More than a mile-high!
Even though Denver is the Mile-High City, much of Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak is more than a mile above sea level! That means you have to adjust your activities, take it a little easier because there’s less oxygen here than, say Missouri or even Florida!
So here are some important tips we suggest to help you make the most of your Colorado vacation:
Take it easy at first
See that picture on the left- that’s the Manitou Incline. One mile hike. STRAIGHT UP. We highly recommend you avoid it on your first day here.
On your first day in the Pikes Peak region, we recommend seeing some of our great museums or indoor attractions. You’re going to need the time to let your body adjust to a higher altitude. We don’t recommend hiking to the top of Pikes Peak right out of the gate. Try going up a few flights of steps. See that. No air. It only gets worse the higher you go so take it easy the first day you’re here.
DRINK LOTS OF WATER
You should actually start this process a day or two before you come. Helping your body hydrate can minimize headaches and help adjust to the altitude. Colorado’s climate is dry, like the desert, so you’ll need more water while you’re here. Carry a water bottle in the car or bag while you’re exploring Garden of the Gods or shopping in Old Colorado City. You’ll need it.
Dress in layers
Especially if you’re taking your family to the mountains, we recommend dressing in layers. Have a sweatshirt or jacket in the car with you and whatever you do, take it with you if you’re going up Pikes Peak or to our mountain towns like Cripple Creek. On the top of Pikes Peak, the temperature can be 30 to 40 degrees colder than in Manitou Springs and that’s without wind! Even if you’re tough as nails, you’ll shiver like a wet cat on the top of Pikes Peak in July with shorts and a t-shirt.
Think about this: Colorado Springs is 6,035 feet above sea level and that’s not including the increase in altitude nearer the mountains like many of our attractions. That means you’re that much closer to the sun! Plus, we get over 300 days of sunshine a year here, which means you HAVE to lube-up on sunscreen for yourself and especially your kiddos. It’s incredibly important to be prepared. Oh, and chap-stick is your friend here. You’ll see it at every store. Pick up a tube and put it on. Your lips will thank you.