...just reminiscing about the time I climbed Eagle's Peak. Would like to hear stories from others who have done it and put out a challenge to parents of new cadets. DD entered the Academy in 2011. Had toured the area in 2010. Developed a bucket list of things I wanted to see and do before DD graduated. Looked like she was going to graduate in 2015 without me having achieved the goal of climbing Eagle's Peak! It was always something...bad weather approaching, other things to do, lack of confidence in my fitness, me worrying that my wife couldn't do it, she worrying that I couldn't do it, reading stories about cadet parents or grandparents trying to do it and having to be rescued, or others having medical emergencies during the climb. Finally, senior year, Parent's Weekend. Our DD had just undergone Lasik and had to wear sunglasses anytime she was outside, thus she was excused from the (Friday morning?) parade (sunglasses not permitted during parade) and other events that day. She asked my wife and I what we wanted to do. I thought to myself, last chance, chicken! We set off to climb Eagle's Peak! I was 55 years old, and my wife older than me. My wife was never athletic, but always walked a lot. I was slightly overweight, hadn't regularly exercised in a long time, but otherwise was in good health. Our DD had done the climb several times before with friends and during squadron events. I knew dogs could do it, so I figured we could and off we went. There are plenty of warning signs about the risks involved in the climb and the possible presence of bears and mountain lions. My daughter and wife seemed to always be a hundred feet ahead of me. DD kept complaining about me asking how much farther we have to go. There is one beautiful part where the trail opens up to a meadow-like area...good place for a rest. Actually, after awhile, any place became a good place for a rest! After that though, I believe there was a lot of actual climbing on all fours over boulders. We did reach the top, only meeting 1 person with their dog on the way up (and meeting a few people on the way down). The 360 degree view from the top is amazing in itself. We got a special surprise when one of the Academy's aircraft (possibly one that dropped Wings of Blue) flew right past us at our elevation, close enough for the pilot and us to see each other and wave at each other. The pilot even dipped his wing to us in a friendly gesture! The way down was something else. On your way down, you are using a completely different set of muscles in your legs - or at least using the same muscles in a different way. I began to feel slight pain in my knees but nothing to stop me. You've got to watch yourself as well on your way down as the tiny rocks that you think are good footholds for each step tended to shift under your body weight. About three quarters of the way down I was about done in. My legs felt like the proverbial jello. I couldn't tell I had a knee, ankle or any bone structure....couldn't tell which way my legs were supposed to bend! My wife and DD had a good laugh when I told them to go ahead, I'd meet them at the Visitor Center parking lot! Very difficult hike but well worth it!!!! I think it is about a 3 1/2 mile round trip hike with about an average 13 degree grade and an ascent of about 2000 feet. I think the sign at the trail head said the average time to complete was 1 1/2 - 2 hours. I think it took us a little over 3 1/2 hours. I suppose some of that time was spent enjoying the view from atop, and some was due to my wife and DD always having to wait for me while taking breaks/catching my breath. Had a beautiful time - a memory that will last forever! Anyone else have a story to share about climbing Eagle's Peak?