5:30 a.m. Layton Kor stepped into the spare bedroom in his house and switched on the light. “Okay boys,” he said, “it’s time to get up.”
The night before Layton had said, “We’ll get an early start tomorrow, that way we can spend all day if we need to, to get up the climb.” Ed Webster and I awoke groggy. It had been a long drive down from Colorado to Kingman, Arizona the day before. Moments before Layton had wakened Dennis sleeping on the living room sofa. Dennis said he woke to a huge hand gripping his shoulder and a quiet voice saying, “Time to get up. We’ve got a climb to do today.”
The four of us—Layton, Ed, Dennis Jump, and I—drove over to Cracker Barrel, Kor’s favorite restaurant. “They have crispy bacon there,” he said, “it's fantastic.” During breakfast the sun came up, illuminating a long row of desert mountains. We drove west, over the mountains and across Golden Valley, then southwest on dirt roads to the edge of the Mt. Nutt Wilderness Area.