Day 0, Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Trail start Rabbit Ears Pass, mile 1454.3
End 41-032WT near Dumont Lake, mile 1457.5
Southwest flight from Albuquerque to Denver, leaving at 6:30, arriving at 7:45, arrives late.
Go to main terminal west, level 5, island 5, and catch the 8:20 express bus to the Greyhound station arriving at 9:13. Denver airport is so large I make it to the bus stop with only a few minutes to spare, and would have been late if I had checked baggage.
My bus to Steamboat Springs leaves at 9:35, arriving at 2. Then I take the Free Bus to the post office and get a box I mailed myself so I wold not have checked luggage. Then another bus to the grocery for more food to pack, and a quick last town meal, then another bus to the east end of town where I can start hitching, at around 5PM -and it looks like rain soon.
Droplets start falling and I am almost ready to give up after a half hour of holding up my “Hiker To Trail” sign when someone gives me a lift– the least talkative hitch I ever had. The dog, Luna, was cute, though.
I am dropped off at Rabbit Ears Pass in a full downpour, and take shelter under a tree to waterproof my gear, and finally start hiking when the rain eases.
The unmarked trail goes up near the “rabbit ear” rock formation the pass is named for, then past a campground and Dumont Lake.
Soon after I see my first on-trail snow for this trip– that did not take long!
Soon I am in an area of snow melt and large areas of snow, and loose the trail as darkness nears. I head uphill to find a dry area to camp and discover the trail again.
Finally set up camp at after 8:30. Such a different world from how I started the day!