But, when I got to Colorado and started hitting really high (by USA lower-48 standards) peaks, I discovered that I do get altitude sickness. Really classic symptoms, too. Headaches, loss of appetite, dehydration, shortness of breath, nausea, reduced capacity to reason...most of the uncomfortable symptoms.
One thing about it, though...I lost a LOT of weight over the course of just a week spending most of my time between 11K and 13K feet. I pretty much stayed sick, so I had to force food down to keep from getting even sicker, and I was burning a lot of calories walking up and down those slopes at that elevation.
Another thing that I noticed is that I would awaken in the night gasping for breath whenever we camped at really high campsites.
Thus, the next time I go to such high country (and I'd like to do that in 2014...I've been looking at hiking in the Sierras in California), I want to make sure I'm in better shape than I was when I went to Colorado.
|I think I weighed about 215 or so when I got to Colorado.|
|In Rocky Mountain National Park, on the flanks of the highest peaks in the Park, where I found out altitude sickness is some serious shit.|
|In the Mount Sneffels Wilderness a few days into the trip. I think I'd already lost a few pounds. Not much, but a few.|
|Coming down from one of the high passes we had to hike. This one had been very close to 13,000 feet.|
|Lying in my tent one evening. Cold. Sick.|
|Toward the end of the trip. I think we had one full day to go. I'd lost about twenty pounds by this point. My belt was all but useless. Had it cinched as tight as it would go and had to cram a washcloth in my waist to keep it tight.|