Weather: 98°, sunny
Time: 34 minutes
About this hike: Since what happened on May 6 when I nearly shattered my knee I've been afraid to hike. And then the past week and a half temperatures have been near 120° some days, and well, I'm not that big of a die hard.
Today is "only" forecasted to reach a high of 110°, so it was a perfect morning for a hike. I arrived around 9am to a "Lot Full" sign. There were only a handful of cars, but I imagine park rangers leave that sign displayed in an attempt to discourage foolish hikers in this heat.
The mountain was not crowded and I enjoyed a lot of peaceful self-reflection time. At one point it was so quiet I heard something slithering under a rock. Another run in with mother nature--a hummingbird zoomed over my head and scared the heck out of me.
I met a few interesting characters including one guy who was hiking up with a big bag full of water bottles to hand out. He asked me if I needed one but I politely declined...I did come prepared.
Anyway, I'll forgive my sub-30 minute time to the summit. I stopped regularly for hydration breaks. A guy at the summit was bragging how today was his slowest time in years--27 minutes. He made me feel slow and out of shape. He then proceeded to announce to everyone that he had some pushups to crank out...so yeah...that type.
Coming down took even longer as I was more cautious. I realized why I fell on May 6--my hiking shoes have lost their support and the treads don't seem to be getting good traction anymore. Those dusty shoes have served me well, especially during this winter of "funemployment" when hiking was pretty much a daily ritual.
Regardless, it's June in PHX, it's hot, and I'm glad to be back at the Camel's Back.