Altitude meds


New member
Aug 26, 2015
I'm heading to Colorado for OTC.  My GMU ranges from 9000 to 11000 feet.  I'll probably camp at 9,500 feet.

I'm coming from Wisconsin.

How concerned should I be about altitude sickness?
What should I do to minimize risks?
Do the meds like those from Wilderness Athlete work?
This is the first year I am trying meds. I haven't gotten altitude sickness in the past but I figured it can't hurt much to try it.
One thing that I learned from an old timer in hunters education here in Colorado (I am originally from Michigan) is this:
Original formula rolaids not another brand and not any other kind of rolaids. chew up 4 into a liquid in your mouth >> hold for 5 minutes >> swallow.  It sounds crazy but it works well and others that have been with me camping above 10000 feet have had a positive result. 
The other biggest tip I have is drink tons of water.
Staying hydrated is big.  Keep drinking....Also, if you can get out a day or two prior to hunting, so you can do some short walks, light exercise, and slowly get acclimated, that will also help.  Where some guys get into trouble is trying to do too much too quick.  Oh, and drink lots of water!!  Good luck and enjoy.
I to am from low elevation  (700'asl). After my last trip where we were between 8500-10000', I am now determined to be in much better shape than the last time.  At 8500-9500, I just felt fatigued, but when we were at 10000, I had severe headaches.  We do drive to MT, and spend the night in WY at 6500', which does give us an extra day to acclimate.  Anyway, my altitude meds this year is alot of running.  It can't hurt to be in better shape, but my hopes are that my lungs will be much stronger which will help with oxygen intack.  So now I'm running 5k's as my "medicine" , and feel better than ever.
If all else fails, you'll start feeling better after about the 3rd day anyway.
Good article on ibuprofen for altitude sickness. Only thing I've ever used.
I take Tums or Rolaids and aspirin or Ibuprofen on the trip out. Continue to take them for a couple days after setting up camp. Aspirin thins the blood and helps carry oxygen in the blood, the added calcium helps to remove latic acid from the muscles from climbing those mountains.

I was told this is an old military recipe and it seems to help me.
Good question. Altitude sickness affects each person differently and many people don't even feel sick.  It is really important to stay extra hydrated and expect your muscles to feel a little more fatigued than normal.

Some Utra-marathon runners swear that training in heat and humidity conditions the body for altitude. They typically spend time in the sauna before altitude races.
I like to make sure I'm staying hydrated and getting lots of iron, IE eating leafy greens red meat etc.  Also when I go to hard I start to get a headache.  When this happens it is important to stop and rest for a minute. Also ibuprofen helps if the headache gets out of control, but be careful with that stuff its not good for you.
I used Ginkgo biloba back in the early 2000's when I was able to elk hunt. I forget the dosage but looked it up and this sounds about right.

For altitude (mountain) sickness, 160 milligrams of ginkgo (EGb 761®) once daily or 120 milligrams of ginkgo twice daily has been taken by mouth for 4-5 days.

I do remember I started a day before going to altitude I think I took 2 capsules a day but just not sure.
i'm gonna talk to my doctor. 

i'm going to 14,000 feet this year..hiking.  i want the meds as insurance.  hate to jack up a vacation spitting bloody mucus into a bottle.

i am gonna aclimate two days and fill my pocket with coco leaves. :)
Great Stanford research USMCVET on ibuprofen for altitude sickness. Ive been hunting elk since 1991 and just turned 52. The last two years ive been hit very hard with the acute mountain sickness. Getting to lower elevation is all that helped me for 2 days then gradually worked back up in my elevations. Also THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE.
Arrive early enough to acclimate and hydrate to excess. Work into your hiking routine slowly at first and have Advil with you. I have been sick a few times, no fun.
I took meds on my first trip out from KY in 2005 and then didn't take them again until last season since we were camping at 10600.  It did seem to reduce headaches after the very active days.

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I have a prescription ready. I have asthma, so my doc insisted I at least have it in my quiver.

I?m gonna chew coco leaves like a cow as well. :)
Fyi you're supposed to start taking them a few days before you ascend.

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I have been wondering the same thing about the ibprofen.  Heading to Colorado in September camping at 9500-10000 feet and I live at just a shade under 2000ft. 

what do the coco leaves do? Never heard of that.
n2mywake said:
Fyi you're supposed to start taking them a few days before you ascend.

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yup.  i'm popping one in Lima.  the next day i'll be in Cusco.  which is way up there..i'm there for 3 days to acclimate, before we hike. 

then we fly to the jungle side of the country for some weird fish fishing..:D
I'm a flat lender from Pa. Last year flew to Denver and by the next night was at 9000. Hunted as high as 12500. No major problems, exercised a lot before and made it a priority to drink plenty of water during. Taking the whole family to Co this summer for a camping trip. Hope we all fair as well.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk'll be fine.

i am not prone to problems at elevations.  but it would be stupid to find out on the other side of the equater.

i carried a stupid heavy backpack over 11,000.  i was dying, but it wasnt from the elevation. :).  i was cuz i suck at packing. (my friend brought a six pack of soda)

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