My dad is home now. Thanks for the prayers!
Also, you know, I have returned. Unfortunately, due a combination of nasty surprises and human error, we didn't summit the mountain. We did get farther than my brother did last time, however, and given the fact that it was our first camping trip without parental assistance and my first backpacking trip, we did rather well.
The biggest nasty surprise was a broken radiator cap on my car on the way in that cost us a day of hiking time, and then a previous flash flood actually wiped out a trail head and made the trail we were hiking more difficult to navigate. These delays made it so we ran out of time and had to turn around halfway up the mountain to avoid being caught out up there in the dark.
While we were decent humans to everyone we encountered, we didn't really get the chance to share the Gospel this trip. With this one, we were more the recipients of love than the givers. The guy who diagnosed our coolant leak and figured out it was the cap and got us back on the road instead of making us wait around for days deserves a medal. Also, on our last day of hiking, we had to navigate the flash flood area using headlamps in the dark, and we got lost, and God sent us some people heading toward us to show us the correct direction and get us out of there.
@Beth_Applemine I'd wait until you are older for this particular mountain, heh. The issue is not that I don't believe that you can climb the mountain - I'm sure you can. The issue is the backpacking trip on the way in, and the pack is 30-40 pounds or so with the tent and everything. It's really heavy, too heavy for a child to carry.
If one wanted to go backpacking with children, I think a llama or mule would be the only way to go, and the trail I was on had some sections that no pack animal would be able to go up, I think. The rock scramble in the bowl leading up to the mountain is not llama friendly, and a lot of folk actually take their backpacking packs through the rock scramble and camp at the base of the mountain so they can summit it quicker. We didn't do that due to lack of time, but if we did it again that would probably be the plan.
Thanks for praying for us. We're still alive, and that's the most important thing. Praise the Lord! If anyone knows any blister treatments that work, send them my way lol. My toes are covered in them. And I think that sums it up. Stay home, play the Aetherlight, fewer blisters.