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PIKES PEAK is the highest summit of the southern Front Range
Front Range
of the Rocky Mountains , in North America
North America
. The ultra-prominent 14,115-foot (4,302.31 m) fourteener is located in Pike National Forest , 12.0 miles (19.3 km) west by south (bearing 263°) of downtown Colorado Springs, Colorado
Colorado
. The mountain is named in honor of American explorer Zebulon Pike , who was unable to reach the summit. The summit is higher than any point in the United States
United States
east of its longitude .

CONTENTS

* 1 Mountain * 2 Geography and geology * 3 Discovery * 4 History * 5 Today * 6 Climate * 7 Historical names * 8 See also * 9 References * 10 Further reading * 11 External links

MOUNTAIN

Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
is one of Colorado's 53 fourteeners , mountains more than 14,000 feet (4,267.2 m) above sea level. The mountain rises 8,000 ft (2,400 m) above downtown Colorado
Colorado
Springs. Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
is a designated National Historic Landmark .

"Tava" or “sun,” is the Ute word that was given by these first people to the mountain that we now call Pikes Peak. The band of Ute people who called the Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
region their home were the "Tabeguache," meaning the "People of Sun Mountain." The Ute people first arrived in Colorado
Colorado
about 500 A.D., although their traditions state they were created on Pikes Peak. In the 1800s, when the Arapaho people arrived in Colorado, they knew the mountain as _"Heey-otoyoo’ "_ meaning "Long Mountain". Early Spanish explorers named the mountain _"El Capitán"_ meaning "The Leader". American explorer Zebulon Pike named the mountain "Highest Peak" in 1806, and the mountain was later commonly known as "Pike's Highest Peak". American explorer Stephen Harriman Long named the mountain "James Peak" in honor of Edwin James who climbed to the summit in 1820. The mountain was later renamed "Pike's Peak" in honor of Pike. The name was simplified to "Pikes Peak" by the United States
United States
Board on Geographic Names in 1890.

GEOGRAPHY AND GEOLOGY

Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
is composed of a characteristic pink granite called Pikes Peak granite . The color is due to a large amount of potassium feldspar . It is thought that the granite was once magma that crystallized at least 20 miles (32 km) beneath the Earth's surface, formed by an igneous intrusion during the Precambrian , approximately 1.05 billion years ago, during the Grenville orogeny . Through the process of uplifting , the hardened rock pushed through the Earth's crust and created a dome-like mountain, covered with less resistant rock. Years of erosion and weathering removed the soil and rock leaving the exposed mountain.

Soils on Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
are classified as Cirque Land above timberline; forests at lower altitudes are mostly supported by brown stony sandy loam of the Catamount or Ivywild series.

DISCOVERY

The first Europeans to discover Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
were the Spanish in the 1700s. The first American sighting is often credited to members of the Pike expedition , led by Zebulon Pike . After a failed attempt to climb to the top in November 1806, Pike wrote in his journal: ...here we found the snow middle deep; no sign of beast or bird inhabiting this region. The thermometer which stood at 9° above 0 at the foot of the mountain, here fell to 4° below 0. The summit of the Grand Peak, which was entirely bare of vegetation and covered with snow, now appeared at the distance of 15 or 16 miles from us, and as high again as what we had ascended, and would have taken a whole day's march to have arrived at its base, when I believed no human being could have ascended to its pinical . This with the condition of my soldiers who had only light overalls on, and no stockings, and every way ill provided to endure the inclemency of the region; the bad prospect of killing any thing to subsist on, with the further detention of two or three days, which it must occasion, determined us to return.

HISTORY

An 1890 winter climb (near Windy Point) up Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
Manitou and Pike\'s Peak Railway train rounding Windy Point, around 1900.

The first European-American to climb the peak came 14 years after Pike, in the summer of 1820. Edwin James , a young student who had just graduated from Middlebury College in Vermont
Vermont
, signed on as the relief botanist for Stephen Harriman Long 's expedition after the first botanist had died. The expedition explored the South Platte River up as far as present-day Denver, then turned south and passed close to what James called "Pike's highest peak." James and two other men left the expedition, camped on the plains, and climbed the peak in two days, encountering little difficulty. Along the way, James was the first to describe the blue columbine , Colorado's state flower.

Gold was discovered in the area of present-day Denver
Denver
in 1858, and newspapers referred to the gold-mining area as "Pike's Peak." _Pike's Peak or Bust_ became the slogan of the Colorado
Colorado
Gold Rush (see also Fifty-Niner ). This was more due to Pikes Peak's visibility to gold seekers traveling west across the plains than any actual significant gold find anywhere near Pikes Peak. Major gold deposits were not discovered in the Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
area until the Cripple Creek Mining District was discovered southwest of Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
and led, in 1893, to one of the last major gold rushes in the lower 48 states. The summit of Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
in 1901

In July 1860, Clark, Gruber and Company commenced minting gold coins in Denver
Denver
bearing the phrase "Pike's Peak Gold" and an artist's rendering of the peak (sight unseen) on the obverse . In 1863, the U.S. Treasury purchased the minting equipment for $25,000 to open the Denver
Denver
Mint .

