Altitude was not a factor for us as our normal hunting grounds are @ 7000'+ and we're only at ~4500'. The last time I did serious mountain biking was in 1996 and this was a last minute decision for us. IMHHO, there is nothing wrong with my work out. The same work out prepared me for a 10-day 80-mile backpacking trip in the Bob Marshall Wilderness carrying 63 pound pack. I'm only 5'6" and 160 LBS. Similarly, my friend (5'8" ~175 LBS) do more weight exercise than cardio but he hauled a mature cow elk whole (not quartered or anything) by himself last year for 1.5 miles. He managed to haul in onto a card with 4" of snow, and load it onto his truck ... it took him 3+ hours. The bikes are rental equipment from our base outdoor rec, not the greatest set up for comfort. I have to admit, the worst part of my body that is aching is where it has something to do with the seat ... if you know what I mean. This was also a test on the equipment and a feedback is due to the outdoor rec director and SQ deputy commander on Tuesday. The point I was making about my workout is that I do it all year around and there are guys out there that go into the hunt without physical and mental preparations and expect to perform accordingly without any problem. On our way back we ran into a couple of hikers on their late 40s early 50s about a mile from where we parked. All they have was hiking staff, no water, no bear defense. They asked us how far to the end and what have we encountered. We told them it's ~5 miles and we saw a couple of black bears. While talking, another young hiker with a pack on his early 20s showed up and joined in with conversation. He seems fit and prepared but again no bear defense. They all turned around.