Our camp site was unforgettable; small mountain stream flowing right next to the tent and vast spaces all around.
After several beers (naturally PBRs), a dinner cooked over the camp fire, and the PBR Fueled Torch, it was time for bed.
After attempting to sleep at 10,500 feet, the next morning we were ready to check yet another 14ers off of the list, before I realized that the key from my father’s 4Runner, which we drove to the mountain, was missing. To elaborate, I carried just one single key without any sort of a key chain, since I didn’t feel the need to bring the keys to my Brooklyn apartment to the hike.
Ironically, couple days before, in my mind, I briefly analyzed the fact that people carry often obscure objects on their key chains. The conclusion I came up with was that the key chain and the respective keys should be bulky enough to stay in sight when carelessly thrown around one’s house or, as I later learned, lost in the Colorado wilderness. It is funny how those thoughts sometimes come around to get you.
Fix and I were planning on departing the campsite around 7am to start the climb. However, due to the lost key, the whole plan would probably had to be scratched entirely. Some ideas that ran through my head included hiking to the nearby Leadville located good 12 miles away to call my father who would ideally bring the spare key for the 4Runner before the night time.
The whole situation was not very desirable since one of the highlights of my vacation was about to be replaced with a 12 mile walk to Leadville.
Luckily, the search for the key had paid off after about 30 minutes. After turning all the camp gear upside down in the search of the key, I finally found it peacefully laying on the top of the small hill where I got to to see the sunrise earlier that morning.
Mt. Elbert ended up being the toughest 14er I have ever done. It must have been the combination of me being little under the weather, coming up from the sea level, and the steepness of the mountain. We started the climb at about 8.30 and I summitted at about 12.30, with Kevin summitting 10-15 minutes ahead of me.
According to 14ers.com, the standard route we followed on our climb resulted in 4,700 ft vertical elevation gain.
On the way home and after about 5 years since my last visit, I finally made it to the Silverthorne favorite – the Dam Brewery. Over the past 5 years, I have tried numerous times to make it to the restaurant, but every single time I tried going on the way home from the mountains, there had been a 45 minute wait to get a table. So the only time, I am finally able to get a table, I can’t drink the microbrews, I was so relentlessly pursuing ever since Palmer and Fish took me there. To make matters worse, Dam Brewery did not serve any other beverages besides their own microbrews.
Note to self: No PBR at Dam Brewery, come back for micorbrews in a year.
(Thanks for the pics, Fix)