Julia Archibald Holmes and James Holmes traveled to the Rocky Mountains in Colorado
Colorado
in 1858, and reached the summit on August 5, with J. D. Miller and George Peck, making Archibald Holmes the first European-American woman to climb Pikes Peak. From the summit, she wrote in a letter to her mother: "Nearly everyone tried to discourage me from attempting it, but I believed that I should succeed; and now here I am, and I feel that I would not have missed this glorious sight for anything at all.”

Thirty-five years later, in July 1893, Katharine Lee Bates wrote the song " America the Beautiful
America the Beautiful
", after having admired the view from the top of Pikes Peak. It appeared in print in _The Congregationalist_, a weekly journal, on July 4, 1895. A plaque commemorating the words to the song was placed at the summit.

During 1899, the Serbian physicist Nikola Tesla built his first working version of the Magnifying Transmitter in his laboratory some kilometers away from Colorado
Colorado
Springs , up in Pike's Peak, where he worked on his idea of wireless energy transmission and investigated the ionosphere and the telluric currents in the planets. Here, he proved that Earth is a good conductor, and he produced artificial bolt of 40 meters and millions of volts. He stated that during this year he discovered the Earth' stationary waves.

On July 17, 1913 William Wayne Brown drove his car, the _Bear Cat_, 20 miles to the summit. The ascent took 5 hours and 28 minutes.

The uppermost portion of Pikes Peak, above 14,000 feet (4,300 m) elevation, was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1961.

Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
was the home of a ski resort from 1939 until 1984.

TODAY

The sign at the summit Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
dominates the backdrop of Garden of the Gods . View from Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
summit looking north

There are several visitor centers on Pikes Peak, some with a gift shop and restaurant. These centers are located at the 6 mile, 12-mile (19 km) and the summit itself, and there are several ways to ascend the mountain. The Manitou and Pike\'s Peak Railway , the world's highest cog railroad , operates from Manitou Springs to the summit year-round, conditions permitting.

Road vehicles can be driven to the summit via the Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
Highway , a 19 mi (31 km) road that starts a few miles up Ute Pass at Cascade . The road has a series of switchbacks, treacherous at high speed, called "The W's" for their shape on the side of the mountain. The road is maintained by the city of Colorado
Colorado
Springs as a toll road . A project to pave the remainder of the road was completed on October 1, 2011. The project is in response to a suit by the Sierra Club over damage caused by the gravel and sediment that is constantly washed off the road into the alpine environment. The road remained open during construction.

The Highway is famous worldwide for the annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb , a motor race. The short film _ Climb Dance _ features Ari Vatanen racing his Peugeot
Peugeot
automobile up the steep, twisty slopes. It also hosts the Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
Cycling Hill Climb (formerly Assault on the Peak), a cycling hillclimb race first held in 2010, and the USA Cycling Hill Climb National Championships, a race first held in 2016.

The most popular hiking route to the top is called Barr Trail , which approaches the summit from the east. The trailhead is just past the cog railway depot in Manitou Springs. Visitors can walk, hike, or bike the trail. Although the Barr Trail is rated only Class 1 it is a long and arduous hike with nearly 8,000 feet of elevation gain, and a 13 mile trip one-way. Runners race to the top and back on Barr Trail in the annual Pikes Peak Marathon . Another route begins at Crags Campground, approaching the summit from the west.

Since 1969, the summit of Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
has been the site of the United States Army Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
Research Laboratory , a medical research laboratory for the assessment of the impact of high altitude on human physiological and medical parameters of military interest.

CLIMATE

At the peak, the partial pressure of oxygen is only about 60% of that at sea level. Water boils at 186 °F (86 °C) at 14,000 feet, rather than 212 °F (100 °C) at sea level.

A faster rate of respiration is required by humans and animals not regularly at high altitudes. Those familiar with altitude training know that prolonged exposure to the reduced pressures of high altitudes will produce more red blood cells to offset the lower oxygen availability. For the unacclimated, altitude sickness may develop in those who are sensitive or who over-exert themselves.

The summit of Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
has a polar climate due to its elevation. Snow is a possibility any time year-round, and thunderstorms are common in the summer. Surrounding areas have different climatic variations depending on location and elevation. Much of the area near Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
has a continental semiarid climate, while other areas would be classified as hemiboreal .

