I took some much needed time off from work this past week and headed over to the Leadville/Fairplay area of Colorado to hike my first 14er. The trail or trails that would take me up to 14k were Mt Democrat, Cameron and Lincoln. Mt. Bross would've been the 4th but the BLM/Forest Service and the 14er clubs are trying to work with the land owner to get the trail opened back up.
Being midweek (Thursday) when I made the hike I was surprised at how many people/families were actually on the trail (There was probable a good 20 to 30 vehicles at the trail head) which I didn't mind at all. Alot of the hikers that I meet were all pretty nice and a couple of us struck up some short conversations along the way as we stop to catch our breaths. Some of these folks came from as far away as Maryland while others were from Texas and Arizona. Then there were some folks that left me scratching my head due to the fact that some of the ladies where wearing 'daisy dukes' while some of the guys were wearing 'wife beaters' all while the temperatures were in the 40's. I think what surprised me most though was finding a cigarette but at 14000 feet, I would think at that altitude you'd want the ability to breath without choking your lungs.
The view from the trail head at 'Kite Lake'
The trail up
Pika, this little probable would've eaten out of my hand. It was not camera shy.
Zoomed in on the hikers heading up to Mt. Democrat
The view at the junction between the trail systems.
The view from up top on Mt. Democrat, Mt. Lincoln is in the distance on the right-hand side of the photo.
Lookin back at the valley below and the road up to 'Kite Lake'