Twenty-three members and eight guest climbers endured treacherous ice and 90+ mph wind gusts to complete this year’s Pikes Peak AdAmAn Club climb to the summit of 14,115 foot Pikes Peak to welcome in the New Year. Two days before the climb there were two injuries on the top two miles of the mountain due to the icy conditions. After spending the night at Barr Camp on December 30th, the climbers reached the summit around 3:30 PM on the 31st and made all necessary preparations for the traditional midnight fireworks display.
Our new member, Bill Slaughter, led the climbers up the 13 mile route to the summit. Day one was relatively calm and overcast, with temperatures in the 20's and light breezes. However, the second day’s climb proved much more challenging. After reaching timberline at 12,000 feet, the climbing party encountered wind gusts and difficult ice conditions along Barr Trail. Conditions on the summit deteriorated as the evening wore on and at fireworks time it was difficult to even stand up. The summit weather station measured wind gusts at 91 miles per hour with sustained wind in the 50 mile per hour range.
This year the club posted regular status reports and photos to facebook and twitter as they progressed up the mountain. This use of social networking technology was a hit with the facebook fans as well as the climbing party. From the summit the club had the opportunity to review some of the fan posts and enjoyed hearing how much others like watching the fireworks. To view the facebook posts click on the facebook icon at www.adaman.org.
Under clear skies and high winds, the blue moon greatly enhanced the show by lighting up Pikes Peak. Friends of the club have shared some of the best fireworks photos we've ever seen!
Our newest AdAmAn Club member, Bill Slaughter, is the 92nd member inducted into the AdAmAn Club, a Pikes Peak area tradition since 1922. He has made the trek up Barr Trail nine previous times as a guest, so the climbing party this year was in experienced hands.
Our thanks to the residents of the Pikes Peak Region for your continued support of the Pikes Peak AdAmAn Club. It was again a pleasure to help welcome the New Year from the summit of America’s Mountain!
Background photo courtesy of The Gazette/Mark Reis.