Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Infamous Incline

One of the things Colorado folk have said is that if you are to be accepted as a true CO lover of the outdoors you must conquer the Incline. What's the Incline you ask? Well, this is a loaded question because of the history and controversy surrounding the Incline. For example, three different parties own the hill which the Incline is on and so the trail passes through three properties. This website says, the Incline as it exists now is the roadbed to the former Mount Manitou Scenic Incline Railway (a cable car)... with the steepest section at a grade of 68% (VERY STEEP!) and the average grade just over 40%. Also check that link for a better picture than ours below.
Here's the Incline from a few miles away. Our house is 18 miles away and you can see the scar of the path from our house! Pike's Peak (not shown) is just behind it and to the right.
This hike is a loved workout for many locals who run up it and down another trail called the Barr Trail (4 miles down). The picture above is from the beginning of the hike and as you can see this is not well maintained but is vigorously used.
Here's where we take a log of breaks, during that 68% grade. The above photo shows looking down at what we had accomplished, and below some of what we have left. What you think you see as the top is actually a false summit! During this section of the hike the majority of the steps were knee high to us, we are thankful we are tall :-)

Oh and a cool tidbit, right before I took this picture a deer was walking around in the trees to the right and then decided to cross the "path" about 15 feet from us, how cool!

Here I am at the top!

Once we arrive at the top we headed down the Barr Trail thinking it would be quick. It took us 1 hour & 15 minutes to hike up the Incline and 1 hour to hike down Barr Trail. It was almost 9:30 by the time we got to the car. As you can imagine it was very dark! And a little scary with no flashlights. We love our Colorado and now we are true locals, thank you very much.

1 comment:

Stephen Becker said...

Look what I found in the New York Times this morning! I couldn't believe it, after I read your blog yesterday. You two are Olympians!


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