People get distracted by mountains, particularly the Rocky Mountains. They are, as I’ve said to friends, distracting like a pair of boobies. You can’t look away no matter how hard you try. Perhaps I have a deep-seated interest in tatas (who doesn’t, amirite?). But really, my passion has more to do with the Rocky’s raw beauty.
This past Saturday I climbed my first 14er. For those who don’t know, a 14er is a mountain peak over 14,000-feet. Colorado has dozens of them. The altitude on a 14er is enough to make breathing laborious. Add in hiking at a steep grade and… well, yeah… it was a similar intensity to running a marathon.
So, I climbed Quandary Peak. 14,265 feet above sea level. I climbed it with two fantastic friends. I met goats, a pika, and I sledded 500ft down a humongous snow gully on my butt.
I dislike the overuse of “awesome.” But I can honestly say this experience was indeed awesome.
We started the ascent around 10,500ft. We gained a thousand feet each mile.
But as you can see, the view was well worth the exertion.
Quandary presented a couple false summits. The above picture was not one of them. However, you CAN see the summit from here. I called bullshit when my hiking partners pointed it out. And to be honest I was discouraged. “That’s a looooong way,” I lamented.
Then we came upon this mountain goat and I forgot about the distance. This dude was not shy. He got close enough to ram us with those gnarly horns. Last thing I needed was an extra the hole in the backside, so we moved on–cautiously.
This little guy–a pika–popped out of the rocks. He didn’t want to go home with me unless I gave him a snack. Next time I will bring food and then… then I’ll own a pika.
The view from the top. Is there anything better? There were several people at the top, which was very nice. Party on the summit! The party was so exciting that three women ripped off their shirts and bared their boobies to the mountains. I was half tempted to join them until I remembered that it was cold as a witch’s tit.
Yep, that’s me (with my top on). I made it. I didn’t die. I didn’t need supplemental oxygen. I did it from sheer will and grit. And I will do it again.