Another house went on the move in Dungeness.
Husband and wife Jim Nichols and Natasha Merkuloff had their two-story, 3,300-square-foot home voluntarily moved about 100 feet from the bluffs on Sept. 16.
The home was built in 1992, about 100 feet from the bluff west of the Dungeness Wildlife Refuge overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
“(The bluff) has lost about 60 feet in 30 years,” Merkuloff said.
So the couple said they started talking to contractors at the end of last year, and finalized a move of their home and hangar in May.
They’ve been working with SCC Concrete and Foundation’s Shawn Canepa as contractor and Nickel Bros., a home moving business from Everett.
Previously, Nickel Bros helped Martha Vaughan in early June move an approximately 4,000-square-foot, two-story home via barge from Surrey, B.C., to Dungeness along 3 Crabs Road. Vaughan lost her original vacation rental property to a fire in December 2017. It was used to support rescue animals, and after remodeling her new home she plans to use its income to continue helping animals, she said.
To make the latest move work, Nichols and Merkuloff bought a 100-foot-wide property between them and their neighbor.
“We like the house a lot and preferred moving it over building a smaller home,” Merkuloff said.
Nickel Bros’ started with moving the couple’s hangar next to their home on Aug. 20.
Both the hangar and home sit at the end of Land Ends Lane alongside a private runway on Blue Ribbon Farms. The couple said they use the hangar as a garage and don’t fly.
Crewmen began final preparations early in the morning of Sept. 16 for the house and started moving it around 2 p.m. before finishing early in the evening.
Large beams went underneath the home with 16-wheel dollies welded on as a semi-truck pulled, an excavator used a chain to help, and crewmen moved wood planks for the wheels to maneuver the dirt.
Dozens of neighbors stopped by and/or sat to watch the home move throughout the day.
Nichols and Merkuloff helped the crew in varying capacities throughout the process — with some nerves.
“It’s your house, so I was a little nervous,” Merkuloff said.
Prior to moving to Dungeness a few years ago, the couple spent 12 years traveling and living in their motorhome. They moved from their home into the motorhome in July as preparations began on for the move.
Merkuloff retired from public service after more than 20 years including time as director of child support services for Napa County, Calif. Nichols owned three auto body shops for 20-plus years as well as a health food store, and worked as a handyman prior to retirement.
Merkuloff grew up coming to the area as she visited family in Victoria, B.C., and they knew friends who moved to Sequim as well.
“We wanted someplace cooler [less warm, than California],” she said.
The couple’s home now sits about 120 feet from the bluff and crews moved it to blocks on Sept. 20 while the couple awaits utility connections and foundation work.