Colorado’s 14,115-foot Pikes Peak is often hiked via the Barr Trail, a “mere” 24-mile round trip, and many hikers love to take their dogs along for the adventure. It’s often a bad idea. Yesterday, for reasons not reported, a dog named Roland was being carried down the latter part of the trail by his owner, who finally had to stop and call for help about 6.5 miles from the trailhead. El Paso County Search and Rescue, staffed by volunteers as are all Colorado rescue teams, responded and assisted the pup and his owner back to their car.
Coloradans love their dogs but taking them on hikes can be dangerous. The dogs can cut or burn their paws on rocky trails, fall and injure themselves, chase wildlife if not leashed, become separated from their owners, or become exhausted unexpectedly. And even if they are cooperative, their extra weight can pose a major problem for an owner trying to carry them.