CLIMATE DATA FOR PIKES PEAK SUMMIT. (ELEVATION 14,115FT)

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

AVERAGE HIGH °F (°C) 8.1 (−13.3) 10.6 (−11.9) 14.0 (−10) 19.7 (−6.8) 28.4 (−2) 38.5 (3.6) 47.6 (8.7) 48.1 (8.9) 39.2 (4) 28.4 (−2) 16.0 (−8.9) 10.7 (−11.8) 25.8 (−3.4)

AVERAGE LOW °F (°C) −3.7 (−19.8) −2.9 (−19.4) −0.8 (−18.2) 4.6 (−15.2) 14.3 (−9.8) 24.6 (−4.1) 33.7 (0.9) 32.9 (0.5) 24.3 (−4.3) 14.2 (−9.9) 3.9 (−15.6) −2.7 (−19.3) 11.9 (−11.2)

Source: summitpost.org

HISTORICAL NAMES

* Tava * El Capitán * Grand Pea * Heey-otoyoo’ * Highest Peak – 1806 * James Peak – 1835 * Long Mountain * Pike's Highest Peak * Pike's Peak – 1858 * PIKES PEAK – 1890

SEE ALSO

* North America
North America
portal * United States
United States
portal * Colorado
Colorado
portal * Mountains portal

* List of mountain peaks of North America
North America

* List of mountain peaks of the United States
United States

* List of mountain peaks of Colorado
Colorado

* List of Colorado county high points * List of Colorado fourteeners

* List of Ultras of the United States
United States
* Pikes Peak International Hill Climb

REFERENCES

* ^ _A_ _B_ "PIKES PEAK". _NGS data sheet_. U.S. National Geodetic Survey . Retrieved January 6, 2016. * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ _E_ "Pikes Peak, Colorado". Peakbagger.com. Retrieved January 6, 2016. * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ "Pikes Peak". _Geographic Names Information System _. United States
United States
Geological Survey . Retrieved November 15, 2014. * ^ Wroth, William, Ed. (2000). _Ute Indian Arts & Culture_. Colorado
Colorado
Springs, CO: Taylor Museum of the Colorado
Colorado
Springs Fin Arts Center. p. 51. ISBN 0-916537-12-9 . * ^ " Arapaho
Arapaho
Place Names". _ Arapaho
Arapaho
Language Archives, University of Colorado
Colorado
at Boulder_. Retrieved 2012-07-18. * ^ http://casoilresource.lawr.ucdavis.edu/gmap/ * ^ Pike, Zebulon M. (1810). _An Account of Expeditions to the Sources of the Mississippi_. ISBN 0-665-46872-5 . * ^ Robertson, Janet (2003). _The Magnificent Mountain Women: Adventures in the Colorado
Colorado
Rockies_. University of Nebraska Press . pp. 2–6. ISBN 0803289952 . * ^ Barbara, Morgan (2002). "Holmes, Julia Archibald (1838–1887)". _ Women in World History _. * ^ Nikola Tesla, The True Wireless, in Electrical Experimenter, May 1919 * ^ Charles Coulston Gillispie, Tesla, Nikola, in Dictionary of Scientific Biography, New York, Charles Scribner's Sons. * ^ Kenneth L. Corum e James F. Corum, Nikola Tesla, Lightning Observations, and Stationary Waves, 1994. * ^ "Up Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
by Auto". _Technical world magazine_. Armour Institute of Technology . 1913. Retrieved 2012-10-04. ... has safely withstood the assaults of automobiles, until July 17, 1913, when W. W. Brown, a racing driver from Kansas City, drove a machine, termed by himself the "Bear Cat", up the slopes of the Peak, a distance of twenty miles. * ^ "William Wayne "W. W." Brown a.k.a. "Cockeyed" Brown (1886-1958)". Retrieved 2012-10-04. This photograph of W. W. Brown was taken on July 17, 1913 as he drove his Model 10 Buick “Bearcat” up Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
in Colorado. He had raced the car in Winfield, Kansas just 13 days earlier. * ^ "Pike\'s Peak". _ National Historic Landmark summary listing_. National Park Service. Archived from the original on January 23, 2015. Retrieved 2007-10-15. * ^ Joseph Scott Mendinghall (December 1, 1975). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination: Pike\'s Peak" (PDF). National Park Service. Retrieved 2009-06-22. and Accompanying 5 photos, from 1975. (1.14 MB) * ^ "Pikes Peak". _ Colorado
Colorado
Ski History_. * ^ "Pikes Peak". _Colorado.com_. Retrieved July 3, 2017. * ^ Scott, Rappold. "Paving completed on Pike\'s Peak road, 13 years after Sierra Club suit". The