Thursday, November 01, 2007

Hikers negotiate the 'Narrows', a ledge system that connects the Trough to the Homestretch, on their way to and from the summit of Longs Peak via the classic Keyhole route. The Narrows, though quite dramatic for the exposure, can be easily traversed as long as it is free of snow and ice which can be present well into July. Rocky Mountain National Park. September 1998.

4 Comments:

Blogger Gledwood said...

I used to live up a hill just like that. only slightly steeper. man, it wasn't half a bumpy busride trundling down THAT every morning!! (o! and the ride up... man, it was so weary, i practically felt i was straining MYSELF to get back up there...)

;->...

11:32 AM  
Blogger whitenoise said...

Any of these hikers ever drift over the edge...?

2:56 AM  
Blogger molson said...

Yup. The hike up Longs is a walk in the park, but it doesn't come with handrails. The Keyhole Route up Longs isn't a technically challenging climb. It requires no serious climbing skills. However, the exposure to a long fall on the Narrows is very real and unfortunately people do go over the side. Longs is a very popular climb because it is the only fourteen thousand foot peak in Rocky Mountain National Park. Many people hiking the Keyhole Route are simply unprepared for the physical effort required so by the time they get to the Narrows they are exhausted and suffering from hypoxia. The distance from the ranger station at the trailhead to the summit is 6.9 miles with 5000 feet of elevation gain with most of the climb at altitudes over 10,000 feet. If you come from a low land flat locale like I do, the climb up Long's or any fourteener is one tough slog. I train pretty hard to prepare for my trips to Colorado. Even then there is no way I can prepare for the thin air at altitude. It takes time at altitude to acclimate. Time that I usually do not have so I suffer terribly on some of these hikes to fourteen thousand feet. On my last trip in September, I had had to turn back from near the summit on Shavano. I simply did not have enough time after three days to acclimate for the hike. It was rough, but at least I didn't lose my cookies as so many do when suffering AMS (Accute Mountain Sickness). So are you guys ready to summit a fourteener yet?

8:37 AM  
Blogger Gledwood said...

Hmmm that really is what you'd call an "inclement" drop... doncha think?

Many thanks for your message... have a cheery old weekend...

where are you hiking out next????


Gledwood
"Vol 2"...
;->...

7:48 AM  

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