Lynx pass to rabbit ears

Had a rough start this morning. Doug and Jenn pulled out around 8:30am, and it looked like I was going to get out at 9 until I decided that my rear tire could use a bit more air. Unfortunately, I was using a Lezyne pump that has a hose that screws onto the value, and when I unscrewed the hose it took the valve core out with it! I hastily screwed it back in and now I was worse off than before.  I don’t have a valve core tool (note to self: get one!) so I hand tightened it and tried again – same result.  Except that now the tire had lost so much air that it was leaking air around the bead — I am running it tubeless.  Now I was panicking. I had a spare tube but I sure didn’t want to use it for this. I flipped the bike over, removed the wheel, pumped it up to about 10psi and then started doing the Stan’s shake-n-bake with the wheel.  Amazingly, I got everything to seal back up!  But I didn’t get on the road until 10am, and I had a grueling day ahead and barely any water left.

So I was on my way (off-route) to Toponas Creek campground to get some water when I saw the unmistakable icky green of a USFS truck approaching. I flagged him down to ask if he knew whether there was water at Toponas Creek. He didnt know and recommended that I filter some creek  water. So I  got to try out my chlorine diox tabs. Had to wait 2 hours to drink  it but it was good. (BTW, he told me he uses a SteriPEN and it takes only 3 minutes to do the job!)

Today was as hot as yesterday but since I was between 9k and 10k feet all day it felt great.

Big views and perfect weather at 9000’+.

At 10k feet I crossed an unnamed continental divide crossing.

Unnamed Divide crossing at 10k feet on FS250.

Yup, I am definitely on the east side of the Divide now!

I was getting really tired by the time I saw the signature rock formation that told me I was close to Rabbit Ears pass.

The rock formation that gives Rabbit Ears Pass its name.

Tough day with over 4,000 feet of climbing. Absolutely fabulous riding however, with the last 35 miles being on non-technical FS roads at high elevation in perfect weather. (I saw only 4 cars in those 35 miles!) I made it to the Dumont Lake campground just north of US 40 by 5:30. Very nice except for the epic mosquito population.

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