US Trip 2018 – Day 8 – On top of the world

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After a red-eye flight from Hawaii, we arrived very early at Denver International Airport. The main goal this day was to drive to the summit of Mt. Evans. The route took us from the airport to Parachute, via Mt. Evans.

Approximate time on road/out caching:  13 hours, 20 minutes
Total miles driven: 279.9 mi / 450,5 km
Total cahes found: 14
Total DNF: 1
States visited: Colorado
Famous places visited: Mt. Evans
Most memorable cache: GC7C07 Top Of The World
Biggest surprise: The awesome rental car
Weather: Mostly sunny, a bit cloudy while on Mt. Evans
Highest temperature: 26.1°C / 79°F
Lowest temperature: 4,4°C / 40°F

Finding the perfect rental car

We arrived at Denver International Airport before 7am. This also meant that we arrived at the Hertz rental facility a lot earlier than most, and the selection of cars available wasn’t bad at all. After checking a couple cars, we ended up with a nice Subaru Outback (spoiler: it turned out to be the best car we’ve ever rented in the US).

The car had everything we needed, including adaptive cruise control and AWD. We’ve rented cars with adaptive cruise control many times in Europe, but never found one with it in the US before. It makes driving on the interstate so much smoother 😀

Since we didn’t stop for any food at the airport, we had to stop at a Denny’s along the way. A nice bonus was that we also got to find GC1BEYC Mondo’s On Every Corner #48 and drop a travel bug that we brought with us from Norway. A travel bug that wanted to go to Colorado. We love helping travel bugs achieve their goals!

The journey to the top

After a quick stop at a cache we’ve had on our list several times before, GC2MEWV I-70 Road Cut – North Side, we had to stop for some supplies. We had three weeks on the road ahead of us, and had to stock up on both water, snacks and other necessities.

The drive up wasn’t as long as I had anticipated, and the traffic wasn’t that bad either. But parking was a completely different story! We got lucky, and found a nice spot not too far from the top.

Got oxygen?

We’ve been on high mountains before, like Mauna Kea a couple days ago and Pikes Peak in 2014 and 2016. But in both 2014 and 2016, we had spent a lot of time in the Rocky Mountains before going up to the summit. We arrived on a flight from Hawaii earlier today… So going up this high, this fast, was not easy! It was very hard, and we were a lot slower than normal. But it was definitely worth it!

We could feel the elevation while driving, and it was even harder to hike the last part to the top. We bought extra oxygen before we started the trip up, not sure if it helped, but we like to think it did 😛

Back to the interstate

When we felt that we had spent enough time on the top, we headed back down and eventually got back on the interstate. We didn’t have too much planned for the remainder of this day, and mainly stopped at caches along the road.

But we did have one cache we wanted to find. GC1EGBD Underground Fires has been on our plan many times before. But it’s always been to dark out by the time we got here. Today we got here in daylight, and finally got to actually find the cache.

We still had some miles left to drive, and didn’t arrive at the hotel before after dark. A long day on the road, and the jet lag was really messing with us now!

Pictures

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