Naturally, I thought we would go down the mountain faster than we went up, but no. The sun was going down on us and we were worried about that, but I assured Tam I had a wee little teeny tiny flashlight in my backpack. We needed it the last 15 minutes of the descent. In the near darkness though, I took a misstep and tumbled head over heels. I couldn't catch myself and I felt a bit like a cartoon - BOING! BOING! BOING! Ahhhh, so embarassing. A bruise on my knee, my hip, my shoulder and a scratch on my elbow. But there is plenty of padding, so no worries. Tam had surgery on her knee a year ago and this was her first major hike since then. (Seriously Tam? You chose this mountain to start back your hiking routine? You're crazy.)
(Ok, Suzanne, you are off the hook. Tam is now the person trying to do me in.)
My friend talked me into climbing to the top of Camelback Mountain this afternoon. I asked the Seminary kids this morning who had been up there and how it compared to other hikes and they said, "well, it's not really like any other hike. It's more like climbing up boulders". I couldn't visualize that so I asked them "if I could get to the top of Squaw Peak, could I get up Camelback?" They were hesitant to give me a thumbs up on that idea. So I was nervous.
Tam is a super athlete, always has been. But she is also very patient and assured me we could do it. I trusted her until I saw this--THERE'S NO TRAIL!! Oh my gosh, it really was just like climbing up boulders. As we were making our way slowly to the top, I was questioning whether or not my knees were going to be strong enough to bring me back down. I really wasn't sure. Really.
The trail is a mile and a half up. Straight up. Parts of the trail even have a handrail imbedded in the rock to pull yourself up the steep sections.
But we made it in record time (the record for the slowest ascent ever). The view from the top was SPECTACULAR! It is a breathtaking 360 degree view. I would have enjoyed sitting up there for an hour and just enjoying the view. However, it was 5:30 p.m. and we weren't sure how long it would take us to get back down so we stayed long enough to take a picture.
Anyway, on another note, we saw a chuckwalla earlier in the afternoon. Can you see it sunning on the rock?
I had never heard of a chuckwalla before last week. It's a big lizard. I've seen two of them in the past eight days. Weird. But I like saying the name -- "Chuckwalla, Chuckwalla, Chuckwalla".