I was brought up in an Adaman family alongside my older brother,
John. Our father, Joe Graham became a
member in 1939. Dad’s love of hiking was instilled in us
from an early age alto he could not hike long distances due to a skiing
accident on Pikes Peak that shattered his lower leg.
Dad stayed involved with the club and was always in the group who
choose a Boy Scout guest each year.
While in college at Colorado State University I climbed three volcanoes
in Mexico one Christmas break with one of those former guests, Bill
Bertchschy. (pictured in the First 50
Years page 48) Bill was an employee of
CSU and co-lead the trip with another employee.
I learned that Bill had climbed with our club as we drove south along a
narrow barely paved highway in northern Mexico.
When John and I were young on some years on New Years Eve our
family would watch the fireworks from in front of the Village Inn restaurant
downtown on Pikes Peak Avenue. That made
me want to join.
My first climb of Pikes Peak was with a high school friend in
1973 where we slept on the cement outside the east doors of the summit
house. Then the next day on July 4th we
watched the Pikes Peak Hill Climb auto race.
The following December I made my first climb as a guest with the
From 1973 to 2013 I climbed with the club 35 times. I became member 62 in 1980. My wife, Gretchen has been very supportive of
my membership in the club though she never wanted to break into a “mans” club. She has climbed many of the 14ers and has participated
many times in the Pikes Peak Ascent foot race usually placing in her age group.