Summited pikes peak for the first time on Saturday, June 16. I came from sea level 3 days before the hike and hiked it with 2 people from Co.

The trail is very well marked and easy to follow. The views are spectacular. Barr high camp is really great and the bathrooms are very clean. Overall this was an amazing first 14er.

Below is a detail of my experience, what I brought with me and how it went.

We started at 6 am and actually did the incline first and picked up the Barr trail at the top of the incline. The incline was very challenging, by we made it up to the top by 7:10 and picked up the Barr trail around mile 3.

Miles 3-6 were a comfortable increase incline. Nothing too strenuous and a welcome break after the incline. At mile 6 we reached the Barr High Camp. It was a very nice place to stop. We made it there by 9:15. The elevation there was around 10,000 and for me coming from sea level, to this point I was feeling fine.

We left Barr Camp around 9:45. The next three miles were slightly steeper than miles 3-6 but not too strenuous. My pace was slower than miles 3-6 as I wanted to control my breathing and not gas out before the last three miles.

We stopped at 12,000 feet for a short break as after that, you are above the tree line. At that point there is also a shelter if needed. We got there around 11:25. Then we started off for the last three miles. These were definitely the hardest. Everyone told us the last two were the hardest but for me, the third to last was the worst. Possibly because I was expecting the last 2 to be horrific. It took us 45 minutes to get to the 2 mile mark. At that point it got cold and started raining so we put on our rain jackets. We went slow and steady the rest of the way. The last mile, for me, was the easiest out of the last three. But I knew we were almost there. I very much paced myself steadied my breathing and we made it up by 2pm

There were plenty of people on the trail. Not crowded but you definitely see people. I agree that it is good to start early as you never know what the weather will be like.

We met a very nice girl on the trail who met her fiancé up top and they gave us a ride down. So getting a ride down is doable.

I never felt short of breath and never felt dizzy. But I also took it slow. I am not an extreme cardio person but I do train and I did my best to train for this, albeit at sea level.

I drank about a gallon and a half of water the two days before the hike and I think that helped. I only drank 2 liters while I’m the trail. Although I brought 3.5 with me.

It is cold up top. I would not do this without a rain coat, warm fleece and a clean shirt to change into.