Kit Carson Peak: A quiet Saturday in July 1979

Summit of 14er Kit Carson Peak, Saturday July 21, 1979. Photo by Mike George.

DENVER — It’s always fun to look back in time. A photo by Mike George taken on Saturday July 21, 1979, paints a unique picture.

“I thought you might find it interesting to see what a fourteener summit ‘crowd’ looked like on a Saturday in July 1979,” George said.

How times have changed. Data in 2015 from the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative show Kit Carson and Challenger Peak (located next to Kit Carson) see 1,000 to 3,000 hiker visits per year.

The CFI data also show most of those summits occur in July and August on Saturdays (30.6 percent) and Sundays (19.8 percent).

“We had just finished climbing Crestone Needle and Crestone Peak, and continued on to climb Humbolt, reaching the summit about an hour before sunset.  It was a busy day, but anything is possible when you are 19!” George said.

At 14,171 feet, Kit Carson Peak is the 23rd-highest ranked peak in Colorado. It’s located in the Sangre De Cristo mountain range about three hours south of Denver.

Two other ranked, named peaks sit next door: 13er Columbia Point (13,980 feet) and 14er Challenger Point (14,080 feet).