The Colorado Mountain Club is Magical
14ers.com is the most comprehensive on-line resource for all things Colorado 14ers. You can find anything you need to know. From route descriptions and pictures, recent trip reports and trail head conditions, to tips and training advice, its all there. Once Andy and I had two 14ers under our belts, we knew we wanted to do more, and I have been on 14ers constantly ever since. Every summer, without fail, people will die while climbing Colorado 14ers. Its the nature of the beast. The mountains are unpredictable, and even the best training and preparation can not compete with being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The risk involved with hiking high up was never lost on me. I knew that with my complete lack of knowledge of the great outdoors, I had a lot to learn. Andy was well ahead of me with years of boyscouts, but it had been decades for him as well. I saw The Colorado Mountain Club listed in posts on 14ers forums a few times, and we decided to look into it. We joined in the winter of 2012 and were intent on taking Basic Mountaineering School. Because thats what climbing 14ers is, right? Mountaineering? Uh, no. We were getting way ahead of ourselves, and fortunately, the CMC anticipates this and has a required order in which you’re allowed to move up in their schools. We started at the beginning. Wilderness Trekking School. We followed that up with Basic Rock Climbing School, and then with Wilderness First Aid certification. 2014 will see us moving on to Rock Seconding School, a potential sport climbing clinic, knot tying class, winter camping, and maybe a few other courses as well. We’re now looking at Basic Mountaineering School for the spring of 2015.
The CMC has been a valuable resource to us. The people we’ve met while there are so welcoming and helpful, and to say that safety is paramount is an understatement. The education with regards to safety that the CMC schools provide is extremely valuable. I still have loads to learn, but I’ve come a long way thanks to the CMC.