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Grandma Hikes 14,255 Feet!

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Grandmother of four, Eileen Edelman, hikes two to three times a week, and was having so much fun that she formed a group of hiking buddies. This group of women, ages 55 to 66, surely makes us feel like we're lazy for complaining about having to park far away from our destination. Check out their most recent trip. 

Grandma Hikes 14,255 Feet

Eilen Edelman: Last Friday, I climbed Longs Peak with three friends. Longs is the highest mountain in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, with a summit elevation of 14,225 feet. To do the hike, we needed to climb up over 5000 feet. We are part of a group of seven women in our 50s and 60s.

We have wanted to do Longs for ages, and decided this was the summer it was going to happen. We kept setting target dates for the Longs climb and were repeatedly frustrated--first by really scary thunderstorm forecasts for the high country and then by a storm in mid-August that dumped a foot and a half of snow on everything above 9500 feet. So we waited impatiently for the new snow to melt, hoping that this wouldn't be a year with early autumn snowfall.

We grabbed the first day with a good forecast after the snow melted. Only four of us could make it that day and the other three (two grandmothers, with a total of three grandkids) are watching the weather for the next possible date. I am really glad we didn't wait any longer--three days later, some people I know had to turn back because of dangerous winds up high.

We started on the trail at 3 a.m. wearing headlamps, and didn't get back to our car until after 6 p.m. It was really super watching the light change as we hiked--I had never looked down at a sunrise before. A lot of the trail was really difficult climbing, and we needed to wear protective helmets for part of it. Two women in our group have short legs and were happy to accept boosts from nice, tall young men on the trail.

Our group ranged in age from 55 to 66. We were clearly the oldest people on the summit that day. As we were coming down, we met a man who told us he was 50 and then said, "You ladies are an inspiration."

Photo from left: Eileen Edelman, Carol Reed, Kate Polk and Leslie Edmondson


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3 comments so far | Post a comment now
JenniferInstance September 7, 2008, 11:16 AM

Impressive!

Aaron Deschane September 7, 2008, 12:21 PM

Congratulations on summiting Longs Peak! You ladies are an inspiration. Longs is tough and you all did good. I enjoyed the line about getting boosts from the young men on the trail.

Karyn September 7, 2008, 10:06 PM

Wow, that is a major achievement for anyone, and especially for a grandma! Very impressive. It obviously took a lot of hard work and determination. You truly are an inspiration.


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