This is the only post that survived my previous blog. I couldn’t resist. It was an experience of a lifetime and I just had to include it.
Pikes Peak had been closed the previous three days due to heavy snowfall and ice. We were at 14,110 ft elevation, it was 25 degrees, and the winds were gusting to 30 mph.
It was three weeks ago, but I still start hyperventilating when I talk about it. My sister Nancy and I took a cross country road trip together in August and we had a blast. The highlight was definitely when we road mountain bikes down from the top of Pikes Peak to the bottom. We went from 14,000 to 6,000 elevation in just twenty miles. The guides told us at the end that we were one of the fastest groups of the summer, and were traveling at 35 miles per hour at times! Yikes!
I happened to pick up this brochure, “Pikes Peak By Bike – The Ultimate Ride”, as we were getting ready to head out of Manitou Springs, Colorado. My sister is 56 and I’m 48, and after looking at the brochure Nancy said, “Let’s do this! Come on, we won’t want to do this in 5 or 10 years, and we’re right here. So let’s go for it!”
I don’t know if it was signing those waivers at 6 a.m., the fact that we’re not really mountain bikers, noticing the unpaved and gravelly roads we were going to be biking down on the drive up, or maybe just the fact that our brains weren’t getting enough oxygen, but by the time we got to the top, we were scared.
Thankfully we stopped several times along the way to take in the view and catch our breath. It was wild to look up at the peak and see how far we had come.
If I had thought ahead of time, I would have duct taped my video camera to my chest or something. Now that would have been an exciting video with actual footage while flying down the mountain. But guess what? I needed both hands on the brakes at all times or I would have died! Below is a very short, very poorly done video. Just give me a break on this one because when you’re scared and having trouble breathing, video production always suffers.