This right here is why I insist when hiking Pikes Peak to be back below the treeline before 1pm. Pikes Peak tends to create its own weather, and afternoon storms during the summer are very common.
You can see where the treeline begins. From there it’s about 3 miles to the peak. The first mile or so provides minimal shelter in the form of caves, but unless you’ve hiked the trail before and know where to look you won’t be able to find them in a storm.
Those 3 miles can take 3 hours to hike, so for those of you who think after you hit the treeline it’s only an hour or so to the top, think again. I talk to so many people hiking for their first time up Pikes Peak who seriously misjudge the hiking time (difficulty, necessity for water, etc.) and are astonished to learn this.
Good Luck Hikers! I love giving hiking/backpacking advice for Pikes Peak. Feel free to ask questions about Barr Trail!