The next day, I was really sore from the hike and sleeping on the ground. We drove to a cinder cone that formed in the 1700s. It was by something called the Fantastic Lava Flows, and they were indeed fantastic—piles and piles of black volcanic rocks that looked like someone had pushed them there with a bulldozer. I saw this little creature.

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer

We started down the path to hike the cinder cone. Problem was, it was covered with this ground volcanic ash, so it was like hiking on sand. The two-mile hike quickly started to seem a like more to my tired muscles and sore back. I was trying to be tough and suck it up, but I am not tough or good at sucking it up.

Then the cinder cone came into view.

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer

It looked like a giant pyramid. You could see the tiny people on the top. I thought, I do not want to climb that. As we approached, I realized that there was a steep, sandy path going right up the side of the cone.

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer

I let Justin, Stephanie, and Kyle climb to the top and I went back to a lake and edited sort stories. Apparently there was a huge crater and pretty views at the top. Here are the pictures Kyle took:

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer


Three kinds of terrain.

Another view

As amazing as that is, I was glad I didn’t push myself to go on the rest of that hike. If I hadn’t been so sore, I would have done it, but as it was, I was happier editing short stories. After all, look what that hike did to Justin and Stephanie:

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer

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