My second attempt at a 14’er.
Colorado has 58 mountain peaks exceeding 14,000 feet. Hence the term 14’er. Colorado has the most 14’ers of any state in the US. Climbing to the peak of a mountain that is almost 3 miles above sea level can be a most amazing feat.
I recently had the opportunity again to hike Quandary Peak. Quandary Peak is the highest summit of the Ten Mile Range in the Rocky Mountains of North America. Located in Summit County, Colorado just 20 minutes from downtown Breckenridge, the Peak has a summit elevation of 14,265. While my first attempt to summit was unsuccessful, my last was a success. This was by far the hardest hike of my life. There is no such thing as an easy 14’er. This sucker is steep. The last 0.80-mile climbs 1,100 feet. So be prepared for a long day out there. Pack your patience and enjoy the challenge. My parking lot to summit and back adventure took 5 hours, 46 minutes and 9 seconds to complete.
Here are some of the pics from my first successful summit of a Colorado 14’er.
Headed on the highway past Breck to our hiking for the day
Above tree line at Breck is where it’s at . .
We have arrived at the parking lot base of the Quandary Trail, see that peak? Yep, that’s where we were headed
Parking lot selfie before the hike begins
Time to walk along that ridgeline all the way to the top
And the fun begins!
Not a bad idea to check the map out before heading out.
Huge trees at the bottom but as we work our way up there are no more trees at all
Great clear day helps for good views
The vastness of the valley
Lush and green up here
Yep, she is ready!
Clouds rolling in
And the ground starts getting rocky above tree line
And the views just keep getting better and better
Selfie amongst the rocks-do I look exhausted?
Clouds rolled in and gave us a little mountain shower making the rocks slippery. We heard from a few folks that had already been to the top that we missed the short hail storm at the top.
Don’t get too close to the edge!
A little snow patch
Wild flowers literally grow everywhere
We walked straight through a cloud inversion
Yep that straight line is the path we took up…and the one we go down
Here’s a tip- if you hike a 14er make a sign before you go so you have proof at the top! Thanks to the nice couple that gave me theirs!
We did it! The cloud inversion made it impossible to see anything but pillows of clouds at the top.
And then came the king of the mountain…the mountain goat
He was not thrilled to be sharing the top with us so he decided to show us who was boss!
Down the ridge-line we go
The views were so different depending on the altitude along the hike.
We realized why the big goat was following us down from the peak – the catch up with the other mountain goats along the path!
As long as we kept moving this nice family of mountain goats did not seem to mind us being so close to them along the path.
And then there was grass and trees again!
See that cloud inversion at the top of the mountain – that’s what we were above when we reached the peak!
Hiking these beauties leaves you exhausted, invigorated, and yearning for more! Can’t wait to do another 14’er soon!
Contact me if you would like information on hiking 14’ers or just hiking in general. I would be glad to share my knowledge with you!
READER FEEDBACK, COMMENTS & PICS
It was a little slow in the feedback department. In-boxes were on the lighter side this week. I know many of you are on summer vacation or as they call it in Europe-holiday. Love that! I digress. Anyway, I’ve seen your pictures all over The Book aka Facebook and they look amazing. Enjoy the rest of your vacation. Summer ends in seven weeks. School and work are waiting for you.
I really appreciate any and all user submitted content. So don’t be bashful and send what you got.
Received this from one reader:
Thank you. And this was a nice reply to our automated blog email distribution:
Just came home to this welcomed message.
Wow. That’s almost like saying I like telemarketers. If I didn’t know you and really believe that you like me, I’d think you are full of bs. Anyway, I always appreciate this:
WEB SITE UPGRADE
Notice a different home page? We recently upgraded our website. Like it, Hate it, have any thoughts? Let us know. Maybe we can make it even better .
We have seen more daily traffic since our upgrade and even received some feedback directly related to it. We have gotten views from Canada, Ireland, China, Netherlands and Azerbaijan. Nice!
Wow …huge upgrade. I like the cartoon.
Thank you. Appreciate these kind words as well
The new website looks really good BTW!
BTW thank you. And while there is some resemblance not sure how to answer this question
That cartoon pic of you?
Wasn’t supposed to be . . . but it sure is awesome.
CM MAN aka Jerry.
HIKE & MOUNTAIN BIKE CONDITIONS
Resorts are still open. I was at Beaver Creek just two weeks ago. Yes, you read that correct. And it was awesome. It’s an amazing time to visit. Like hiking? Check. Like biking? Check. Now’s the time.
Hiking, biking, climbing, walking, bird watching, wild flower finding, summit attempting. It’s all here to be had this summer. It’s all great fun and adventure. Conditions are really great this time of the year, especially for those who don’t like the snow and cold weather. Do I even know you?
If you need help with lodging, especially last-minute, reach out to us at:
We know people. And we may be able to help you.
Here’s a reservation link to Creekside @ Beaver Creek. Michael Simmons and his crew will take good care of you.
We offer all-inclusive resort guiding for you and your family at a discounted rate. Our guides can handle from 1 to 6 people. The day will be customized and tailored to your group and groups needs. A fun day is in store. If this is something you have an interest in? Please reach out, we’ll make it happen. Some feedback we received from tours:
Had an amazing time!!
and this one
It really was an amazing ski vacation!
Thank you. I had a blast. I look forward to it again next year. This always makes me feel good:
Great day on the mountain. Thank you for being so very patient.
as well as this gem:
Thanks for the pics. They are awesome. Thanks for capturing those precious moments.
Glad I could help in making special memories. Received this in my inbox:
We had the best time ever!! Thank you for navigating the mountain for us, for the snow shoe tour, for teaching us how to ski better and for being so wonderful and patient and welcoming to our entire crew!!
No, Thank you. Hope to see you on the slopes soon.
We love writing about the mountains and mountain activities, but even more, we love sharing it with everyone-with all of you. Want to find out what it’s all about? It’s not to early to book for next season. We are already taking reservations for 2018/2019 season.
Early discounts available now. We promise you and your family will have a great time.
Dude, I think they have a lane just for you. Anyway, street rules apply. Careful on those bikes friends.
Who couldn’t love a great puppy pic. Keep em coming.
Been way to long friends.
Glenfiddich Blue Label – Nice Leprechaun glasses bro. Magically Delicious!
A little bird watching in your backyard!
Beautiful Lake Dillon – great views all year round!
Good to see you got out there man.
THAT’S ALL FOLKS!!!!
Thanks again for reading this blog. I hope you all have a great start to your week. Until next time, love one another and be kind to each other. Get out there, The Thrill of the Mountain is waiting for you.
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