Let’s get to my favorite part of these hikes Erica talked about earlier. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’s hard not to enjoy the beautiful scenery and amazing views the mountains and trails provide. And the exercise that we get from these 20 mile…errr supposedly 9 mile hikes is not to be taken for granted. But one of the best things about hiking is the celebratory beer at the mountain top or the apres (this is a new word to me since I moved to Colorado by the way) beer on the way home.
Sometimes I need a little motivation to get through some of our more rigorous hikes. So I started throwing a beer in my backpack. It acts like a little carrot to keep me going until we get to the summit. The hike up is always exhausting, so it’s nice to have an ice cold beverage to enjoy while taking in your surroundings from 14,000 ft. Beer has rarely tasted so good. Ice cold beer, you say? Well not at first. The first few times I did this, I had luke-warm beer at best. I would just throw a can in my pack and it would generally be warm by the time I got to the top. Last summer as a wedding present we received two Yeti koozies from my good friends from high school. At first, I thought this was a silly idea. I had seen these things before and thought why would I need a Yeti koozie. If you are drinking a beer long enough for it to get warm than you aren’t drinking it fast enough. I can’t say how wrong I was. These things are awesome any time, but they are particularly amazing for hiking. Never again will I have a warm beer on the mountain top!
Any beer is going to be good, but I always try and pick something extra delicious as a summit treat. My top 3 recommendations right now (all of which come in cans for easy transportation) are:
- Lately, Telluride Face Down Brown has been the winner. Obviously it’s a brown ale, but it’s not too strong or dark. So it’s still a great beer in the summer.
- Lambda Lambda Lambda is a triple IPA from Melvin Brewing in Jackson Hole. This beer might be my favorite beer right now. If you want something to pack a little more of a punch, I recommend this for sure. It’s 13% ABV. Beware, it might be a little much for a hike.
- Odell’s Drumroll APA. It is an easy drinking American Pale Ale. Bonus, the can art is really cool. This may not be a beer for everyone as my brother has told me as cool as the can is, it’s not his favorite beer.
Bonus Beer: For any south east coasters out there, Tropicalia (if you can find it!)
Brewery bonus: Speaking of, on our way home from our most recent hike to Pawnee Pass we had to make a pit stop at Avery Brewing. I love Avery’s new brewery by the way. That place is awesome and they always have brews on tap that you can only get there. I really enjoy sours these days and they are particularly good on a 90 degree day. I partook in the Ginger Sour they had on tap. It was delicious. And it was even better because The tap ran dry about 3/4 through the pour. They gave me that beer and then they were going to come back with the rest when it was back in working order. They ended up bringing me whole beer. Winning! Erica had a citrus IPA. It was good, but I’m starting to be over these citrus IPAs.
PS – we aren’t sponsored by Yeti or anything, we just love their products and use them all the time!