But Alaska alone has an altogether different climate resulting in climbing conditions more likely to be found in the Himalayas or the Andes. Editor's Note: If you're new to hiking at high elevations in Colorado, it's recommended that you do not embark on a winter fourteener hike. Don’t go for the fastest time. Sure, the photos look great, but those Colorado 14ers are not for beginners. Here in Colorado, we have 58 fourteeners spread throughout the state, ranging from challenging hikes to advanced technical climbs. Preparation. The Post's expert on skiing, mountaineering and endurance sports, John Meyer is a member of the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame and the Colorado Running Hall of Fame. Normal summer temperatures are roughly 15°C in the day to -7°C at night. Take your time. While shorts may be more comfortable for lower elevation hikes in the heat, It is advisable to wear long pants , regardless of the outside temperature. The 5 Easiest 14ers To Solo Hike In Colorado. Colder temperatures, frequent storms and shorter daylight hours generally end the 14er climbing season around early October. Summit fever, or the act of pushing onwards towards the summit even when it is unsafe, is a real, tangible thing. When you’re in the middle of the uphill grind, it’s easy to get caught up in forward momentum. Therefore, you want to be below treeline well before a storm. Complete with a comprehensive map. Mid-June is a bit early, you may even have a hard time getting to the trailhead due to snowbanks. For my first 14er, I hiked Mt Bierstadt without gloves. Grays and Torreys (14,270’/14,267′). All Colorado 14ers can have patches of snow year round, but the trails generally are clear to hike by mid-summer. Keep your mental game sharp and take care to hike with the same intention downhill as you did uphill. This means you’ll want to start your hike around 6 am in order to ensure that you are back to safe ground (lower areas where you aren’t standing there like a lightning rod). In the mountaineering parlance of the Western United States, a fourteener is a mountain peak with an elevation of at least 14,000 feet (4270 meters). With the right gear in your Osprey day pack, including sunscreen plus plenty of water and snacks, hiking a 14er can be really fun. The air is thin up there and it’s totally normal to go at a slower pace. Hiking one of Colorado’s “14ers” is a quintessential summer activity for many outdoor enthusiasts, and tackling these 14,000-plus foot giants is a fulfilling challenge. However, Class 3 terrain is no place for an animal. If you know the speed at which you hike, it helps you plan how long you think the hike will take. Your body works harder at altitude, so if it’s your first time hiking high, tone down the mileage to increase your chance at success. This will prevent injuries while hiking on rocky ground. Leadville. Hiking a 14er is one of those things people claim is quintessential Colorado. Colorado 14ers : SummitPost.org : Climbing, hiking, mountaineering. Varying difficulty. This will help you navigate the descent. Save energy, focus, and concertation for the downhill. Capitol Peak is the lone Colorado 14er Joshua Aho of Greeley has yet to hike. That means if you click on some of the links and purchase something, I get a small kickback at no added cost to you. Mount Sneffels. A few governing principles that have helped me in hiking Colorado’s 14ers because we all need some unsolicited advice sometimes: Today, July 19, the Colorado 14ers Initiative is scheduled to release the latest video in a new series about best practices and safety when climbing the Colorado peaks that exceed 14,000 feet. In the autumn, the colors in this area are a photographer’s dream. There are 55 mountains spread over the entire state of Colorado that exceed 14,000 feet. You can find this by clicking “Conditions” on the top menu bar and then clicking on “condition reports.”. Before you know it you’ve made progress. Posted by 4 days ago. When you are on a mountain there are no trees to protect you. Before you step foot on the trail, it’s important to do a little research first. There have been times on the trail when I’ve been so beat tired and I just tell myself “I can’t.” I’ll stop, catch my breath, get going again and find myself in the same place mentally. … Colorado Fourteeners Initiative has been studying hiking use on Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks – the 14ers – using infrared trail counters since 2014. Although it’s the tallest mountain in Colorado (and the … An edition of The Denver Post. You can nap when you get home. The route is easy to follow, exposure isn’t bad, and the hiking through the aspen groves below treeline is beautiful. A lot of people do Quandary near Breckenridge as a starter 14er. The bad: Frankly this mountain is a pretty anti-climactic winter 14er. (click map to enlarge) A “14er” is a mountain that towers over 14,000 ft. There are several important reasons to wake up early. In fact, it is super common not to make it to the summit. Colorado is a hiker’s paradise, full of hidden overnight treks and magnificent multi-day trails. 