We had just come from the Blue Mesa Cutoff trail and it was a quick trip on the pavement of Highway 149 to get to the south end of the Alpine Plateau trail. It was easy to find, and judging by the far end it was going to be a much better trail than the one we had come from.
On the south end, it started as a rocky climb up a gradual hill, too narrow for passing. We climbed fairly rapidly up switchbacks, with narrow sections featuring fairly big dropoffs to one side. It was pretty, but we were still in the trees.
We came across another vehicle, which was a bit surprising. They were going slower, so they let us pass. At the top of the main switchbacks we came to an area marked Soldier Summit. This is where the trail turned from one going primarily west to one going primarily north.
The trail flattened out and got wider and more mellow. There were hardly any rocks in the trail, compared to the many rocks from before. The scenery also changed. We moved between patches of trees, with big views between them.
The trail eventually turned into residential areas, and the houses were huge and impressive. We wondered how they got their electricity and other amenities. There was also a big bed and breakfast out there, and it looked really nice.
When we came out to the trailhead on the north end, we parked to call the places where we were staying in Silverton. It looked like we'd have just enough time to run our third trail, Owl Creek Pass, before checking in. Silverton is a small, small town, and you can't check in in the middle of the night.
We didn't need to air up because the Owl Creek Pass trailhead was fairly close by, just a few miles down the pavement. Alpine Plateau was a good trail, though the fun part was definitely on the south end. Off to the next adventure!