One of my favorite nearby places to just chill out and think while waiting for storm skies of the mountain highs to setup over the range, is this meadow right here. Called Bonito Park, its a forest open space just outside the entrance to Sunset Crater National Monument. I would often spend hours on a stormy day waiting for the sky to break, cry, rage, or be indifferent...a true friend that understood and allowed me to be me, considering my life's storms and turmoil and how seemingly important it all must be to creating the range of my own character.
Hours would go by, amused by my mountain meadowed muse, and when I would drift away from my presence here for any length of time, my muse would snap me back to the moment, reminding me that anywhere else I mentally was, was not real...this was real and the rest was either just the past or the future, not real: The hawk taking the field mouse just a few feet away; the herd of pronghorn antelope grazing through; or the western bluebird perching on the sage nearby, when not flying out and back to its nest with tasty bugs. I didn't realize it at the time, but this was a healing field for me.
Its now time for the field to heal, as this area was consumed by the tunnel fire, April 19th, 2022.
The San Francisco Peaks is a volcanic mountain range in San Francisco volcanic field in north central Arizona, just north of Flagstaff, and are the remains of an eroded stratovolcano, resulting in the six highest peaks in Arizona. The highest summit in the range, Humphreys Peak, is 12,633 feet in elevation. The remaining caldera council of six are
- Agassiz Peak, 12,356 feet
- Fremont Peak, 11,969 feet
- Aubineau Peak, 11,838 feet
- Rees Peak, 11,474 feet
- Doyle Peak, 11,460 feet
An aquifer within the caldera supplies much of Flagstaff's water while the mountain itself is in the Coconino National Forest, a popular recreation site for travelers near and far.