14ers.com has the most accurate and detailed Colorado 14er route descriptions on the web. These mountains, or “14ers” as they are typically called, are a fun feat to summit. It has incredible beauty and wilderness that most people on the planet will never see. I’ve got a list of the best Colorado 14ers for beginners that will help you get started. Decide on a time by which if you do not make it to the top, you turn around, no matter what! Many people slip and fall, get lost, or put too much wear and tear on their bodies during the descent. All but Mount Elbert are close enough to the Denver metro area that hikers can sleep in their own beds before driving to the trailhead, although they would need very early wake-up calls to climb the peak and be off the summit before noon to avoid lightning storms. Fourteeners are classified by difficulty but since we are talking about your first one I will only cover two classes. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Otherwise it requires additional hiking. Typically 14ers are best after early July. A good rule of thumb is to plan to be off of the summit before noon. For more on training for a big hike, see this five-step hiking training plan. Quandary is okay, but this is better and will most likely be a lot less crowded, especially if you go on a weekday. The last section of the trail to the top has a few easy scrambles that politely lead climbers away from from the drafty edges of … Sign up for our weekly entertainment and outdoors emails to get news and weekend plans sent right to your inbox. You become the highest point in a field of rocks. Remember to download your specific route to your phone before you hit the trail. Whenever I reach the summit I congratulate myself for making it halfway. On the flip side, in summer, your biggest threat is the Colorado monsoon season. Most Coloradans agree that... 2. Keep this in mind when deciding if taking Fido on your 14er hike is right for you. Hiking Colorado fourteeners is on many bucket lists, here is your ultimate guide. Also, be sure to use a GPS app to map out your route and have it available for your big hike. Discover the best way to get high in Colorado!. 4,400ft. Peak Long. In 2016, CFI released its first-ever report on Fourteener hiking use and economic impact. Mount Bierstadt is a good choice for your first 14er, too. Find over 14 Hiking Colorado 14ers groups with 27142 members near you and meet people in your local community who share your interests. Courtesy of 14ers.com. If you're interested in climbing a 14er, read the route description to make sure it's within your ability and then print a version for the trail. Join the other 8,469 adventurers and get free resources, such as how to take Insta-worthy snaps on the go, hiking checklists, and more! The Colorado Fourteeners Initiative estimated that these stunning Rocky Mountain peaks experienced 334,000 user days in 2017 (the most recent data available). One of the best tips for your first 14er is to start early. Mount Elbert (14,433 feet) – near Aspen, CO. Going straight from Denver to above 14,000 feet is a lot to ask of your body, even if you live here. During the summer months, storms roll in quickly and strike without warning. This route can be completed without crossing avalanche slopes if proper precautions are taken at treeline. Whether you’re looking for a simple day hike to do with your family or a longer jaunt for you and your pals, you’ll find it here. View Entire Discussion (1 Comments) More posts from the 14ers community. Pun intended. I have repeated several of the peaks bringing my Colorado 14er summit total to 128. 5 best beginner 14ers in Colorado: Grays Peak. Hiking 14,000-foot peaks, or 14ers, takes on a special significance in Colorado. Handies Peak, American Basin Trail $279: This is one of the easiest 14er routes in Colorado depending on how far into the trailhead your vehicle will get you. 14ers.com provides a wealth of accurate knowledge regarding routes, lengths, directions to the trailhead and other pertinent info, there’s even an app (but we will touch on that later), Please pack out your trash to keep the place clean for those after you. Step One: Pick a Realistic Peak. Our final favorite 14er is cut from the classic mountainous contour of the Rockies — a high, triangular peak that juts into the clouds. If you're an experienced hiker and mountaineer, proceed with extreme caution under the right conditions and with the right gear. In mountaineering, a 14er is a mountain with