Hiking Longs Peak - Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain Travel & Vacation Guide
RockiesGuide.com - Home
Hike ItRaft ItSki ItJump ItMarvel It
You're In >> RockiesGuide.com - Travel Articles & Travel Information
RockiesGuie.com - Travel, Hotels, Condos and Vacations Search Colorado | Utah | Wyoming | Idaho | Alberta | British Columbia
Sections Forums | News | Hotels | Directory


Rocky Mountain Travel

Search Engine    
Search Help | Advanced Search | New Links | Article Search





Rockies Weather
Enter Your "City, State",
or Zipcode:



Home > Colorado > Colorado Parks > Rocky Mountain National Park > What to Do in the Park > Hiking > Hiking Longs Peak    [ bookmark this page ]

Page Title: Hiking Longs Peak - Rocky Mountain National Park
Page Synopsis: Hiking Longs Peak in Rocky Mountain National Park



Recommended Travel Links:
RockiesGuide.com: Estes Park, Colorado Hotels
Ski Packages: Expedia Ski Packages
Expedia.com: Estes Park Hotels






Hiking Longs Peak - Rocky Mountain National Park

You can't miss this mountain. At 14,255 feet, Longs Peak towers above all other summits in Rocky Mountain. The flat-topped monarch is seen from almost anywhere in the park. Different angles show the great mountain's unique profiles. Changing weather reflects Longs Peak's many moods.


In the summertime - the season when thousands hike or climb to Longs' summit - those moods are fairly predictable. Early mornings break calm, clear and blue. Clouds build in the afternoon sky, often exploding in storms of brief, heavy rain, thunder and dangerous lightning. Begin the trek early, way before dawn, to be back in the car before the weather turns.


The Keyhole Route, Longs Peak's only non-technical hiking pathway, is eight miles long one-way with an elevation gain of 4,850 feet. Typically free of ice and snow from mid-July through mid-September, this challenging route was the choice of celebrated British adventurer Isabella Bird in 1873. Her words of wonder and praise for Longs Peak, which concluded that it was "much more than a mountain," ring true today as if the ink on her book A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains was still fresh.


Bird, who ascended Longs in the company of mountain man "Rocky Mountain Jim" Nugent, was not the first woman to climb Longs Peak. She was preceded to the summit that same year by Anna Dickinson. Both women followed in the footsteps of Addie Alexander and a "Miss Bartlett," two women who successfully climbed Longs in 1871.


Keyhole Route hikers may not know it, but they pass reminders of the past - both happy and sad - on their way to the summit.


The Boulder Field Inn (1925-37), whose stone foundations still can be seen near the Boulder Field Campsite, was the home of young Tiny Collier. Her father owned a popular lodging and guide service. Legend has it that a party of serious mountaineers encountered 7-year-old Tiny during its ascent of the Trough, an arduous gully that challenges most of the 15,000 people who climb Longs each year. Tiny was riding her tricycle.


"What are you doing here little girl?" the surprised climbers asked.


"I'm playing," she responded.


"Where do you live?"


"I live here!"


Tragically, there are those who never left Longs Peak alive. A stone gazebo at the Keyhole formation displays a plaque memorializing Agnes Vaille, a well-known climber in the 1920s. The pioneer of numerous mountain routes in the Rockies, Vaille attempted the first winter ascent of the mountain's precipitous east face in January, 1925. She and her climbing partner, Walter Kiener, succeeded after more than 24 hours of dangerous mountaineering through frigid blizzard conditions. While descending the North Face, Vaille fell 100 feet down the rock cliff, coming to a stop in a snowdrift. Her injuries were minor, but because of fatigue and hypothermia, Vaille was unable walk. Battling frostbite that would cost him toes and fingers, Kiener promptly summoned help. Vaille's rescuers arrived to find her dead from exposure.


Agnes Vaille and about 50 other climbers have lost their lives on Longs Peak. It is not a mountain tolerant of the unprepared. But hiking and technical climbing on the mountain are exciting and rewarding experiences. And they are comparatively safe if common-sense safety principles are applied. Keyhole route hikers should be properly outfitted with clothing, food and water. Use caution when ascending or descending steep areas. Don't be afraid to back down when bad weather threatens.


Once climbed, or even viewed at a distance from the safety of a car, Longs Peak is not a mountain easily forgotten.

Hiking_Longs_Peak.pdfHiking_Longs_Peak.pdfHiking_Longs_Peak.pdf





Home > Colorado > Colorado Parks > Rocky Mountain National Park > What to Do in the Park > Hiking > Hiking Longs Peak    [ bookmark this page ]

SITE SEARCH
Welcome to RockiesGuide.com

RockiesGuide.com:


Rockies Search
Rockies
Travel Forums



RockiesGuide.com - Colorado, Idaho, Utah, New Mexico, Alberta, British Columbia Add Your Link
RockiesGuide.com - hotel reservations, travel reservations, hotel discounts Login To Your Account



Rocky Mountains, Mountains, Rockies Search Help
Travel, Vacations, Camping, Hiking Search Home
Hotels, Condos, Skiing About Us



Check out Hotels and Resorts from the RockiesGuide.com Travel Center
Alberta Hotels
British Columbia Hotels
Colorado Hotels
Idaho Hotels
Utah Hotels
Wyoming Hotels





Join the RockiesGuide.com mailing list
Email:
Hotel Deals ~ Travel Specials ~ Adventures
Search Directory >> Colorado | Utah | Wyoming | New Mexico | Montana | Idaho | Alberta | British Columbia
Travel Guide >> Colorado | Utah | Wyoming | Idaho | Alberta | British Columbia
Rockies Hotels >> Alberta Hotels | British Columbia Hotels | Colorado Hotels | Idaho Hotels | Utah Hotels | Wyoming Hotels

RockiesGuide.com - Rocky Mountain Travel, Hotel and Activities Guide
2000-2006 RockiesGuide.com All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | About Us
RockiesGuide.com - Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, New Mexico, Montana, Idaho, Alberta and British Columbia   RockiesGuide.com - Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, New Mexico, Montana, Idaho, Alberta and British Columbia