Located in Manitou Springs, there’s a popular local fitness challenge. Originally constructed as a funicular (aka a cliff railway), now lies a rise of steps that go straight up the mountain. With over 68% grade in some places, the 610 meter gain is covered in less 1.2km!
This seemed like the perfect combination of fitness, high intensity, altitude exposure, and a shorter day. My approach was to run for 30-60 seconds/walk slowly for 30 seconds, then repeat all the way to the top.
The base of the incline sits at 2,000m (6,600 feet)- thus altitude also adds a little to the challenge. And just for funzies, I didn’t start until 9am- and it was HOT! The sun beat directly onto the dirt and there was little opportunity to find reprieve in shade. Parts of the trail are quite broken and sections have exposed pipe from the old hydroelectric utility system. In some of the steeper seconds I could only manage to run for 20 seconds before I needed my break. It was most certainly hard work.
The incline joins up with the Pikes Peak race trail, so I explored around the trail and descended it back to the base of the trail only run back up again.
What a great intro to the area! Less than a week to the Pikes Peak Marathon.
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