Today’s Groupon puts you on top of the world…figuratively. Eighty dollars gets you a guided climb in the Rocky Mountains courtesy of Denver Adventures, complete with all the training, gear, and sustenance you need for five hours of adrenaline-pounding excitement in one of the most breathtaking natural settings on earth. Climbing a mountain encourages an appreciation and respect for nature you just can’t get flipping through _National Geographic_—and instills as much self-respect as earning a knowing wink from Bruce Lee in 1970.
But don’t worry: you needn’t be able to cling to a vertical rock face by the tips of your pinkies to take on the mighty Rockies. Denver Adventures' experienced guides train even the freshest of beginners in the basics and assess individual skill levels, choosing the appropriate trail for you. Denver Adventures offers only top-rope climbing—the safest climbing style—regardless of where you fall on the badass scale. Even with the ropes, rock climbing is tremendously rigorous, like training for a marathon, but your guides will be high-altitude and endurance experts who always know when it’s time for a break. Denver Adventures will keep you fueled with lunch between climbs, a sports drink, snacks along the way, and a bit of extra fuel for your rocket boots.
Your guide will do his or her best to suit you up with all the necessary gear, food, and hydration for the climb, but it’s best to come prepared. Temperatures drop as altitudes rise, so be sure to bring along a long-sleeved shirt and windbreaker. Sunscreen, headwear, and an extra water bottle are also recommended. Leave the flip-flops at home, and come shod in appropriately sturdy, ankle-supportive footwear. It’s a 15-minute hike to the climbing location, so make sure those shoes are comfy.
Rock climbing is offered every day of the week for any experience and ability level—just call to make an appointment and set your own time and date, weather permitting. You’ll be asked your shoe size and physical ability level when you call—honesty is recommended on both counts. You’ll meet up about 10 minutes west of downtown Denver, then Denver Adventures will drive you to the trail to start your adventure.
Your Mind and The Mountain
Ask any experienced mountain climber and they’ll tell you the same thing: the tallest mountain is the one in your mind. Here’s a look at what your mental state will be like as you make your way up the mountain:
2000 Feet: The nagging feeling that you’ve left your oven on is misguided. You haven’t.
5000 Feet: Breathing becomes labored; earthly memories fade.
10,000 Feet: Why does it smell like Christmas?
20,000 Feet: Weight of the treasured Elf Stones lifted only by inspiring visions of the Gates of Shamagor.
30,000 Feet: Break for lunch.
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