Pikes Peak Panic

We had some time to kill so we were just driving around, taking in the beautiful scenery.  “Hey look. The North Pole place is that way” I told him. We already knew that it was an amusement park and we were not interested in rides. But, with time to kill, I figured we could go check out the gift shop. If we didn’t have to pay to park or anything. What he had also noticed was in that same direction was the Pikes Peak Highway. Neither one of us has ever really been to Colorado before (not counting my quick 24 hour trip for a funeral) and he really wanted to see Pikes Peak. We approached the toll booth and got in line.

“It’s a 30 minute drive to the airport” I told him. He was okay with that; he wanted to get as far up Pikes Peak as possible before we had to turn around to catch our flight. not a problem, I thought there would be plenty of scenic overlooks and shoulders to turn around when we needed to. We paid the toll and headed up the mountain. My god it was beautiful! The views were stunning.  

According to the little map, it’s 19 miles to the summit. Miles 1-9 were fine, no problems. I enjoyed the view, I looked for wild animals. Then we left the tree line. And problems. I learned something about myself this past weekend. Apparently I have an issue with heights when I’m that high on a mountain and there is no guard rail or trees and there is just a drop. Me who has never had a panic attack was almost hyperventilating.  The woman who was a human pinball was almost in tears and had a death grip on the car. I’ve never had a problem with heights before and I was fine once we re-entered the tree line heading back down. We did end up with a few interesting pictures. I would point and shoot without looking at where exactly the camera was pointing. And those pictures are being kept for posterity. (Any guesses as to which ones were taken blindly?)

We’ve decided that if/when we make it back to Colorado Springs J will head to the summit and I’ll hang out at the first rest stop/gift shop. That was at the reservoir and they had paddle boats and fishing. 

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Our turnaround was at Devil’s Playground where J climbed some rocks to get this shot. I was happy staying on solid ground at the car. 

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