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Coffee at 14,000 feet

Hey there, this is Andrea! I'm a senior barista at Bivouac so you might have seen me behind the bar, and I wanted to share some of my recent outdoor adventures with you. 

Humboldt Peak, one of Colorado’s many 14,000 ft mountains, is nestled in the Sangre De Cristo mountain range standing at 14,064 feet just barely distinguishing as a 14er. It’s not a common 14er due to its distance from Denver and lack of striking features (listed as a class 1 mountain). On my quest to hike all of Colorado’s 14ers, this stood as one of my last peaks to complete.

A few weeks back, I grabbed a good friend and set off on the journey. Since there are a few nice lakes at the base of the mountain, we decided to backpack in the night before and set up a base camp. Around 8pm that night, the winds picked up from “slightly breezy”, as the weather called for, to quite windy - around 15-20 mph winds. This set us up for a bad night's sleep. When the 4am alarm rang, I decided that facing the wind in the sun sounded a lot better than the cold & dark. We set off at 6am - typically a late start for these kinds of mountains. The peak was only 3 miles from camp and relatively easy. I decided to bring along my Jetboil, fuel, and some extra water. The next 3 miles were uphill mixed with a bit of boulder hopping - a fun feature I didn’t expect. We summited the peak at 9am, and thankfully there was a wind shelter constructed from the various rocks scattered around the summit. I was pleased with the decision to sleep in since we still made great timing. We were one of the first people on the summit that day. I fished out my Jetboil and started making our instant coffee to go along with my summit oreos (pro tip: junk food doesn’t count while you’re hiking). More hikers started piling into the wind shelter and smelled the wonderful notes of coffee. They all commented on what a great idea it was to bring coffee for an early summit and started regretting their choice of beers at 9am. To their surprise, I had a couple extra packets of instant Bivouac coffee. I was happy to fire up the Jetboil for those who had an empty cup or water bottle to spare. Though it was my day off from the coffee shop, it was easy to fall back into being a barista at 14,000 feet in the air. What better way to celebrate and enjoy this great view than with a cup of coffee shared with new friends.


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1 comment

  • Classic JerBoil! Love the coffee making at elevation! I haven’t tried it at 14k, but plenty for groups of friends at a little lower elevation. So glad you can use the great Bivouac coffee!


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