Back in 2020, Cjell Monē and I wrote about our friend Karl Artis‘ eclectic bike collection and his collaborative “Bikes for Buddies” fundraiser with Matt Whitman, which raised enough money to purchase fifty bikes for youngsters in need. Since then, Karl has added even more bikes to his personal cache, including an enviable custom mountain cruiser, and finally found a home for the youth bikes after months of pandemic-induced hiccups. I recently met up with Karl and a crew of other friends – who were fresh off a weekend of building and donating bikes – to check out Karl’s new cruiser and enjoy some metamorphic chunder on the trails of North Phoenix.
Recently, the Navajo Nation reinstated a 57-hour weekend lockdown due to the spikes in COVID in several communities. This put a hold on our first official Dzil Ta’ah Adventures youth bikepacking series outing in Nazlini, which was originally slated for September 26th. Once the lockdown is lifted, which we hope will be soon, we will proceed as planned with the Dine Composite participants. With the postponement of our first trip, we felt like this was an opportunity to leverage the extra time and continue to shape our mentorship program and build more of my team’s dexterity with an outing in John’s Canyon, Utah, at the southwestern base of Cedar Mesa.