Between Twisp and Winthrop is the very first Smokejumper Base in the United States. We rode by to see if this elite group of skydiving firefighters were giving tours. We were in luck! Scott, a second year Smokejumper, with 11 years of firefighting experience, was happy to show us around the base.
My favourite part was the sewing machine. It’s an industrial Pfaff. All the equipment, uniforms, bags and parachutes are made by the Smokejumpers themselves, right here on the base. Derek and I have a Pfaff too. It was a wedding present from Granda Pat and we use it for everything from making quilts to repairing gear. In the old days when we had more time than money, Derek, inspired by his amazing mom, used to make outdoor gear for us too. His Goretex mitt covers lasted a good 15 years.
Anna Sierra says she liked meeting real Smokejumpers best of all.
Having ridden through areas devastated by forest fires both recent and a few years old, it was quite something to hear about fighting fires from Scott.
We left inspired by these brave souls and amazed at yet another awesome stop on our journey.