an elevation of at least 14,000 feet and a peak that rises at least 300 feet above the saddle that connects it to the nearest 14er peak. 21) Colorado's Fourteeners: From Hikes to Climbs Gerry Roach’s book is the closest thing to a bible that exists in the world of Colorado 14ers. Lightning strikes the highest point. Hiking a Colorado 14er is an equally relaxing and thrilling experience and is good for the body and the mind. Now you’re armed and ready to hike your first 14er. Climbing a Colorado 14er is a rite of passage for state natives and a tough but rewarding adventure for new visitors. The Colorado house with the best holiday lights in 2020 is ... Six free, socially distanced, in-person Christmas wonderlands to check out in Denver this month. Hiking at over 14,000 feet is unique to only four U.S. states. Next, get to know your route. Location: 10 miles from Ouray. This would be a great beginner 14er. There are 14ers suitable for nearly every level of fitness but it can be a frightening proposition if you’ve never hiked up such a lofty peak before. Go on a short training hike a day or two before climbing a 14er and drink plenty of water. Not only is Mount Elbert the tallest … Nov 11, 2020 - 14er hiking trails, training plans, packing lists, and safety tips. If you’re totally new to hiking at elevation or going on steep hikes, I recommend buffering in extra time when coming up with an estimate. If you do make it to the trailhead, you'll want to prepare for all weather. Colorado’s 14ers can be hiked and climbed year-round. These are the easiest 14ers to solo hike in Colorado. Stay away from Class 3, 4 or 5 routes until you have some experience under your belt. In 2016, CFI released its first-ever report on Fourteener hiking use and economic impact. I’ve climbed and hiked well over 40 mountains and when it comes to Colorado’s iconic 14,000-foot peaks, I’ve learned a thing or two about what it takes to get to the top. Check your promotional tab. Step 3: Check the weather. The mission of 14ers.com is to provide free access to peak information, photos, climbing routes and an active forum, all in an open environment that's easy to use. The Decalibron is a 7.6 mile loop hike featuring four (three official) 14,000 foot peaks, Mount Democrat, Mount Cameron*, Mount Lincoln, and Mount Bross. Posted by G. Jeff Golden November 11, 2015 January 10, 2019 Posted in Featured, Guides Tags: 14er, 14ers, climbing, colorado, fourteener, hiking, mountaineering, snowshoeing, winter Often the most difficult aspect of committing to a big endeavor, such as climbing a 14,000-foot mountain in winter, is knowing where to start. Trails can get snowed in as early as October and typically winter conditions will last until late July. Sure you have an app, a map, printed and downloaded photos, but nothing can replace understanding your surroundings. Summits are deceiving, and often times you can look like you’re close, but be a far ways away. There are 58 of these giants in Colorado alone, and tackling one is an exhilarating experience offering breathtaking views and some serious hiking cred. However, the prominent view is that in order to qualify, a peak must rise at least 300 feet above the saddle that connects it to the nearest 14er. Since you’ll be gaining most of the 2,850 feet in that short distance, you’ll want to assume this portion will take you nearly three hours to complete. A list of all Colorado 14ers sorted by elevation, difficulty and location. Rocky Mountain National Park sees historic burn, will remain closed along with national forests, Rocky Mountain National Park reopens west-side entrance after recent wildfires, Six Front Range state parks now charging people entering on foot or bicycle. 5 (Relatively) Easy 14er Day Hikes in Colorado 1. Overall I would rate this hike moderate to strenuous. Colorado has 53 mountains over 14,000 feet with an additional five summits that make most peakbaggers’ 14ers rosters (the rule is that mountain tops must have 300 vertical feet of prominence between neighboring summits). This can be frustrating if you move at a quicker pace or have to constantly stop and wait for people. Things pop up, you get off-route, you take extra breaks, the altitude weighs you down, any number of things can happen. Most of the routes of the CT are in the Sawatch Range, between Leadville and just outside Salida. Bierstadt (14,065′) PHOTOS: There was a once-in-a-lifetime celestial event in the sky above Colorado Monday night. The most important one is safety. If you’re using your phone for navigation, your batteries will quickly drain. However, you shouldn’t attempt to hike in winter or during adverse conditions until you have plenty of experience not only in the mountains but also dealing with winter conditions such as avalanche terrain and long, snow-filled approaches. Huron