You had to have heard him say it, but years ago my good friend Tim spoke those words in only the way he can to describe….well, I forgot what it was actually. And ever since then, the phrase immediately comes to mind whenever I think of Tim, hunting, and food, especially if it’s something I’ve never tasted before.
So this was my first of two hard dates on the trip. Tim’s a born and bred Minnesotan who grew up hunting so it was no surprise to see he ended up working for Backcountry Hunters and Anglers after grad school in Eugene. He came up with the idea for the cook-off a few months ago and hit the pavement organizing what turned out to be a hugely successful community event.
But let’s backtrack a little. Remember, I was camping along the Colorado through a pretty intense storm with flood watches throughout the state and questioning my choice of location. Turns out I didn’t float away overnight and the rain was intermittent through the morning. Finally, I could enjoy a cup of coffee after getting up.
The day was looking to be similarly soggy but I only had 4 or 5 hours to get to Longmont.
I-70 followed the Colorado River for quite a ways. In some spots it reminded me of driving though the Gorge along the Oregon-Washington border. Not quite as impressive, but if you don’t know already, it might be worth it for you to check out the Colorado once it gets into Arizona.
And more random snaps along the way….
Like so many places in the summer with some elevation, there’s a lot of construction going on. Turns out folks going west were getting the worst of it, though.
Ancient symbol for “Where is the sun?”?
I didn’t realize I’d be up around 10,000 ft along this highway. But sure enough, I was surrounded by snow at one point.
Pretty epic tunnel through the mountain. You ever play the ‘see if you can hold your breath through the tunnel’ game? Couldn’t make it all the way through this one.
This traffic was lined up for miles.
Finally made it to Longmont around 2pm and was relieved I’d get a break from driving in the rain for a few days. I’d be staying with my good friends Tim and Megan who I met about 9 years ago through the RARE program. And right before I left Phoenix Megan warned me about her size when I saw her- they’re expecting in August. (This is the type of news I regret missing by deactivating my Facebook account for a few months!) I kinda wished she hadn’t told me, but since she did I was prepared. She says she’s elephant-sized. Big enough to park a couple cars on, huh Mego? Hardly. Beautiful as ever is all I think.
Tim was prepping for the cook-off that would start in a couple hours. Megan and I caught up a bit and ran some errands.
After dropping by and saying hi, Megan and I headed back to the house where I enjoyed a well-needed shower. Then to the cook-off at a nearby park.
I was vegetarian for 12 or so years so it’s funny to me now that I can get excited about the prospect of eating mountain lion for the first time. Turns out it didn’t make it there, but still a varied selection.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t until consuming a couple of these…
…that I finally grabbed my camera. So I missed getting photos of a lot of the food. I guess that gives you an idea how good it all was. In any case, here were some of the selections:
Yup, I had the squirrel, too. Not bad. Would you believe me if I told you it placed in the top 3?
The antelope tacos were delicious.
As were the elk sliders.
Bison taquitos? Oh, so good.
Good food, beer, raffle prizes, silent auction- great job Tim. Really hope it is the first of many more.
And my visit was just beginning! It looked like I was in for quite the weekend in Colorado.
Oh, and for the record, none of it tasted like chewy chicken 🙂