At first, hiking a 14er may seem like a daunting and frightening challenge, and to be blunt, there are good reasons to feel this way. Hiking a 14er is not like going for a quick hike in the foothills; you cannot simply go out on a whim and have a safe, successful, enjoyable experience. First off, the routes to the tops of these 14,000ft behemoths are usually longer than a typical day hike; few routes are shorter than 5 miles. Not only are they longer, but the terrain you will typically encounter is more rugged. Then you have to take into consideration the fact that most of the hike will be at a high elevation.