#22. Thoughts from the Fatmans Loop Trail

After last night’s debate (debacle?), I knew I’d need to get outside, run off some frustration, and commune with nature. Luckily, the ~2.5-mile Fatmans Loop Trail passes right behind our current campground here in Flagstaff. Perfect.

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I’ve done very little running on unpaved surfaces throughout this marathon training, so the dirt singletrack was both a challenge and a treat. The US Forest Service describes the route as “an easy walk.” I don’t know if I’d go that far: plenty of jagged rocks, loose gravel, and gnarly roots make this prime tripping territory for those of us who are less than graceful on our feet. And it was drizzling when I left, so certain sections of the trail were a bit slick. Nevertheless, it was certainly beautiful, and the ubiquitous boulders were eye candy for this obsessed geologist.

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Did I mention the views? The trail ascends to ~7500 feet and affords a birds-eye panorama of Flagstaff below.

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I can see why people would visit this town and then decide to stay forever.

Speaking of which… We’re now almost four months into our RV journey, and for me, thoughts of place, community, and roots come up more and more often. I knew this would happen, which is part of the reason we committed to at least one year on the road. If we’re going to end up somewhere for good, I want it to be absolutely the right place for all three of us, and I want us to think it through and be 100% sure.

I can’t speak for Trent, but for me, the community in which we end up (if we end up in one spot) needs to have plenty of outdoor recreation areas, walking and biking paths, a great running scene, and a diverse population. According to these criteria, Flagstaff would be a strong contender.

Then I look at home prices and I’m like, Nevermind.

For now, these views are good enough.

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