Ian Green on Rum Doodle Ridge on Pikes Peak.

Ian Green on Rum Doodle Ridge on Pikes Peak. Photo by Stewart Green

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Stewart Green, Colorado Springs' prolific guidebook writer, hasn't been traveling as he normally would for various research.

"So I decided, 'You know, I should finish that book on Pikes Peak,'" he said.

The result is his self-published "Climbing Pikes Peak," which represents the vast adventure that can be had on America's Mountain.

Green, a Springs native, first ascended the peak via Barr Trail in 1963 at age 10. Since then, he's seen drastic changes in the city, widespread development.

"But up there on the mountain," he said, "it's wild."

And his book makes this much clear: The options are far wilder than Barr Trail and the other popular summiting route on the peak's backside, through Devil's Playground.

Green details trips highlighting Pikes' other well-known landmarks, such as No Name Creek, Elk Park and Bottomless Pit. But he also highlights lesser-known routes, some over ridges requiring route-finding savvy and technical skill. (The front pages of the book include tips and warnings for the uninitiated.)

A known keeper of local lore, Green sprinkles in history, as he does for Rum Doodle Ridge — "named for a fantasy mountain in the 1956 novel 'The Ascents of Rum Doodle,'" he writes. A favorite trek of his is over the peak's southwest slopes from Horsethief Park, an off-trail journey featuring Sentinel Point and its adjacent, grassy plateaus.

Green includes other summits, lower but no less spectacular, among them Sachet Mountain and McReynolds Peak. He offers five less extreme day hikes as well, including to Oil Springs, an abandoned mine shaft.

Green is scheduled to sell and sign copies ($17.95) from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19, at Mountain Chalet, 15 N. Nevada Ave.


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