Maroon Lake logistics an easy fix | AspenTimes.com
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Maroon Lake logistics an easy fix

Regarding the Aug. 22nd article on the Maroon Lake bus, (Aspen-Sopris District Ranger Kevin Warner) saying that hikers from the Butte or the Four Pass Loop “should be getting a (bus) reservation just like everyone else,” just isn’t very bright.

Think about it. You’re a little ripe after you’ve been hiking for a day or more. And you’re carrying a 50-pound pack with (these days, it seems) various bits of poorly packed paraphernalia dangling off of it. Now cram your stinky self and your megapack into a bus with a bunch of freshly scrubbed trippers who rode up from Aspen to get their Bells photo. Oh yeah, where’s that mask? Now do that for 100-plus backpackers a day. Not exactly a Rocky Mountain High.

It’s equally goofy to suggest that “hikers and backpackers get to Maroon Lake as early in the day as possible, preferably in the morning when more seats are generally available.” Unless you want them all camping at Maroon Lake to catch the bus, that means they’d need an alpine start to get off the mountain as well as to get on it. Crazy.

And please don’t send those hikers and backpackers to other areas of the wilderness. They’ve already trashed West Maroon Creek, Conundrum and the Four Pass Loop. We’re enough like Yosemite already. Don’t make it worse.

The solution is simple. Let Uber or Lyft drivers up past the gate house after 5 p.m. to pick up their fares so long as they have an empty vehicle on the way up and pay the $10 fee. The Crested Butte and Four Pass hikers won’t interfere with the day trippers, won’t have to screw around with a cumbersome reservation system, and won’t be calling the ranger station to complain. If that’s too sensible a solution for you, charge them $20.

Barry Vaughan

El Jebel


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