David E. Steiner

Retired USAF, Teacher, Dad, Grandfather, Curmudgeon

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The Beginning of The Season


You can hear it on the early summer breeze, friends. It's grunts and groans as people haul boxes of goods from trucks and cars to store shelves. It's the slap of mops on bunkhouse floors and the squeak of paper towels on windows. It's the snap of laundry hung on the line, and the thump and whine of washers and dryers. It's the snarl of chain saws and the growl of well diggers, and mostly it's the sound and sight and smell of lots more vehicles, from dirt bikes to semis, as we get ready for the real beginning of the season, on the 4th of July.

I know many people are looking forward to it, because it's a big part of their livelihood. But for those of us who just hang around our mountains for fun, this summer looks as though it may be particularly annoying.

First it was the price of gas, which went down and sent the number crunchers to their computers. They've written all kinds of analytic articles in the big newspapers in which they predict there will be a 14.5% increase in visitors to our lovely area -- a total of two and a half million people -- and there is apparently some question as to whether anything will be left of us by Labor Day. I'm not sure whether these are supposed to be tourists or Visigoths.

Add to the cheap gas the terrorist problems and it looks as though we're headed for a record summer in terms of visitors and I, for one, am all in favor of it. It think it's great that they come in the summer in droves, because that means they pretty much leave us alone in the winter, and I like that, too. I'm not too sure I could handle it all year long.

The Denver Post is referring to our beautiful RMNP as a "top tourist target," and I get the feeling we're lucky not to be the bulls-eye.

So we get extended hours at the Solid Waste Transfer Station and all the stores and restaurants are open and I can get groceries at Meeker Park, and friends are returning for the summer and in general there's just a frenzy of activity that culminates on the 4th of July.

I think I can handle the rest of the summer, even though they're predicting a "tourist stampede," but the 4th of July weekend is going to be just too much for me, I'm afraid. I can't stand all that excitement. I need a little more peace and quiet than we're likely to have that weekend.

I'm going to New York City.




© 1985 – 2003, David E. Steiner

Allenspark Wind Columns:


Why Allenspark?

Going Riding [August, 1985]


Used Cars

Peace and Quiet [1986]

Liberals & Conservatives

Going to the Movies

The Screened Porch

The Beginning of The Season

The Weather

The Hilltop Guild Bazaar

The End of The Season

The Gift of Time

The Beavers

Addresses [1987]


Watching the Trees Grow

Postal Rates

Changes in Estes Park

Square Dancing at the Pow Wow

Back to the Hilltop Guild Bazaar

The Solstices

Bird Feeders


The Estes Park Hardware Store [1988]


Limousine Service

A Memorial Service

A Hummingbird


A Hiking Trip

The Estes Park Public Library

Wild Life

Riparian Rights [1989]




Mountain Friendliness

A Motorcycle Trip

Satellite Television

“Weaving Mountain Memories”

Hotel Rates in the Old Days

The Price of Propane [1990]

The Front Range Almanac


Modes of Transportation

Miller Moths

My 50th Column

Modern Conveniences

Rock Climbing

On the Death of Otto Walter, Postmaster

Otto’s Memorial Service

A Big Owl Pot-Luck Dinner

A Whine About Telephone Service [1991]

After the Persian Gulf War

Some Changes in the WIND

The Trip to the Mountains

The Mountains in the Summer


Of Dogs, Music, and Children

Muhlenburg County

To My Grandson

The Sale of Longs Peak Inn

World War II  [1992]

Murphy’s Law and the Computer

The South St. Vrain Canyon


The Hazards of Volunteering

Crime in Our Valley


On the Death of Charles Eagle Plume

Can We All Get Along?

A Partridge in a Pear Tree

Lost Horizon [1993]


Rumors About a Visit by the Pope


More About Fences


The Visit of Pope John Paul II

Forest Fires

The New Sewage System

The Snow Pool

The Good Old Days [1994]

The WIND’s 20th Anniversary

The Bunce School

The Shooting Gallery

The Estes Park Museum

Our Government

U.S. West Takes a Hit

The Year of the Hummingbirds

A New “Yield” Sign

Growth in Allenspark

Private Telephones?

The Salvation Army

Creation Science [1995]

Devolutionizing Big Government



Fort D.A. Russell

Domestic Terrorism

Old and New

Barney Graves

Life in the Wilderness

What’s In a Name?

Arthur C. Clarke


The Estes Park Trail-Gazette Columns:

July 1983


Estes Cone

Johnny Grant

Observations in Estes Park

The Bath House


The Sutherland’s Ice House

How Old is Charles Eagle Plume?


Christmas Trees

Tree Murder

Mountain Driving


Mail Boxes

More About Mail Boxes

“Are you related to ....?”


An Accident

The Wild Cat

A July Reunion

A Visit to Baldpate Inn

Opening Cabins


The Times, They Have Changed

Death and Transfiguration

The Population Explosion

The March of Time

Faith-Based Social Services

Looking for Pitch

Recent Writings I

Recent Writings II

Recent Writings III

Recent Writings IV

Recent Writings V

Recent Writings VI



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