For the last four years, my mom has been talking about how much she wants to go hiking with me. When I was living in North Carolina, we could never find the time to make it happen. Well, to celebrate her new found retirement, I told her it was time to put her money where her mouth is. So this past weekend, she did just that. But, we weren't just going for a hike, we were going backpacking.
We hit the Collegiate Wilderness deep in the heart of the Colorado Rockies and Mom was a trooper! We spent our first night in the luxury of Hotel de la.....my car (don't worry, the seats go down, it's nice). After sorting out was she was and was not allowed to pack, we hit the trail around 7 a.m. It wasn't long before the altitude hit Mom in the face, but she pressed on. We set up camp just below the treeline at the base of Mt. Belford (14,197 ft.) in a broken down cabin circa 1800s.
Unfortunately, Mom experienced an extreme blowout in her boot and her sole essentially removed itself from the boot preventing her from pressing forward. However, it was a blessing in disguise. I opted to hit the trail early the next morning to bag another 14er before Mom woke up. What I thought was going to be a quick hike was a brutal bout against the wind (see the misery on my face). It was the closest I ever came to being blown over and I thought my face was going to freeze off. There were times I had to get on all fours while the gust went through. Therefore, Mom would have hated it. I ended up making it to the summit of Mt. Belford and trail ran my way down as Mom was just starting to get organized.
We broke camp a day early because of the boot problem and hit the road. Regardless of the shoe issue, Mom still knocked out some extremely difficult hiking, especially considering she is a Texas Flatlander who got right off the plane only to immediately climb to 10,000 ft.
Mom turned 57 years old on our first day of hiking. At that age, I can only hope to be hiking still. Way to go Mom! Leave a comment for my mom, she kicked some serious ass.