Today I climbed Mt. Shavano making it the first mountain over 14,000 ft I have summitted. Shavano is 14,229 (although some sources say 14,237) feet. It's the 17th highest peak in Colorado (with the highest being Mt. Elbert at 14,400). The tallest non-Alaskan U.S. mountain is Mt. Whitney in California at 14,505 feet. The Alaskan mountains are in a league of their own with Mt. McKinley reaching over 20,000 feet above sea level.
I didn't find it to be any harder than Horn Peak (13,450 ft), just different and grueling in it's own way. The last 500 feet were straight up and rocky. We (my brother in-law and some of his in-laws-6 of us total) left from the trail head at 6am, summitted at 10am, and where back at the trail head at 1:30. For me, that's making good time, but now I'm paying for it...very sore. It was surprisingly cold at the summit, around 40 degrees and super windy. My wife dissed me for my camo in my summit shot. Oh well.
It's sheer torture climbing these dumb things (coming down may actually be more painful), so now that I have climbed a 14er I may retire.
Here's a couple more pictures-From the summit of Shavano
If you look close, you'll see some mountain sheep in the rocks. They live at 12,000 feet and run across the rocks like it's flat grass.
By the way, I don't post about these outdoorish achievements to brag in any way. Rather, I hope the fact that an overweight, aging, slow, and scared of heights person can do some of this stuff (by God's grace) might serve to inspire some of you.