Sunday, June 20, 2010

Flagstaff, AZ

We both really like this town.  It reminds us very much of our home in Bozeman, MT.  It has great biking, a really fun and alive downtown, great beer, skiing, and a college to keep the vibe young and alive. There is lots of great riding and tons of free camping just north of town at Mt. Elden.  There are also a bunch of free disc golf courses for after biking.

We planned on staying a week or so riding around, but a series of fires changed all that.  First there was a fire just south west of town that caused an evacuation of our truck stop we were trying to shower at.

There was a free concert all weekend long downtown that we watched after that.  Great music and a fun vibe. You know the tent, food vendors, and art for sale.  The planes dropping fire retardant also were flying right over the music venue which was crazy and cool.

Then the next day or so something crazy happened that I won't forget.....

It was Sunday morning on Father's Day when we decided to go into town and wash our clothes and try again at a shower.  I rode down a trail (Shultz Creek) from our campsite and Claire picked me up at the bottom and we went to take a shower, which we did.  Then we hit up a laundromat and enjoyed a beer next door at a bar.  We went back into the laundromat to check on some stuff and the nice lady working there showed me a fire that just started out the back door.  I asked what direction that was and she then told me what I had feared.

Mount Elden was burning up and we left two bikes chained to a tree at camp and other camping stuff.  We dropped everything and raced up to camp. We both knew that the road was closed and all was lost in our guts.  We then saw an amazing site....our neighbors from camp honking at us.  After we followed them to a parking lot they told us the amazing story.

A fire had broken out about a 1/4 to a 1/2 mile away from our camp.  The fire personnel had first told them that it was ok and contained.....then that all changed.  The fire was out of control and the wind was blowing it right towards our/their camp.  They packed up their stuff and then found a fireman to cut the lock holding our bikes and packed up our camping gear.  2 out of 3 of our bikes would have been lost without their generosity.  That's not all.....

There was also a group of four or five RV campers full of bike riders and their family's close to our camp.  Most of the parents were out biking with the older children while the younger kids stayed in camp.  These amazing people helped them pack up before leaving the fire themselves at the last second.  They then drove around town looking for us as they knew what we were doing in town and wanted to give us our bikes.

These are those people.  Thanks again for everything and it warms my heart to see such acts of kindness in today's world.  You are all amazing people!!!! Pleas hit us up on facebook and stay in touch.....our doors are always open.

Adios Arizona!!!

We left Flagstaff en route to Cortez, CO (with another stop in Gallup, NM).  The desert is getting hotter and we need to find some green lush trails to ride in Colorado.  I heard a rumor that the high country is dry now.


Greg Heil said...

Wow, that is a crazy story! Those must have been some awesome people you met. Mad props to them!

Jeff Minalga said...

Your pictures and adventures makes my heart go wild! I sent some of your great pictures into PhotoDirect for hard copies and will send to Grandma Minalga....she loves that. Keep up the good work and follow the dream....National Geographic wants you! DAD