I stayed in Manitou Springs, Colorado in an historic hotel called Cliff House.  VERY BEAUTIFUL.  I felt like a turn in a hotel made of roses….

The Climb!

Because I did visit here at the end of January, the entire road to the peak (14,115 ft) was not open.  Just to 11,700 ft was open.  At the entrance there was a sign that was updated daily on the summit temps… 15 degrees and -6 when accounting for wind chill!!!  I guess now is the best time to tryout my heated gear for the first time!  HERE WE GO!

The ride was spectacular!  Daunting.  Dangerous.  Beautiful.  Awe-inspiring.  Every stop was picture perfect!  EVERY.  STOP.  I took out my camera every stop!  I also tried to keep my followers on Snapchat up-to-date on my progress!

One thing I did not expect was the 10,000+ ft. altitude to affect me the way it did.  For one picture I decided to leave my bike parked in the middle of the street (There was very little traffic).  So I hopped off the bike, grabbed my camera, jogged 30 ft away, got on the ground, took some pictures, and ran back.  By the time I got back to the bike things started to go slow and dark!!!  I choose to sit on the ground right next to my bike in the middle of the road instead of falling over.  It passed quick after I got my breathing under control.  Talk about scary!

At the blockade I met a park ranger named Kent!  I talked to him for about half an hour at the VERY windy area.  I took some more pictures and I started to feel REALLY tired.  Kent told me that it is the altitude.  He sent me to the store that was back down the road and about 300 ft lower to get food and water.  I did as I was told.  I got a cheap (but expensive) hand burger and cup of water.  That helped some, but I knew I needed to get down fast!  I bought some other souvenirs and headed down.  I felt MUCH better as soon as I got to 9,500 ft.  I did not stop at all on my way down. I went straight back to the hotel where I slept for 6 hours!

Conclusion:  GO THERE!  SEE IT!  I am going back in the summer when I can ride to the top!!!


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