Local quadriplegic doctor attempts to climb Pikes Peak

Dr. Glen House, a quadriplegic since the age of 20, will attempt to climb Pike’s Peak Sept. 10 in a wheelchair to raise money for the Brain Injury Alliance of Colorado.

House, a physiatry doctor in Colorado Springs, has made the 13.5 mile trek up the 14,110-foot mountain twice before. This time, he has a new wheelchair, provided by Ki Mobility and eMotion Wheels.

“The best analogy I can give is if you try to climb Pikes Peak in a one-gear bike versus a 10-speed bike that allows you to gear down,” House said. “The technology is called a push assist. It makes it easier, for example, to go across grass; it has a hill lock so I won’t go backward if I stop to rest.”

House is the medical director of the Center for Neuro & Trauma Rehabilitation at Penrose Hospital in Colorado Springs and the host of a radio talk show geared to the disabled community called “Dr. House: Living With and Beyond Disability” on www.HealthRadio.net.

House was an avid body builder and extreme skier before breaking his neck and injuring his back 21 years ago.

His attempt to climb the peak is part of the annual Pikes Peak Challenge, a fundraising event for BIAC, which was formed in 1980. About 500 hikers are expected to climb Barr Trail for the event.

House made the climb up Pikes Peak in 2003 with Utah athlete Muffy Davis, a multi-medal paralympic skier who used new wheelchair technology to help her make the long steep assent, which until then no other wheelchair user had done.

“The technology is amazing,” House said.

House is training several times a week.  For this climb, he will travel on the road, starting at Crystal Lake. He will travel with a team, including a doctor, to monitor his breathing.

“I’m hoping to do it in four to five hours,” he said.

For details about the event, visit pikespeakchallenge.com