Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Pikes Peak

The highlight of our trip so far was a drive to the summit of Pikes Peak... something Lyle has been wanting to do for a long time. See, he's a very serious driver! For him the experience was all about the drive... the view was just a side benefit!
It was cloudy when we started, so we wondered if there would even be a view. But this was the only day we would be in the area. As we went through the toll gate the lady warned us, rather dourly, "You're going to be in and out of fog up there, you know!" She acted like she thought we were crazy for going anyway.

Turns out, she was wrong. It didn't take long for us to get above the clouds and we didn't run into fog even once!

There are no guard rails for most of the length of the 19-mile road, and the sheer drop-offs scared me to death! I couldn't look out the side window! I took a bunch of pictures, though, by just sticking the camera out the window and snapping while looking the other way! This is the first one I took that way. After I looked at the shot I realized I hadn't gotten the camera above the glass! Lyle laughed at me.
Here's a shot of our GPS showing the upcoming switch-backs. (Side note: The travel ducks live on the dash of our truck. They are our road trip mascots!)
And here is a shot of the some of the switch backs from the next level up! Scary stuff!
After much gripping of the arm rest, squeezing my eyes shut, and holding my breath, we finally did make it to the top! It was only 45 degrees, even though it was a sunny mid-July morning
And then we got to drive back down again!
Now, wasn't that fun?

I'm curious. Have you ever been up Pikes Peak? I'd love to hear about your experience!

13 comments:

Coloradolady said...

OH, yes we have been many times. We always like to drive...it was a running joke in the car each and every trip....the kids would always say "Hot Brakes Fail" all the way down. My husband would tease them saying the brakes were hot! We have not been in a good while, every time we took someone new to Colorado, this is a must see attraction! Enjoy your trip.

Nancy M. said...

Your pictures on this trip have been so beautiful! That road looks too scary for me! We only have small mountains here, and even they scare me, lol!

Constance said...

We have done Pike's Peak several times but by COG Railway. The drive puts too much extra wear and tear on the vehicles. It's been quite awhile since we've gone but I remember getting the kids hot chocolate at the top because they were so cold!

I don't know if it fits into your plans but I highly recommend going to the Great Sand Dunes, north of Alamosa!!! Our family LOVES going there!

One of the scariest drives is the "Going To The Sun Road" in Glacier NP. I have a theory: I told Dave that I won't buckle up b/c if we went off the road I'd prefer to be ejected and killed instantly rather than bounce to death all the way to the bottom!!!

We leave for Yellowstone in 2 days!!! So excited!
Connie

TattingChic said...

I've never been to Pike's Peak! Thanks for taking me along for the ride! LOL! :)

Oh, that 45 degrees sounds really good right now! Pant...pant...

lady m's lavender cottage said...

I am sure that the drive must have been a bit nerve wrecking ;) but it was worth it to see so much beauty!

Thank you for sharing your trip with all of us...every morning I look forward to seeing where you are ;D

blessings,

lady m

The Going Blog said...

Just be thankful that Lyle is all about the drive with those kind of roads. They look plum scary. We took the COG railway on our honeymoon.

Laura said...

Karla,
I'm enjoying a quick peek at all the pics each day before I head off to camp to work! See you soon.

Emily said...

It's been wonderful to read about your travels! It looks like a fun trip!! :)

Laura said...

LOL!!! looks like going to the sun road all over again!!!!!!!! Mom you have not been in the car with Papa and Grammy this week. Can you say "Get me out of here!!" ok so Grammy drives good but Papa just dont get in. LOL.

pse said...

The pictures are wonderful, but glad I wasn't riding on the road.

Ronda said...

Enjoyed your pics...Sounds like an awesome vacation!!! :)We would LOVE to visit there sometime...

Greg said...

Great pics, Karla! I'm with Lyle: that road would be totally awesome to drive! See y'all soon!

Greg

JamaGenie said...

Lovely photos, even the one through the glass! This is the closest this Flatlander will get to Pikes Peak! Can't help but wonder why no guard rails. ???