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Old 05-01-2015, 06:22 PM
 
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How long does it take to hike up Pikes Peak? Is it too cold this time of year to hike it?
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Old 05-01-2015, 07:43 PM
 
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There's no good answer to this question.

How fit are you? Have you ever done any other long hikes with significant elevation gain? On the Barr Trail it is 13 miles one way and 7800 feet elevation gain. I've heard that even hikers who are very fit often struggle with the altitude on the last few miles of the trail, too.

Since you say "hike up Pikes Peak", how are you planning to get down? Hike down again once you reach the top, or have somebody drive up and meet you there? Note that you can't just show up at the top and hitch a ride back down on the cog railway.

Full disclosure: I've never attempted this hike myself. Even before I trashed my knee a couple years ago, I realized that it was beyond my limits.

Last edited by dr.frog; 05-01-2015 at 07:51 PM..
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Old 05-01-2015, 07:52 PM
 
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I run long distance but live on flat land on the coast. Used to live in Colorado, but only visit every couple years.

We were planning to buy a one way ticket down on the cog ahead of time.
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Old 05-01-2015, 07:58 PM
 
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Unless you're a mountaineering/hiking expert I would strongly advise against trying to hike up Pikes Peak right now.

Is it too cold - depends on the day. Weather at the bottom can be drastically different from the top, too. Portions of the trail are likely to have snow right now, there is snow on Pikes Peak. The top is pretty dicey this time of year. As for time, you'd better plan a full day - like leaving home in the dark and getting home in the dark. Make sure you're well prepared with appropriate gear and maps, etc. And know your fitness level - for most people, it is too difficult of a hike to do, honestly. But then there are also the people who run up and down it in marathons. And definitely know how you're getting down and make those arrangements ahead of time. The Pikes Peak highway is not open 24/7 and may not even be open all the way to the summit on a given day so you might not be able to get a car ride down if you take too long or might not be able to get to a car at all. You can buy a railway ticket if the cog is running, but I think you might need to do that at the bottom, well in advance, and can't count on getting one at the top on the spur of the moment - not that the train runs all day every day, either.

I might suggest you try the Mt. Rosa hike from North Cheyenne Canyon first - about half the distance - maybe 13-16 miles round trip - so you can do round trip in a full day if you're in good shape, slightly less elevation gain at maybe 6000 or so - you can look it up- but less issues with getting cars in and out.

If you don't hike around here frequently, start with something quite a bit less - the Incline, St. Mary's Falls, Blodgett Peak, or Eagles Peak might give you a tiny inkling of serious but shorter hiking.

Whatever you decide to do, plan and prepare well and don't do it alone.

Last edited by otowi; 05-01-2015 at 08:17 PM..
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Old 05-01-2015, 08:11 PM
Status: "The list doesn’t destroy culture; it creates it" (set 26 days ago)
 
Location: Denver CO
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You decide - is this too cold? This is a photo I just grabbed off the weather cam - current conditions 8 pm May 1, 2015 Web Cam | Pikes Peak Cog Railway | Colorado Springs
Attached Thumbnails
How long to hike up Pikes Peak-summitcam-050115.jpg  
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Old 05-01-2015, 08:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emm74 View Post
You decide - is this too cold? This is a photo I just grabbed off the weather cam - current conditions 8 pm May 1, 2015 Web Cam | Pikes Peak Cog Railway | Colorado Springs
Yes

Thank you
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Old 05-01-2015, 08:22 PM
 
3,256 posts, read 4,125,244 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otowi View Post
Unless you're a mountaineering/hiking expert I would strongly advise against trying to hike up Pikes Peak right now.

Is it too cold - depends on the day. Weather at the bottom can be drastically different from the top, too. Portions of the trail are likely to have snow right now, there is snow on Pikes Peak. The top is pretty dicey this time of year. As for time, you'd better plan a full day - like leaving home in the dark and getting home in the dark. Make sure you're well prepared with appropriate gear and maps, etc. And know your fitness level - for most people, it is too difficult of a hike to do, honestly. But then there are also the people who run up and down it in marathons. And definitely know how you're getting down and make those arrangements ahead of time. The Pikes Peak highway is not open 24/7 and may not even be open all the way to the summit on a given day so you might not be able to get a car ride down if you take too long or might not be able to get to a car at all. You can buy a railway ticket if the cog is running, but I think you might need to do that at the bottom, well in advance, and can't count on getting one at the top on the spur of the moment - not that the train runs all day every day, either.

I might suggest you try the Mt. Rosa hike from North Cheyenne Canyon first - about half the distance - maybe 13-16 miles round trip - so you can do round trip in a full day if you're in good shape, slightly less elevation gain at maybe 6000 or so - you can look it up- but less issues with getting cars in and out.

If you don't hike around here frequently, start with something quite a bit less - the Incline, St. Mary's Falls, Blodgett Peak, or Eagles Peak might give you a tiny inkling of serious but shorter hiking.

Whatever you decide to do, plan and prepare well and don't do it alone.
Thanks for the list of hikes. We definitely plan on doing the incline. Will check out the others! Thank you!
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Old 05-01-2015, 09:36 PM
 
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I hiked up Pikes Peak, Labor Day, 2013. I did it by myself, which everyone said it was a mistake. Well I wanted to do it and wanted to be able to say I did it. I hiked up the Craigs Trail and it took me about 4 hours but kept on trekking. I took a few short breaks, had plenty of Pedialyte and water. I brought all these snacks and didn't eat anything until I got down. Was crazy to see the views from the top and I am still amazed I did it. Feels so surreal. All I can say is be careful and make sure you let someone know what you are doing. I let my parents know, who were in another state. When I got done for the day I was sure to call my Dad and let him know I did it safely and successfully. I did not hike back down. Was way too steep for me and wanted to take the Cog Railway down. I then had to get a cab and take me back to the Craig trailhead and get me back to my truck. It was a beautiful, clear, sunny day. I lucked out for that opportunity. I still remember it so vividly.

I realize I got way off topic, I have heard the Barr Trail is anywhere from 8 - 12 hours. Good luck.
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Old 05-02-2015, 06:14 AM
 
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BTW if you do get serious about getting up Pikes Peak a little later, there are multiple routes, as Rangerdude_Charlie mentioned. Some old ones like via Bear Creek/Jones Park. I would recommend some good maps, but to start Pocket Pals has one or a few with different Pikes Peak routes. Pocket Pals Trail Maps, Colorado Trail Maps & More
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Old 05-03-2015, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Manitou Springs
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I'm not sure if anyone has mentioned this, but hiking Barr Trail/Pikes Peak, and really almost any other trail in Colorado require that you be prepared for all sorts of weather conditions, no matter what time of year you're hitting the trails. But maybe you know this ... just thought it was worth mentioning. Nice and warm done here doesn't mean nice and warm up there.
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