Day 279

It’s starting to get a little warmer in Flagstaff. This morning when we woke up it was already 45 degrees outside and the sun was shining bright. The kids ate breakfast and went outside with Jenn to play hopscotch and had blast. Jenn was laughing about how she used to play serious games of hopscotch in Brooklyn when she was a kid.

I honestly have never played hopscotch and would never have thought there was very much to it. I always just jumped through the boxes and turned around to come back. The way I play is fun.

After the girls had their fun outside we made lunch, cleaned up and did some school work with the kids. I finally got out on our hike at 4:45pm and decided that we could make the peak today. So, we hike up Fatman’s loop to the summit trail. We made it to the Summit trailhead in 20 minutes flat which was great time and we bumped into a couple coming down the mountain and asked a few questions while keeping our social distance.

They said that the trail took about 1 hour round trip to the summit and back but, that they weren’t crazy enough to do it. Jenn and I looked at each other and laughed. Off we went, up the mountian. About an hour into our climb, Jenn and I were looking at each other wondering why we were no where near the top. The trail went from a nice hiking trail into a cliff that we were hiking straight up. We were going up 20 vertical feet per minute which is very steep.

Then we met a couple we knew from our 4 weeks of hiking. We kept passing them on our hikes and, since they were coming down, we decided to ask them how far we were from the peak. They said they didn’t make the peak today and that they found out the lookout tower was closed anyway. But, they said we were about 900 vertical feet from the peak. Should take about 45 minutes more to get there. They had a mobile app, a map, a backpack and food. We felt underprepared but, we kept going. About 20 minutes later we decided we could not go any further without more water, some food and warmer clothing. It continued to get colder and colder as we hiked and at some point we couldn’t feel our fingers any more. I believe we were 20-25 minutes from the peak and we decided to turn back. I know we were real close but, hiking down in the dark wasn’t an exciting concept for us and we were both cold and exhausted.

It was 6:15pm when we started down and hiking down a steep slope was challenging. The dirt kept slipping out from under our hiking shoes and we had to be extremely careful not to land wrong or twist an ankle. When we finally made it back to the campground it was 7:15pm and the sun had set 20 minutes ago. We were both starving from 2 1/2 hours of hiking with food and decided to do it differently next time. Where is that couple who said the hike to the peak was an hour round trip? If I find him I might say something like, you almost killed my wife and I. LOL.

We survived another day in Flagstaff.

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