My wife Mickey and I were looking for a
retreat from our busy lives with stressful professions and three
near-to-teen children. We were seeking that perfect place for
a working retirement. A place where our children could explore,
work, create and develop away from our Tucson, Arizona home and
at First Sight
It was a Spring morning in 1995 when I first
saw her, a restless apple orchard with wonderful rows of trees
arm in arm awaiting a harvest that was never to come. The property
was located 2-hours southeast of Tucson and slighlty north of
the town of Portal, Arizona. The land had been for sale for some
time. She was tucked away at the end of a long dirt road in a
valley surrounded by the foothills of the Chiricahua
Mountains. This was Apache country where the great Cochise and Geronimo
and his warriors had roamed.
Before I became a plant scientist, my wife, a physician and I
spent most of our adult lives in the medical field. We worked
together on an Indian reservation for a number years. Many of
those who visit a reservation say they can feel a spirit or a
force present around them. Some say it's spirit souls watching
over their ancestors. As I walked this land I felt it call to
me, there were signs everywhere. While I stood surveying the buildings
and grounds, my gaze was suddenly drawn to a hilltop overlooking
the entire site. There, at the crest of the hill was a perfect
stone arch, carved thousands of years ago by the combined forces
of nature. Native Americans believe that the stone arch, this
frozen rainbow, is a sign, a calling, a "good luck"
charm. Without hesitation I phoned my wife and asked her to come
visit our new retirement home. Needless to say we purchased the
property, named it Colibri and began work creating our dream.
2003 marked a spectacular first harvest with friends and family.
Our wines are coming along better than we could have ever imagined
and they will be available for purchase this fall. Colibri Vineyard
is a very special place for us, we take care to meet of all her
needs and in return she gives us abundant, perfect fruit and outstanding
We hope you too will find your stone arch, look for ours on the
Colibri Vineyard label.
Robert Johnson & Mickey McDonald, Owners