Today’s Field Notes is about one of the scarier days I’ve spent in the mountains in Colorado.
I thought I was going to die. Twice. Perhaps that’s a tad dramatic. But yikes, really, I thought I was gonna die!
One of my companions for that day, Ben, concurred that it was one of his scariest days out in the mountains, too. When you’re a climber, getting scared becomes commonplace. On this day, though, the lightning put the scariness quotient over the top.
Today’s column includes some science action, too. Meteorologist Joel Gratz helped me out by explaining exactly how the monsoon in Colorado works. He also gave me a refresher on the 30-30 rule for lightning. You need more distance between you and the lightning than you might think — which is pretty alarming if you’re well above treeline when you hear that first rumble.
The monsoon is in full swing right now, so be careful out there. Gratz said he tells people to go two hours earlier than you think you should. That’s good advice. What’s the worst that could happen?:
You’ll see sunrise on a glorious Colorado peak.