Saturday, July 13, 2019
It was a cool 16 C ( 61 F ) when I got up at 6:30. I had woken up at 5:30, but I had chosen to be lazy a little while longer. Ike was in the dining room when I got there and we decided to clean out the one fridges to let it defrost, in order that we could determine the cause of the water leak from it.
At 7:30, I said my goodbyes to Abe and Yvette before walking to the ‘ Wooden Spoon ‘ restaurant, where I had agreed to meet John and Will. On the way there, they saw me walking as they drove by, so they stopped and picked me up. We had a very nice breakfast and spent time talking about many different subjects until it was finally time to go. We said our goodbyes and I walked back to camp. I have had a wonderful week working with them, however it was time for them to return home.
Shortly after I got back, Ike and I went to Donna’s house to complete some minor jobs, such as filling gaps with foam, securing a drain line and repairing a small patch of concrete. Donna is a very unique person, always happy and smiling and very appreciative of everything. Her motto is that no one leaves without a hug. She is a relatively slight woman, probably in her late 40’s or early 50’s, who used to be a truck driver. Looking at her, I would never have thought of her being a truck driver. From what I understand, Donna was involved in an unfortunate work-related accident that left her blind a few years ago, when some glass exploded in the vicinity where she was standing. I am amazed at how well she gets around her house and how perceptive she is. We received the mandatory hugs when we arrived and when we left.
We returned to camp at lunch time and my suspicions were confirmed that the problem with the fridge was a plugged water drain line. After we cleared the line, the fridge was cleaned, plugged in and the food was food was packed back into it.
I spent the afternoon doing laundry and relaxing. I was sitting outside with Ernie and working on a crossword puzzle in the evening, when Cole asked if we wanted to go for a hike up Observation Mountain, so we decided to accompany him. We drove to the entrance to the Observation Mountain Trail and started the hike to the top. Unbeknownst to us, the hike was quite steep with a lot of switchbacks.
As we climbed the mountain, we had a good view of the slag piles from the copper refinery below.
We stopped at a bench that had been placed on a flat area along the trail approximately half of the way up the mountain. We stayed there a few minutes before continuing up the mountain.
It took us about 30 minutes to get to the top, where we had a good view of Grand Forks.
Cole pointed out where the camp and the work sites were located,
while Ernie sat and admired the view.
We stayed at the top for approximately 30 minutes before we decided to head back down. There was a very rough access roadway up to the tower on the mountain, so it was suggested that we try this route because it might not be as steep. I looked on google maps and there were trails marked that showed the roadway indicating that it would bring us back to the start of the trail. Wrong!!
As we walked down the roadway, being bombarded by hundreds of mosquitos, we discussed the difficulty with which a vehicle would have trying to get up the steep, rough incline. When we were almost at the bottom of the mountain, I looked closer to Google Maps which showed the trail with the direction we were heading and I noticed that we were getting farther away from our intended destination, instead of closer. As we started back up the mountain, I finally figured out that the roadway went in the opposite direction. When we reached the top of the mountain, we headed back down the trail that we had originally taken to get up the mountain.
We were almost at the halfway down, when I noticed that my phone was missing. While Ernie and Cole continued their trek down the mountain, I rushed back up to the place I thought that I may have dropped it. I was almost at the top when I found my phone, face up, ringing in the middle of the narrow path. Cole had been calling my phone to assist me with locating it and as I answered the phone, I suggested that they should continue their descent and I would meet them at the bottom. It was after 9 pm, with dusk settling in, as I hurried down the mountain again, so when I reached the bench, I quickly took a picture of the full moon above the night lights in Grand Forks.
I reached the bottom to find Ernie and Cole waiting for me. By the time we returned to camp it was already dark. We were tired and very dirty from the find dust on the trails, however, we had some ice cream before we took some much needed showers. I was sure that I would sleep well after the hike, but that would yet remain to be seen.