This is one of the best Summers to be in Steamboat!
Spring was wet. Everyone will agree that it was off the charts with rainy weather, including two days where it snowed a few inches in town. On Summer Solstice nonetheless!
The result is a very green and lush Yampa Valley. Trees, flowers, grasses all are full of life. Wildlife is happy. Visitors can’t believe the mild Summer weather nor the greens that are everywhere from hillsides to valley views.
When Spring was raining, I noted two things: 1) this much water was going to make a beautiful Summer, and 2) El Nino was going to continue to keep it beautiful. Lucky me, I was right!
Having spent much time hiking nearby, it has been easy to enjoy the mountain climate. Last weekend we took a trip to Hahn’s Peak for an overnight campout and hike up to the fire tower. It was good to see so many people enjoying being out. Though there were some bugs, camping out was very comfortable. At night, the stars were vivid. It was one of the clearest nights I have been able to observe the Milky Way.
On the hike up Hahn’s Peak to the fire tower, it was a little warmer than I wanted. That being said, the hike was quick and towards the top, there were snowbanks dotting the landscape. Some of them quite large and covering parts of the trail up. It was great to see kids glissading down the snow and dogs rolling in the cold, tongues hanging out.
A weekend or so earlier, Rabbit Ears was much the same. Meadows of wildflowers in bloom greeted us as we took the gentle hike towards the famous rock formation. The number of flowers blooming was amazing and we found some we had not seen before. Towards the transition to the top, there was a large snowfield we had to cross. It was about a quarter-mile long, and at times two feet deep.
Both hikes were beautiful blue sky days like only Colorado can provide. Being in Steamboat is something that I get bored from and do my best not to take for granted. Accessing great wilderness terrain within a short drive is a treat, and definitely one of the reasons I live here.
Now that August is fast around the corner, families are considering the beginning of the school year. Many visitors this week are many of these persons. With many things still do, like tubing the Yampa and downhill mountain biking, it’s difficult to think that Summer will ever end. Thankfully, when Summer ends, there is a great season approaching!