The Ugly Journey

As I am putting on my shorts and shirt I hear my dad yelling, “Hey, Nathen, hurry up! Jack and Nick are already waiting for you!”

I start to rush, putting my clothes on as fast as I can and jump into the car. I sit next to Ryan and Nick while Jack sits up front. We head on the road and talk about how we always go to this climbing spot and go on the rock that looks like a horse’s head. My friends get so excited as we pull up and reach our favorite climbing area. I hop out and start running to the big rocks.

We always try to get to the highest mountain we can find at Joshua Tree but there is always a higher mountain to climb. On this climb, we get to the highest point we have ever gone. Usually we head back when we are halfway done with our water but this time we have a lot more water than usual. We are going at such a fast pace we are not paying attention to where we are, which causes us to get lost. We start walking back the way we came and eventually we start to go back down.

We start climbing down small rocks and after a while they turn into slightly bigger rocks. I think there is no way the rocks can get bigger than the ones we are already climbing, but sure enough, they start getting bigger. I start to get scared of the jumps we are making. After a while, we see the bottom flat rocks. There is about a tenth of a mile of bushes before we will reach our car. We do not know those bushes are actually rose bushes with many thorns. We try to continue but are so upset and stop five feet away from the bushes. My dad says he will get us ice cream when we get home but only if we go through with the plan.

Before, the worst part of us getting to our car was jumping down the rocks with two and a half foot jumps but now we have to go through a bunch of dry plants with sharp thorns. I look at my arms and legs and see I am scratched up and bleeding. I look back to see how far we have gone and it’s only about 20 feet. I start to lose hope and think we are never going to get home.

I start walking, trying to dodge the shrubs in front of me, still scared of how much farther I have to go. I see a much greater distance behind me and know we are close. I climb up and see we are a little bit more than half way. I start to smile and stop paying attention to all the cuts I have. After about 150 feet, I get to another high point and see we only have around 20 more feet until we get to the car! I start to sprint ahead of everyone because they don’t know how close we are. Now, I am free! I run to the car and hug it but it burns my skin because it has been sitting in the sun for all this time.

I see my dad and friends come out of the bush and everyone is happy. My dad puts his hands in the air with the biggest smile and we go home. I realize instead of ice cream we got a handful of bandages. But the bandages are better, and I thank my dad.

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