redwoods, old-growth Douglas Fir, Manzanita, Madrone, and California Bays. Remote. Secluded. Pristine air and pure water flowing from our creek, wells, and year-round artesian springs. Golden Cup Homestead is a faith-based, family environment proud to host individuals, families, groups, or small communities seeking intentional living, and a supportive environment to welcome transformation into their life." -Golden Cup Family



Learn to Build with Earth in the Golden Cup Homestead

Session:1 Cob Sauna Restoration

May 6th-15th 2022

Part A: Sculpting Living Spaces–Straw, Stone, Cob, and Round Poles (May 6-8)
Part B: Cob Fixes Everything–Repair and Maintenance of Earthen Buildings (May 9-12)
Part C: Fine Finishes–Plasters, Alis and Clay Paints (May 13-15)

Join us this spring for part or all of this very special opportunity to learn and build and grow together. The 120 acre Golden Cup Wilderness just outside Ukiah in Northern California is home to a dizzying array of Nature’s handiwork, from ancient madrones and manzanitas to moss-covered oaks and even a mature redwood grove, watered by artesian springs and a seasonal stream. Hidden within the forest are private camping spaces, yurts, straw bale cabins, and a magical 2-story redwood treehouse and cob sauna built by the renowned natural builder Sun Ray Kelley. 

Golden Cup is being gently restored by her current stewards, the Clark and Adoracion Pentico, as a family-oriented vacation and spiritual retreat center. Uncle Mud and the Mud Family are excited to join the Pentico family in restoring the beautiful natural buildings on the site and making our own creative additions to the village.

Upgrading and restoring the sauna bathing complex will be the primary focus of this session, with several “test runs” of the sauna. Guests are warmly encouraged to take time to open themselves to the full magic of Golden Cup Wilderness including hiking and meditating and forest bathing and just hanging out.

For those who can’t join us for the whole time, our 10-day build will be divided into three self-contained experiences. Together these mini-workshops will cover the different natural building skills necessary to create and maintain snug, beautiful buildings of your own from local natural materials such as sandy clay soil, straw, stone, and round timber. 

Hands-on experience will include sampling from:
Rubble-Trench/Stone/urbanite foundations
Simple round wood framing
Load bearing and sculptural cob (mixing by foot and with machinery)
Straw bale walls
Straw clay insulation
Earthen floors
Cob sculpting
Earthen plasters
Natural paints and alis
Incorporating salvaged materials
Special detailing for severe climates
Shade-tree lecture sessions will include:
Building layout
Materials collection & storage
Passive solar and Pattern Language design
Insulation and thermal mass
Budgeting and scheduling
Dealing with the Building Department
Working with volunteers/groups
Site safety
Window and door framing

This is an excellent workshop to take if you are considering building your own home, cottage or shed, or just want time playing in the mud in the wilderness with like-minded souls.

Full Price (after February 28, 2022) $1,495 USD
Early Bird Rate (before February 28, 2022) $1195 SAVE $300!
Early Bird Group Rate (per person, before February 28, 2022) $1095
Bring your friends and each of you will save!
Mini-Workshop Rate (3-day experience) $500
Daily Rate $180
Half-price work-trade is available. Please email for an application.
Children may attend with their parent(s) for $15 per day to cover food
The workshop fee includes all meals (vegan friendly). Food sensitivities can be accommodated. Please email for details. Golden Cup Wilderness is a family-friendly place so plan on bringing the kids. 

Workshop rates include camping facilities (tent space, composting toilets, and hot showers) at the site. Deluxe sleeping accommodations are available for an additional charge ( Limited RV space is available (please contact for details).



Hands Meet The Earth

We look forward to exploring with you!