Saturday, December 31, 2005

Adding and subtracting

As I write this, the members of the AdAmAn club are making their way up Barr Trail. Their destination: the summit of Pikes Peak. Their mission: To usher in the New Year with what has to be the highest fireworks display in the world. The group is legendary, and deserves the attention it gets each year. But the AdAmAn climbers aren't the only ones with a New Year's Eve mission. Enter SubtractAmAn, a group that has shared the trail with AdAmAn since 1989.
The group was founded by Frank Reetz, a Denver educator, and Dennis Weid, of Canon City to honor friends and pets who had died. The two men came up with the group's name partly as a spoof on AdAmAn, but mostly because they were honoring the dead - those who had been "subtracted from life."
On SubtractAmAn's first New Year's Eve climb, Reetz says there was a little friction between the two groups, but since then, they've learned to get along. Just like the AdAmAn members, this group has had to endure brutal winter weather on their annual climbs, but it looks like this year will be easier. - Deb

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