Friday, July 10, 2015

Manitou Incline

I went on another "hike" recently. I think it's really half challenge half hike.

It was WAY to cold and rainy to sit by the pool as we planned so we decided to tackle the mountain. This is the start of the Manitou Incline in Colorado Springs (on the left). Doesn't look too bad from the bottom! The photo on the right is somewhere in the middle of the hike. It was so rainy, we didn't get our phones out much during the incline.

Our friend, who is in excellent shape, said she did the incline in 30 minutes. I think she is mistaken. World class athletes can do it in 25 minutes. I am sure she was fast, but I would plan on an hour to an hour and a half if you have a regular cardio routine (and up to 2.5 hours for then average hiker). We were passed a fair amount along the way up. I'd like to think all of those people were in the Air Force Academy or from the nearby Olympic Training Center. Though, most of the hikers looked like regular people who have done the trail before.

This is the top. Not much of a view! The incline rises 2000 feet over less than a mile. It doesn't sound like much, but my heart was beating out of my chest before too long.

It was too slippery for us to even consider taking the stairs back down. My recently broken foot has made me very cautious. The trail down is about 4 miles on a fairly well marked path.

We had some pretty views along the way down.

We weren't expecting the way down to be so long, but there were a fair amount of switchbacks. 

I think I was delirious at this point. These rocks looked so beautiful in my mind.

Here's the train for Pike's Peak that we took last year. I thought I had blogged about that journey, but maybe not.

It took us about 3 hours to do the round trip journey. I think under better conditions, we would have been faster. I'd like to come back in a year after I've rejoined my regular cardio routine to see if I could get a better time. 
Colorado Springs has so many interesting sites. I'm never disappointed with my visit to the area.

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