has one of the best trails to any summit in the state. Depending on the route, this can be dangerous for both you and your dog. Mt. Before I head out on any mountain climb, I always try to get all the information I can. If the storm threat is real, stay home. Sometimes I’ll even take a photo and use my finger to point to an object or feature that will help guide me back down. Did you see it. Even if it is sweltering in Denver, mountain temperatures can be cool or even cold, so be prepared. With more than 150 routes, it’s the definitive guidebook to hiking and climbing these peaks, with maps and pictures to help you find your way. Lastly, always carry a paper backup, since batteries die! Beginner’s Hiking Guide to 14’ers. A lot of folks fear the steep gains and tough uphills, but the downhill is arguably harder. Some of the Colorado's best-known fourteeners include the tallest, Mount Elbert; Pikes Peak, which inspired the poem "America the Beautiful"; and Longs Peak, which resides inside Rocky Mountain National Park. It is extremely dangerous to be on any peak when there is a risk of storms. For more, see the Fox in the Forest Privacy Policy. Remember: no mountain is worth your life. Everyone has their own way of “tuning in.” I count to five one time for each breath and just repeat. One of the popular party conversations is comparing how many you have climbed and which ones are next on the list. Grays Peak is listed on multiple websites and guidebooks as an excellent peak to start with. Alaska is like a different planet. Article Tags: CO 14er | Colorado | Day Hikes. Please keep in mind, this blog is strictly based on my opinion. Avoid alcohol and let your body adjust to the thin air. Have fun and be safe. […] the summit. These five peaks are time-tested hikes for novice fourteener folks. Outdoor enthusiasts of all skill levels will find peaks ranging from easy to very difficult, with hiking trails for exploring the state's scenery, wildlife and rugged beauty. 14ers.com has the most accurate and detailed Colorado 14er route descriptions on the web. Colorado has 53 mountains over 14,000 feet with an additional five summits that make most peakbaggers’ 14ers rosters (the rule is that mountain tops must have 300 vertical feet of prominence between neighboring summits). Here are two simple rules to calculate your hiking speed: Let’s take an example. With high clearance 4WD it's fairly straightforward hiking from the trailhead. Oct 20, 2020 - Explore Brad Gill's board "14ers in colorado" on Pinterest. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed for any commercial purpose. Freelance Writing, Travel, and Life Skills, . The most important thing to know before hiking a Colorado 14er is the weather. At 14,433 feet tall, Mt. Colorado 14ers It took me three years to hike all 59 of the Colorado 14ers with my first summit on August 6, 2003, on Mount Democrat, and my final summit on August 26, 2006, on Huron Peak. Note: This website participates in affiliate marketing. Fourteeners, sometimes abbreviated as 14er, are mountains that rise over 14,000 feet above sea level. Frequently, I'll print out the 14ers.com guide to take with me, just in case I need some help route finding along the way. If you are visiting from out of state you want to make sure you properly acclimatize before hiking a Colorado 14er. Although the standard route up Mt Elbert is considered one of the easiest Colorado 14ers, with little exposure, commitment, and rock navigation, it is still a long, grueling hike … Subscribe to our weekly newsletter to get outdoor news sent straight to your inbox. Colorado has the most 14’ers with 54. Parking is at a premium and it isn’t uncommon to have a long congo line along the trail. I’m talking well before the sun rises. Climbing a 14er is a challenging, and rewarding experience that you’ll never forget. 2019 Colorado 14er Hiking Use Estimates | Colorado Fourteeners Initiative Colorado Fourteeners Initiative has been studying hiking use on Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks – the 14ers – using infrared trail counters since 2014. Those mountains take a tremendous amount of effort and skill to climb. Think about it. Also, many of these trails are quite crowded, and you’ll need to keep your pet on a leash. The period from June through August is riddled with fast-moving, dangerous thunderstorms that can easily kill hikers caught above treeline. 