Opportunity Knocked


Sometimes when opportunities present themselves at precisely the right moment you must jump on them. On Monday March 15th, during an afternoon tour of  the Faraway Ranch in the Chiricahua National Monument we began chatting with our tour guide, Jim. He informed us of an opportunity to become volunteers with the National Park Service (NPS), and Chiricahua National Monument was short on volunteers. We could volunteer to give tours of the ranch working 4 days on and 3 days off  in exchange for housing. The idea of staying appealed to us and we were starting to realize that it’s still a little too cold and snowy north of here to continue bike riding comfortably. A little stall in the trip would actually be in our best interest! This place is like no other we have been and is extremely beautiful with plenty of area to explore.

So, we signed up.

We committed for a short term and began moving ourselves and our few possessions from the campground into a two bedroom house. We have a full kitchen and bath, internet and laundry. We have no neighbors other than the passing deer we see each morning and evening. We have been furiously reading and memorizing the history of  Faraway Ranch and the surrounding area. There is an immense amount of history in Bonita Canyon and the Chiricahua Mountains and we are thoroughly enjoying the full immersion. We will share a bit more about the work we do as volunteers in a later post.

For now, we are excited about the opportunity to gain experience working in a National Park.

The other day we heard about some warm temperatures up in Vermont and New York. We were having the opposite,  a bit of a cold snap. Snow even. We received about an inch here and the next day the high temperature was 42 deg. The following photos are from that morning.

Our new digs in Bonita Canyon

View from our front door

The Ranch, where we will be giving tours

View up canyon from our new house

Outcrop behind our house

Snow doesn’t last, and that’s the only precipitation we’ve seen here. Most days it’s clear blue skies, sunshine and pleasant temperatures.  We’re at approximately 5500 feet of elevation.  We’re in what’s called a “Sky Island” where the Sonoran Desert meets the Chihuahuan Desert.

View of Faraway Ranch from a high outcrop

Welcome to Faraway

So, for now we are going to sit tight, give some hours, do some hiking and soak up a break from the road. Stay tuned for more from the Chiricahua Mountains in Southeastern Arizona.

Bryan gives a tour

Temporarily uniformed and happy!



7 Responses to “Opportunity Knocked”

  1. 1 Kate Cross

    This seems to suit you two to a T!! Love the location…keep us informed about your new experiences at your new job!

  2. I have to say, that last photo of you two has got to be the cutest thing ever! Have a blast with your temporary gig! Looks like a beautiful place to be.

  3. 3 Gretch

    Nice Bryan and Debi! Enjoy your stay it looks beautiful. I look forward to more stories.

  4. 5 pat burns

    Hi from Pat & Martha from Santa Fe In the rented RV that shared the trail with you. So glad that this happened for you folks, I remember Debi responding to a comment about how great your adventure was by saying like, “I really miss a bed and a bath at times!” So happy for your luck, getting some extra time in that special spot!

    • 6 thrubike

      Thanks Pat and Martha!

      Now we are on our way through Arizona and into New Mexico!

  1. 1 Bend, OR « thrubike.net

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