Altitude Sickness Denver: A Must-Read Guide With 3 Ways To Prevent Altitude Sickness

Altitude Sickness Denver

There's a lot of excitement about visiting Denver, except for altitude sickness! We at the mile-high city of Denver want you to have a wonderful time in our town, so we've prepared this easy to read guide for altitude sickness help and prevention in Denver. We want you to be feeling good also when visiting outlying areas, such as Breckenridge or Vail.

It is a well-known fact that awareness regarding altitude sickness in Denver is crucial to ensuring an enjoyable trip. Prevention is the best way to ensure you avoid altitude sickness, and we'll dive into 3 ways you can do so. Even if you never happen to experience altitude sickness while in Denver, you're highly likely to experience it when at higher elevations in other areas of Colorado you may visit – so be prepared.

Altitude Sickness Denver

prevent altitude sickness in Denver
Nicknamed the Mile High City, Denver is 5,280 feet above sea level. If you plan on visiting Denver (or even Colorado Springs), and you aren't already acclimated to the altitude, it's important that you take the necessary precautions. Altitude sickness can cause headaches, nausea and sometimes even hospitalization if not properly prepared.

Altitude sickness, which can also be known as acute mountain sickness (AMS), is a temporary condition that occurs when a person climbs to higher altitudes. It can affect anyone who rapidly ascends to high altitudes of 8000 feet, but also can occur at 5000 feet like in Denver, and it's most common among people who travel from sea level to higher altitudes.

Denver, Colorado is one of the most desirable cities in the United States. It's beautiful, it's full of vibrant and exciting activities, and it has a wonderful climate. In addition Colorado is one of the most beautiful states in the US and attracts thousands of tourists each year, the state is home to several magnificent natural wonders, including Pike's Peak, Garden of The Gods, Rocky Mountain National Park, and more.

Can You Get Altitude Sickness In Denver?

can you get altitude sickness in denver
You may ask will I get altitude sickness in Denver? Yes, you definitely can get altitude sickness in Denver, although usually on the mild side and not severe like in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.

Altitude sickness is a type of hypoxia that occurs at higher altitudes with less oxygen, like with Denver at 5280 feet high. Hypoxia is a deficiency of oxygen in the body. When people travel from lower altitudes to higher altitudes, their bodies need time to adjust to the lower levels of oxygen in the atmosphere. Altitude sickness can occur when this adjustment happens too quickly or too slowly. 

Denver Altitude Sickness Symptoms

As air pressure decreases with less oxygen in Denver at 5280 feet high, the body works harder to breathe and distribute oxygen throughout the body.

During this period, which may last for several days or even up to their whole visit, some people experience symptoms of altitude sickness.

Denver altitude sickness symptoms:

  • Headache
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Dizziness
  • Disorientation
  • Insomnia
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling ill

These type of symptoms can usually start within 6-24 hours upon arrival in Denver.

Denver Altitude

avoid altitude sickness in Denver
Famously known as the mile high city, Denver altitude sits as 5,280 feet high. As one of America's highest cities, Denver is considered high-altitude according to Mountain Medicine.⁴

Altitude of Denver:

  • Denver altitude - 5,280 ft (1609 m)

The altitude in Colorado only increases as you enter the Rocky Mountains. From Breckenridge to Vail and Aspen to Telluride, ski resorts and mountain destination go to elevations between 7,000 and 14,000 feet. Hence the nickname 14'er for mountains above 14,000 feet.

Here are a few of the high-altitude cities of Colorado:

  • Vail altitude - 8150 ft (2,484 m)
  • Breckenridge altitude - 9,600 ft (2,900 m)
  • Aspen altitude - 7,908 feet (2,438 m)
  • Telluride altitude - 8,750 ft (2,667 m)

Whether visiting Denver or one of the other many high-altitude cities of Colorado, it's best to be well prepared for the altitude sickness.

How Common Is Altitude Sickness In Denver?

For Denver, about 8%-10% percent of visitors are reported to experience altitude sickness.

25%-30% percent of visitors in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, according to the University of Colorado School of Medicine, get acute mountain sickness. Some references state as high as 40% of visitors.

How To Avoid Altitude Sickness In Denver: 3 Ways To Prevent It

Altitude sickness can be a problem for anyone visiting Denver, a city that sits at the elevation of one mile above sea level.

As a company with over a decade of high-altitude experience in Denver, here are some tips to avoid altitude sickness if you're traveling to Denver. It's best to know how to prevent altitude sickness if possible than to deal with the nasty symptoms later!

Here's 3 ways to avoid and prevent Denver altitude sickness:

1. Hydrate

Drink plenty of water when you arrive in Denver. Dehydration is one of the leading causes of altitude sickness. Drink water when you arrive in Denver and continue drinking as much as possible in order to prevent dehydration during your stay.

To maximize hydration consider adding electrolytes, or using sea salt on your foods which contain up to 84 electrolytes and minerals.

2. Rest and Acclimate

Get ample rest and stay cautious of doing any highly physical activities the first 1-2 days of arrival. Strenuous activities could certainly increase your chances of altitude sickness or increase your symptoms.

Altitude sickness may also be prevented if you have ample amount of time to acclimate on your way up to a high altitude and get more air while breathing slowly and deeply. If you plan to visit other higher altitude areas of Colorado--such as Vail, Breckenridge, Colorado Springs, Aspen--stay at minimum one night in Denver to help acclimate before proceeding to your next destination.

3. Our secret weapon

best altitude remedy Colorado
As a local product, our Zaca Hydration + Liver Aid chewables are sold throughout Colorado for many altitude usages. It's a popular choice among locals, and visitors alike.

A study has shown that high altitude can significant decrease glutathione by 43%-45%. Zaca supplements glutathione, which is considered the body's master antioxidant, to help increase glutathione levels and combat free radical damage.

Loaded with hydration support, antioxidants and amino acids, Zaca will help your body feel better faster. It's best to take 1-2 packets of chewables the day before you arrive in Denver, then a packet a day during your visit (or as much as needed).

Try our sugar-free Recovery Chewables now for your next trip!




1. Don’t let altitude sickness ruin your trip to Colorado
2. Effect of high altitude (7,620 m) exposure on glutathione and related metabolism
3. Altitude Sickness in Denver: Symptoms and Remedies
4. Effects of high altitude on humans
5. Denver Elevation