Heading to Durango, hoping to get back on the grid for a few moments just to make a few important calls, we stop into a McDonalds that we saw in a town called Salida, Colorado. They had bathrooms and wifi. Perfect. We had a few other errands to do, one of involved stopping at the local packmail. We were anxious to get back on the road, when the lady behind the counter asked if we were stopping in town for the festival. We kindly said no, we are just passing through and heading to Durango and that we didn’t know there was a festival in town. This lady got very excited and INSISTED we stay in town for a few days and experience what is called FIBArk (First In Boating the ARKansas river). She proceeded to tell us all about the festivities about this river fest that happens along the Arkansas river that borders the town. They have tons of events every day, music, rafting events, food, the town nearly quadruples in size. We were sold after just a few short minutes of conversation with her. We ditched our plan and decided to stay. Found a local hostel and settled in! After further investigation we also found out that Rob’s cousin, Taylor was a raft guide in Salida too! What are the odds? This stop was just meant to be.
We arrived Wednesday night, found a place to stay and then headed to a kick off dinner for the FIBark festival. $10 all you can eat and drink food. SCORE. Following the dinner we went to a party that Taylor and her friends were having. It was a baconfest party. There was so much bacon! DOUBLE SCORE!
Thursday we explored the town, went in and out of all the local shops, anxiously awaiting the evenings festivities. Once 4PM hit, things for FIBArk started to pick up. There was a carnival in the park that opened up where I went and got my face painted.
Then it was time to see the race up S mountain.
Hundreds of people do a foot race from the bottom of the mountain all the way to the top and back. The winner finished in 10 minutes! We couldn’t believe it! We continued on to see the Raft Rodeo and boy was it a show! It is a few 4-6 person teams in rafts that just put on a shit show essentially. The best way to describe it is for you to check out the pictures we have at the bottom of the post and the few videos we have as well. It was hysterical! Our last evening in Salida finished up with some excellent live music, a lady drinking out of her boot… TWICE
following that we had a few drinks and a pool game at a local bar. All in all – a great day for sure.
We really enjoyed spending time in Salida with Taylor, her boyfriend Dillon, and their friends. We loved watching the festivities of FIBark go down. We only wish we could have stayed through the weekend as I know things only got more exciting as the weekend progressed.