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14,229ft; my experience climbing a mountain

Lindsey Rainwater

Summit of Mt. Shavano

Living in Colorado has certain 'rights of passage' one of those being climbing a 14er, and last weekend I joined the club!

Here in CO we have 53 different 14,000ft mountains, to see a full listing checkout 14ers.com.

Mt. Shavano

I want to share my experience with you, it was realy remarkable!

Before I dive into the details here's the way the day began for me. So there is this funny little indicator we all have, called adrenaline... I started out the hike, heart a racing and completely over thinking what was about to un fold over the next seven plus hours of climbing. I had done my research, talked to anyone in my path that had gone before me, well basically, over analyzed the crap out of the whole thing. About an hour into the climb after some intense mental battle, my heart calmed and two hours later I was finding humor in my state of mind and body that first part of the journey. Goes to show, our bodies are not our road block. We are capable of a whole host of activities, if we can get our mind to rest long enough to accomplish them.

me, on the trail

Back to the details, a couple of my friends are expert climbers and they did such a great job preparing me and leading me through the climb to the peak of Mt. Shavano .

We started at 4:00am, the first hour plus was led by moonlight, so beautiful and creepy! Thank goodness for flashlights .We reached tree line right at sunrise, what a breathtaking way to see the sun warming the day!

sunrise, at tree lineFrom there we carried on, it takes anywhere between 6-8 hours to hike a mountain of this size and elevation gain, and at some points I felt extremely winded, light headed and found myself reaching to the power of the mountain to guide me through. It's not easy, however summiting the peak was well worth it!

The last hour of the climb to the summit was rock to rock foot placement and technical attention to detail to ensure I didn't fall backwards. But let me tell you, getting up to those last few rocks that exposed the beauty infront of me, TOTALLY worth it! What a sight, I can't even put it into words, to be surrounded by peaks and valleys of the rocky mountains, to be up in the sky like that is truly unreal!

me, at the top of the mountain

Once we got off the trail head, I was toast! looking down at my Polar Heart rate monitor I had burned over 4,000 calories and my body was screaming to be refueled!

What a remarkable experience! If you have the opportunity to get to Colorado and take on one of these animals, DO IT! You will remember your experience forever, and if you are anything like me, you will be planning your next adventure promptly after to get back onto a peak.

Thank you for reading, what kind of adventures have you taken on? I would love to hear about them.

Respond here, or send me a message!

-Lindsey