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54 Fourteeners in Winter

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Twenty-eight-year-old Hamish Gowans has climbed 21 Colorado fourteeners in the first month and a day of this winter, making steady progress in a bid to solo all 54 of the Colorado fourteeners in a single calendar winter. Starting with a climb of Longs Peak on a bitterly cold Dec. 21, during which Gowans frostnipped his toes, he has bagged another 20 peaks in a total of 13 climbing days. But many of the toughest and most remote peaks still lie ahead. Only two people have ever climbed all of the Colorado fourteeners in winter, and each required multiple seasons. Although the peaks rarely involve technical climbing, even in winter, they are guarded by deep snow, avalanche terrain, fierce winds, and vertical gains averaging 4,000 to 5,000 feet. Gowans first tried the 14’ers last winter but abandoned the attempt after contracting viral pneumonia. See www.wildsnow.com/articles/hamish-gowans-fourteeners/colorado-fourteeners-gowans.html for occasional updates on Gowans’ quest.