| A stroll and a roll on Mt. Yale
Time Up: 2.75 hr
Time on Summit: 30 min
Time Down: 2.5 hr
A little background:
This is actually the second time I have hiked Yale. I asked my friend Jeremy to hike with me since he would push me to hike at a fast pace. I picked it again because it was one of my favorites and I thought it was a great one to try and go faster on for my Pikes Peak Marathon “training”.
We arrived at the trailhead around 6am, and spent some time stretching and getting ready before heading off up the trail at 6:15am. There were only a few spots left at the trailhead, so just a reminder to get there early!!
We started off at a great pace up the trail, and passed quite a few people along the way. We stopped a few times to have a snack, some water, and appreciate the views from the trail, but for the most part, we just kept moving along. The hike up reminded me of why I loved the hike up Mt. Yale the first time – the beautiful views from above treeline. It is a scenic trail all the way to the top. There were also several wildflowers along the first part of the trail, which made it lovely as well. Once we got to the ridge, the real fun began. I believe I made the same trail-losing mistakes as I did last year since it was once again a “choose your own adventure” to the summit. The scrambling around the rocks is fun and makes the time go by quickly. ;)
We arrived on the summit at 9am and almost had it to ourselves (only one other person up there at the time). We enjoyed the beautiful views from Yale and got rehydrated and refueled with Chex Mix and a PB&J.
After 30 minutes, we started heading back down. Once we got through the scrambling and started to head down from the ridge, we were able to start moving a little faster. Once we were between the boulder sections, we decided to run a little. And although it is true that I am the one that suggested “should we start running?”, what happens next was not my fault (contrary to how Jeremy tells the story). Just a short time after we started running, there was an unfortunate incident between a rock and Jeremy’s ankle. He instantly took the pressure off and hopped a few steps and sat down. As we assessed how bad it was, we were fairly certain that he couldn’t just “walk it off”, as it already started to swell. We were still well above treeline, so there was still another 3.5 miles to go. Since I was not able to carry him down the mountain, we decided we had no choice but to press on, slower than anticipated, and taking breaks as needed. Even though the ankle was swelling more as we got further, Jeremy was a trooper and just kept trucking through the pain. For going downhill most of the way on a bad ankle, I think we still made pretty good time coming down. After we finally got back to the car, we decided to have lunch and get a beer to celebrate our adventure and let Jer’s ankle rest before the long drive home.
Overall, we still had fun and it nice to really push myself going uphill. Going downhill was not as fun, but memorable.
What did I learn?
1. Band-aids and Neosporin don’t help treat sprained ankles. Perhaps consider athletic tape in the first aid kit…
2. It is not recommended to walk 3.5 miles downhill on a trail after spraining your ankle. Duh.
Jeremy at the top prior to me "breaking him"
Me at the top with an "evil smile" as Jeremy claims
The aftermath....probably shouldn't have hiked on that ;)
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):