It’s been 8 or 9 years since I defeated my first 14er here in Colorado and I’ve been saying more than a few times since then that I’ve wanted to do another or a few more. And finally on this day, Sunday August 18th, I got my second 14er, Mt. Bierstadt elevation 14060 ft.
My first 14er was Mt. Sherman(14035 ft) and I dont remember much about that day except being on top and the incredible views from up there, as I had never done anything like it before and to be on top of the world(pardon me Everest) was an incredible feeling and I enjoyed the moment and will for a lifetime. The other thing that I remember about that day and I still kick myself about, was that I didnt bring my camera that day to capture any and every moment possible, (idiot!).
Bierstadt has been on my radar forever. You hear people say it’s one of the easiest 14ers to do, blah blah blah etc. Lots of people hike Bierstadt each weekend and when I say lots, I mean LOTS! The best way I can describe it would be that if every hiker on the trail to the summit of Bierstadt were of Catholic faith, then Bierstadt itself would surely be The Vatican. There’s just that many people! (My apologies to those of Catholic faith if I have offended you in any way. Surely I’m only making a comparison in the numerous amount of hikers on this trail on any given Saturday or Sunday). See pictures below from that Sunday.
The day started out great! Sunshine, few clouds and very little wind at all. Started out on the trail at 8:30, reached the summit 3 hours and 15 minutes later. There is no such thing as an easy 14er. I dont care what the guide books tell you. If you’re not used to being at high altitude especially. If you arent a person who is active regularly, you will find it most difficult. The air is much thinner and your heart and lungs will work like they never have before, which is a good thing. I’d rather they work hard, than not at all. Dont be discouraged from attempting a 14er, the effort will definitely be worth it once you reach the summit!
So after reaching the summit, we weren’t up there but for 10 or 15 mins before we heard a rumble of thunder off in the distance. No time for lunch, it was time to get off the mountain I had just conquered as fast as possible! Down about a quarter of the way and it began to rain, almost a drizzle for a little while. Then further down the rain turned to hail. But not to worry, to myself this is all a part of the adventure! As it is here in Colorado almost a mile or so from the trailhead the sun makes another appearance. All and all it was a great day, I bagged my 2nd 14er, which I’m happy about! I just hope it doesnt take me another 8 or 9 years before attempting my next one!