Christopher Creek is a second home or summer home to hundreds of folks. Not a one of them were here this past weekend, it seems. Margo is off wintering in San Diego, while Mimi is down in the Valley with Rosemary and Pat and Trudy are down at their condo in Belize.
Too bad, because the weather has just been nice ... maybe too nice. The temperature hit 60 this week and there hasn’t been but a trace of moisture since the first of the year. And there’s nothing on NOAA’s National Weather Service online pinpoint forecast for 17 miles ENE of Payson at 5799 feet elevation ... not for the next 10 days, anyway.
We’ve had these winters without any moisture and then it comes all at once in March. Over to Dennis and Kelly’s the other night, they were remembering the three-foot-plus snowfall on March 11th or 13th of 2007. The reason this storm is so vivid in their memory — their house out in Colcord Estates burned to the ground that night.
Dale Ashby and Electra Van Eckhoutte were on that call and when the engine could get no farther, the pair plunged into the waist high snow and trudged a half mile and up an extreme incline. The house had been fully engulfed for a while, but they eventually got to the fire to see if the occupants were out. At the time it seemed a brave and brutal achievement ... it still does.
It was about sunrise on Sunday morning and Judy was gone. We talked a while back about her having health issues and now her battle is over. Although she moved to Star Valley a number of years ago, Christopher Creek was her home for a long time. She was always smiling and cheerful and was very special to a number of people here. It was a pleasure to have known her. Good night, Judy Bradley.
Back in December, at the decorating party in See Canyon, we first met the new managers of the Grey Hackle Lodge. The Lomax family came to the Creek from Pinetop. Chris and Tia are former operators at the Rainbow Lake Lodge.
Jaden, 11, Riley, 5, and Ryden, 1, are their three boys. The two older boys are in home school with their mom as their teacher. Chris and Tia both have degrees in herpetology and were involved in a reptile rescue operation in California. Chris says he is a big hunting and fishing enthusiast and seems to think the area is perfect for his interests. Brenden, who has been managing both Grey Hackle and Christopher Creek Lodge, says he welcomes the help. He also indicated that while there have been two or three Grey Hackle cabins open all winter, the balance of the units will reopen in early March. We welcome the Lomax family to the Creek and hope they have a great season.
Thanks to Bob Eggers from Kohl’s Ranch, to all the Iowa friends and to all the rest for the kind comments on the last article which reminded them of the cold winters back in the Midwest.
Gary was here last week to remove the tree and decorations in the Landmark. While we were attempting to finish off what was left in the draft cooler, he mentioned he can’t wait for the new season. He talked a bit about weddings, those coming and past, and about the new grandkids. By the way, while we didn’t quite get the job done, we gave it a heck of a try. They will be opening on Friday, March 14 for the St Patty’s day weekend.
We are hearing that the fire house secretary, Linda Digman, has been battling health issues as of late and we wish a full and speedy recovery to her. Karen Thornton was having a bit of a rough time going back to Thanksgiving and seems to be back to normal.
Well, the hot stove season is over and pitchers and catchers will be back in the Valley in about 20 days. Spring training is right around the corner. Tim Ehrhardt has been giving us his impressions about the new Cubs facility down in Mesa. We can’t wait to get down there and check that out and then get over to Salt River fields to see the 2014 edition of the Arizona Diamondbacks. The team opens its regular season in Sydney, Australia with the dastardly Dodgers and after the pool-peeing incident last fall, there’s likely to be fireworks early in the new season ... can’t wait.
Speaking of hot stoves, those of you who still heat with wood are aware of the virtues of nature’s incendiary device. You need not cut it, split it, stack it; you merely pick ’em up and bag ’em. It’s just the best fire starter. There’s no shortage of the ponderosa pine cone ... and that’s another week in the Creek.