PIKES PEAK — Nearing the end of the year marks the beginning of the Pikes Peak climb for members of the AdAmAn Club. On Saturday morning, the famous AdAmAn Club started their journey to the top of Pikes Peak in order to set up the New Years Eve firework display.
They gathered for a big breakfast with their families in Manitou Springs before the hikers said their goodbyes and went to the trail head.
Every year they add one new member to their group, hence the name, ad-a-man. The President of the AdAmAn Club, Dan Stuart, said he has done the Pikes Peak New Years Eve climb 30 times.
"It's absolutely the highest altitude New Year's Eve celebration in the world," Stuart said.
The club is made up of a unique group of mountaineers.
"This is the 101st trip up Pikes Peak, our sole goal is to make it to the summit to set off fireworks for Colorado Springs to help celebrate the new year,” Stuart said.
The climbing tradition started back in 1922, with the frozen five.
"Five mountaineers headed up Pikes Peak, they were sponsored by the Gazette, they did a New Year's Eve watch party, we call them the frozen five," Stuart said.
Members climb with their guest, who they are responsible for. To become a member people must go through an application process. Only one man or woman is inducted as a new member per year.
"We can only add one new member each year, so guests tend to climb for five to ten years before they become members," Stuart said.
The 2023/24 new member of the year is Britt Jones.
"It is a unique experience to be a part of," Jones said.
Jones said it is an honor to be a member of the AdAmAn Club.
"It's been about a 10 year journey to finally get in and be expected as a member,” Jones said.
Jones said he had an outstanding mentor that introduced him to mountaineering and his passion for climbing mountains is why wanted to spend New Year's Eve up on Pikes Peak.
"Mountaineering is the one sport that encompasses the physical, the mental and the spiritual,” Jones said.
Over the years Jones has summited all of the Colorado 14ers, but it's the pikes peak firework trek that he's been waiting for.
"So there was a time I was going to bed with my head on my pillow looking up at Pikes Peak at New Year's Eve watching. The fireworks went off and I said I would love to be on that summit when those fireworks go off,” Jones said.
This time you got his chance. The climbers left the trail head around 9am on Saturday morning.
"And then they will get to Barr Camp around 2pm in the afternoon, and spend the night there,” Stuart said.
He said on December 31st they will try to reach the summit before it is dark.
“We have to set up the fireworks at that point, the fireworks are trucked up ahead of time, but we have to wire them up and make sure everything is operational,” Stuart said.
Both climbers are looking forward to giving Colorado Springs a fantastic show this holiday.
"It is a treat for us and obviously we do it for Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak region," Stuart said.
The first firework show will begin at 9 o'clock. They will set off five fireworks to honor the frozen five. There is also a second round of fireworks at midnight to ring in the new year.
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