This story was a collaborative effort by the Valley Life columnists.
So much happened in Twisp this week it’s nearly impossible to recall. First, we can’t ignore the thunderstorms, their omniscient teasing with the muggy air and a taste of negative ions in the air culminating in the final cataclysm that erupted Saturday night.
Winthrop and Twisp apparently bore the brunt of the downpour, while communities on the outskirts were exempt. One friend remarked that this welcome addition of moisture to the ground would prevent some fires later in the summer. But another — a former smokejumper — countered with the argument that rains like this make grasses and weeds grow taller, then they die, dry out, and become fuel. So, the jury is out on how much good this rain will do.
Maybe we won’t know until the snow flies. Just a kind reminder that snow will possibly be here in 3 ½ months, or at least will be in Lost River at that time. I’m pretty sure that the “Mediterranean of the Methow” is chuckling at that.
But seriously, Twisp did have one of our biggest and best events of the year on the Fourth of July. Following the parade that hosted a remarkable number of classic vehicles, local acrobats, roller blading hockey fans, violinists, campaigners, citizen groups and of course the fire trucks, the Methow Arts-sponsored Arts Festival featured great local music by the Bitterroot Beets, Laura Love & Family Dog, and the March Fourth Marching Band. The headline act is an eclectic, funky, crowd-pleasing jazzy rock-and-funk ensemble from Portland that shows us all what high school band could have been like.
Someone in Twisp should build an ark for the parade next year. I think I saw one parked down the street from Yard Food. Speaking of Yard Food — I heard it’s going to be home of Weed & Seed store now? Or the Green Store? That might be simpler to remember.
Has anyone noticed how nice the streets are in Twisp in the Canyon Street area? When we first moved here, I gave my rollerblades to the Senior Center, since all the pavement had either potholes or loose gravel. But with all these beautiful smooth surfaces around town now, I’m gonna need those back. Did anyone grab them? I’ll trade you a garden snake. I got two. Don’t know what they are though — pine, gopher, garter? I am a writer (sort of), not a snake charmer. But my friend Kim Bondi has become one. Since moving into a house near a den three years ago, she’s relocated at least 15 rattlers — and claims that they no longer come near the house. Apparently, they get tired of being plucked up by snake grabbers and carried away.
Speaking of snakes, someone said they haven’t seen many this year. Someone else who’s lived here 10 years said they’d never seen a rattler yet — lucky gal. Someone else said their neighbor is so frightened of snakes, that they pick up sticks resembling snakes along their shared drive just to make sure she doesn’t get spooked. Now, isn’t that neighborly?
Finally, if you are still reading this you might be interested to know that living among us here in Twisp is a local rock-climbing champion. Suzanna Bacon, an 11-year old climber with the Riverfront Rock Gym’s Youth Climbing Team in Wenatchee, is headed off to USA Climbing Nationals in Bridgeport, Pennsylvania, this week to compete in her age division. Suz, as she’s affectionally called, attends weekly practices in Wenatchee at the climbing gym. Her parents, Christina Stout and Nate Bacon, are excited to travel to the East Coast to watch her compete; however, this achievement comes with a little disappointment.
The family of four, including their 6-year old son Wendall, had planned to hike the section of Pacific Northwest Trail from their home on Twisp River to the Pacific Ocean this July, about 500 miles. Similar to the PCT, the PNT, is a 1,200 mile trail stretching from the Continental Divide in Glacier National Park to the Pacific. Though their initial plans were thwarted, they intend to pick up the trail where they thought they’d be when they return from Nationals and complete the Olympic Peninsula portion of the trail. Good luck Suz — climb on!