My dad was in town last weekend, and he didn’t realize that he was in for a weekend of physical activity. We had him walking to and around the dog park, walking to the bus and around downtown and the ultimate challenge: hiking up a small mountain in Colorado.
We wanted to take him hiking somewhere and found a nice looking hike on Bald Mountain in book of easy day hikes. It offered a great view at the summit, was short and wasn’t a there and back hike where you had to re-walk the same trail. The only question mark was this pesky 240 ft of elevation gain. I wasn’t sure exactly sure how bad that would be.
So we packed up on the day of the hike, drove to Boulder and up some serious inclines to get to the trail head and finally set out on our hike. The first thing we see is a warning about mountain lions. The sign says to throw stones and sticks at mountain lions you run into to scare them away. I wasn’t too worried though. I’m confident that Kuma would have tried to hump any mountain lions until they ran away in frustration. That’s just what Kuma does.
When we finally did start climbing the mountain, it turns out 240 ft is a lot more difficult than I thought. We wanted to give my dad a nice easy stroll, and we ended up putting him in front of a difficult inclined climb. To his massive credit, he was a trooper and impressed big time with his gumption. He made it to the top and back down without a peep. The reward at the top is a bench with a nice view:
The boys also made it to the top without any trouble:
We like hiking a lot. I think I enjoy hiking more than skiing. We definitely need some better hiking gear though before we do anything too adventurous. I’ve been hiking in running shoes which aren’t good for protecting the bottom of my feet from sharp rocks or for stopping my ankles from rolling over. The book bags we’re using for carrying supplies really don’t provide the needed support for hours of use. I think the things we need are:
- Hiking boots
- Hiking packs (probably with water built in a la Camelbaks)
- Proper supplies to fill the packs with in case of emergencies
- Packs for the dogs
- Walking poles possibly
- Booties for the dogs possibly
Hopefully we will hike frequently during the summer. I want to try to get up some fourteeners (peaks over 14,000 feet) this year so I can summit Pike’s Peak next March when there’s still snow at the top. That’s my goal!