Another early start, at least for me but Jenny had a sleep in. I was attending a local breakfast geocaching event to catch up with local cachers. One of the attendees was the the most prolific finder for Colorado – mondou2 (140 000 finds). It was a good turnout and I managed to lighten my load with dropping off a bag of trackables for others to move on.
Jenny was nearly ready when I returned to the motel and soon we headed into Downtown Denver to recce out Union Station and the Hertz office ready for tomorrow morning. With that all sorted we headed south to Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak in sunshine even though it was still -6C outside.
With the weather over the last few days and the impending storm this afternoon, I was surprised that Pikes Peak Highway was open to the top but it was. The only words of wisdom from the gatekeeper was to use the lowest gear especially on the way home due to ice on the road. I guess there was no world record to the top today in a rental car.
We were lucky enough to have great views all the way to the summit but the temperature plummeted to -15C which didn’t take into account the wind chill. Stopping a few times to take some photos and grab some geocaches and you soon appreciated the wind chill.
Just as we arrive at the summit, the cloud rolled in and winds started to really roar. The car was still indicating -15C but with the wind chill the temperature was -35C. I took my gloves and coat off for a photo and my hands soon froze. What didn’t help was having to chase one glove that got blown away. Sitting back in the car, it took 10 minutes to thaw out with the heater flat out before I could grip the wheel for the return journey back down.
They are serious about the low gear on the way down as there is a brake check 1/3 the way down where they measure the temperature of your brakes. If the temperature is above 300F then you have to park to the side and wait for them to cool. No issue with hot brakes today.
There was one more stop before getting back to Denver. We called into the Castle Rock Fire Department to catch up with some buddies of Billy (our friend in Ohio). We met up with Norris and Oren and got the tour of Station 151 in Downtown Castle Rock and chatted. Before long it was dark and we needed to get back to our motel before the storm hit. Just as we made it back, it started snowing so timing was all good.
For dinner we grabbed some takeaway Mexican at the taco joint next door and packed our bags ready for tomorrow.