I came about going to the Colorado Trip for 3 simple reasons: it involved high mountains, company was promising, and I had never been to the States. The whole reason behind it all, however, was to accompany Andy Murphy on his last efforts to conquer all 54 of the Fourteeners (mountains over 14,000 feet or 4267m in the USA).
We had planned roughly 12 days of camping and fourteener bagging, which would fall short due to weather and some chill-out days.
Starting off with an easy gentle one, we headed for Mt. Bierdstadt. Easy as it was, it knocked us out for a full day as we were all suffering from some heavy headache. Next on the list, was Mt. Princeton, waiting for us at the foot of a nerve-wrecking, heart-stopping and stressing 4 wheel drive track that easily took some years off our lives. Never mind the extra ones we deliberately took with all the booze consumed that night.
Coming next was the scenic Maroon Lake and 3 days camping at the feet of the Maroon Bells. This was definitely the highlight of the trip for me, as clichéd as it may be, but however way you look at the Bells, they are a marvellous pair of mountains of great pyramid symmetry. And not only are they a gift to the eyes, but also to your body and mind as you make your way to the top.
Weather started closing in at this point, and as thunder and lightning increased, so decreased our options for un-bagged fourteeners for Andy. We gave away Capitol Peak in exchange for a more accessible Mt of the Holy Cross, conveniently located closer to Denver.
A total of 8 tent nights, 2 motel nights, 5 peaks and 1 hot springs day marked the end of an unforgettable experience for 3 of us, as we left the remaining 2 to keep up the fun for a couple of extra nights in the hills.
- Miguel Alonso