WELL! We four heroes were supposed to climb Camelback Mountain. We got there bright and early, thinking we would get this thing done before the worst heat of the day. At about 0.37 miles up the hike was to become "extremely difficult"--according to the sign at the bottom. Ah! I pointed this out to my brother-in-law, who had put us up to this expedition. We were instructed to have lots of water and cell phones and decent footwear, and so on... Good grief! Here stood my husband in his sandals. I myself, nor he, actually, have ever completed an "extremely difficult" hike before. But the brother-in-law was not to be deterred. This guy from his office made it up, and so we should be able to do it, too. ( I assumed he was comparing us to some heavy-set or sluggish person, but afterward I found out that he was talking about some very fit person.) So, here we go.
After the 0.37 miles was a beautiful look-out (see the second picture), with a stone bench one could sit on very comfortably and enjoy the view. At this point, there was another big warning sign with the picture of a young man who had died on the mountain to strengthen the effect of the message. After a few more meters, the trail trended pretty much vertically up, so that you had to pull yourself up by a bar (see the first picture). That was the end for me and my sister-in-law. We decided to do the lower bit over and over, until the heroic men came back.
All sorts of extremely fit young people seemed to be practically running up this mountain. It looked like it was part of their daily exercise routine. One man was on his second trip up carrying weights in both hands.
Well, our men took forever, and for a bit we thought the emergency helicopter had come for them. But the helicopter flew off again. Thankfully, it just circled the mountain. My sister-in-law said that she would kill her husband if he had done something to himself. And then when he came down, he really had done something to himself. He had really hurt his foot. He was sore and swollen the whole rest of the holiday, and when we went to the mall we had to get a wheelchair for him. So that was that, and early on. My husband came done ok in his sandals and all. What can we say.
I enjoyed that view quite a bit, seeing that we walked up to it several times and sat and talked with strangers and waited for a long time. There was another woman waiting and fretting for her husband. She seemed quite old, but she said her husband was fit. We assume he came down fine.