People came from near and far for the chance to climb from Walker Lake level to the summit of Mt. Grant whose summit is 11,239-foot Saturday morning.

Participating in this year’s 9/11 Mt. Grant Challenge, hikers are challenged both mentally and physically by the 6,829-foot ascent.

Along the route, challengers are reminded of the Sept. 11 event of 2001 when America was attacked by al-Qaeda extremists who hijacked four airplanes on a suicide mission. Two of the planes were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, the third plane hit the Pentagon outside of Washington, D.C. and the fourth plane missed it’s mark when the passenger’s of Flight 93 chose to stand their ground on the flight and landed in a field in Pennsylvania. Over 3,000 people died during this attack and America’s citizens would never forget that tragic day.

After the Sept. 11 event, Mt. Grant was closed and used mostly for training of soldiers who would use the desert terrain of Mineral County to hone their skills for Iraq and Afghanistan.

This year, competitors were cheered on by committee members of the Mt. Grant Challenge as well as SOC employees, who volunteered their time to shuttle people off the mountain.

A list of competitors who had the fastest times will be published in a future edition of the Independent-News.

Tired hikers reach the Mt. Grant summit.