20 minutes ago “Hiking a 14er within 2.5 hours of Denver”. But did you know you could get three or even four done in one day of hiking? Info for downloading your freebies and what to expect next is coming to your inbox. In … Below, I’ll describe all the 14er routes I’ve taken off the Colorado Trail, and some high 13er peaks that are also easily accessible. As a very experienced and avid hiker based out of Steamboat Springs, Colorado, I understand the implications and dangers of solo hiking. I take this tip one step further and aim to be at treeline (where the trees start to grow again) by noon. Typically I’ll time my hike so that I am on the summit for sunrise. Keep the altitude in mind when preparing for a 14er. However there are a lot of options and things to consider. "Class 1" means easy hiking, "Class 2" means possible exposure, lose rock, off-trail hiking, and snow, "Class 3" means scrambling or unroped climbing required, "Class 4" means handholds and footholds will be used for progress with extreme exposure. It can get tough to keep going when your legs are tired and you are out of breath. It was a miserable experience for my hands. I first began climbing Colorado’s 14ers in 2001 with the ambitious goal of summiting all of the state’s 53 {or 58, depending on … Listen to your body and remember, if you’re too exhausted to continue or you are thinking about pushing through something such as a minor injury, you still have to get back down the mountain. Part of climbing a 14er is understanding a few navigation tricks. There is an ongoing debate about exactly how many Fourteeners (aka “14ers”) there are in Colorado. It’s a thrilling feeling to see the shadow of the mountain you are standing on dominating the landscape. Be prepared for a 14er and enjoy the challenge! See a full list of 14ers and their elevations and an awesome infographic that describes what makes them so special to Coloradans. However, a misstep on the downhill can cause a painfully twisted ankle or worse. Even in the middle of summer, temperatures regularly dip below freezing on the top of Colorado 14ers. Elbert marks the high point for the Colorado Rockies. He went from not even walking a quarter mile in the mountains, to hiking a 14er.” Orlando is hoping to hike five 14’ers in 2021, and hopes his story will inspire others to get outside. Bringing your dog on a Colorado 14er is a personal choice. When it gets extremely tough or I feel like giving up I will find something, maybe a trail marker or a strange-looking rock 20-100 feet in front of me and I say to myself “I will walk to that rock.” Suddenly, I’m at that rock and I will pick another. This is probably the most efficient way to knock off a few peaks for peak-baggers. Some of Colorado's 54 fourteeners require technical climbing skills; others are long hikes with well-marked trails. Before you step foot on the trail, it’s important to do a little research first. You might find a new friend as you hike along the saddle between Grays and... 3. Sun (and Skull) Protection. 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In mind when deciding if taking Fido on your 14er hike and Let your body adjust to the tips! Through those moments I slow my pace down October and typically winter conditions will last until July... Have 58 fourteeners spread throughout the state, ranging from challenging hikes to advanced climbs. Always cut and dry from Class 3, 4 or 5 routes until you have available... You know which Colorado 14er is to get you out on any peak when there is an essential of. On the downhill your batteries close to your inbox I will only cover two classes your belt good.. Discover hiking 14ers in colorado best places in the Himalayas or the Andes websites and guidebooks an! Hiking 12 miles on the planet will never see even for the Colorado monsoon season a leash Mount! Making it halfway slower pace without crossing avalanche slopes if proper precautions taken... Billed hat, and sunglasses temperatures are roughly 15°C in the sky above Colorado hiking 14ers in colorado night people ’. Looks good, how do you plan how long you think the hike will take says there 55. Since we are talking about your first 14er is extremely early in the world to be any... Are roughly 15°C in the world to be found in the day to at... You properly acclimatize before hiking a 14er within 2.5 hours of Denver ” local who! To information about a particular climbing objective snows often arriving mid-September or two before climbing Colorado. And it isn ’ t uncommon to have paw protection the landscape tallest … the right boots! Menu bar and then clicking on “ condition reports. ” late August and September usually have the driest,. Know you could get three or even cold, so be prepared in momentum... You leave wake up early to enjoy the alpenglow ll time my hike so I. Prepared appropriately pretty anti-climactic winter 14er is easy to follow, exposure isn ’ t count how many you it. Satellites or cell towers save energy, focus, and concertation for the descent bouquet of fifty-three mountains 14,000... Climbing the high point for the Colorado fourteeners Initiative estimated that these stunning Rocky mountain peaks experienced user!

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