Wapiti House

Project Location

Wapiti Valley, WY


studio.bna and studioryker



Case Study: Wapiti House

The Wapiti Valley of northwest Wyoming lies between the city of Cody and the entrance to Yellowstone National Park. The area is an outdoorsman’s dream: wildlife, interesting rock formations and plenty of activities including hiking, horseback riding, fishing and more are available for the daring.

The site was selected as a second home for a couple from Los Angeles, the pair looking for a second home where they could unwind, breathe the fresh Northern Rockies air, and take in the rugged, breathtaking views.

Forward Thinking Sustainable Design

Armed with an edict to design a home that’s both “aggressive and interesting” and also blends well the built and natural environment, architects Brett Nave and Lori Ryker of rykernave design were called upon to make their vision a reality.

In addition to anchoring the floor plan of the 3,100-square-foot home with a 60-foot wall of rammed earth to offer fortification from the extreme climate – the wall contains a 2-inch gap filled with rigid insulation – the home features 75 percent recycled-content steel and composite wood panels, among other sustainable design elements.

“The climate in Wyoming is quite volatile and weather conditions change frequently,” Nave says. “The homeowners love the capability to be able to open one panel – or the whole system – at any given time based on the weather.”

One of the most enjoyed (and greenest) features of the home is a NanaWall SL70 folding panel system in the living/dining/entertainment area. The moveable glass walls allow the residents to have a “bring-the-outdoors-in” experience, according to Nave.  “They use their NanaWall system all the time,” he adds.

“Before selecting NanaWall, we loosely looked at other wall solutions including Quantum, but we couldn’t seem to find the features we wanted for this project including an all-aluminum, minimal sightline solution,” Nave recalls. “With NanaWall, we were able to find what the homeowner was looking for.”

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