### Brain Teasers

# Hiking Oddity

Situation
Situation puzzles (sometimes called lateral thinking puzzles) are ones where you need to ask lots of yes or no questions to figure out what happened in the situation. These are good puzzles for groups where one person knows the puzzle and answers the questions.Situation

I'm a fairly avid hiker, I try to go on a hiking excursion around once a week with a group of friends. We travel all over the United States to different locations to hike; just last month we went on a week long trip to California's Death Valley, where we enjoyed sweating out of our minds.

This past week, we found an oddity with our hiking experience. Instead of the trail being set up by distance, it was set up by time. For example, instead of the distance between two points being 10 miles, the markings would say they were 4 hours apart.

On this trip, we were going to hike from "Point A" to "Point C", stopping at "Point B" to rest, and eat Hot Pockets. While starting, we were sure to note that the time between Point A and Point C (the full length of the trail) was 8 hours. Upon arriving at Point B, we dined on our half lava-hot, half frozen Hot Pockets, and set back off. We noticed that the route marker leading back to Point A read 3 hours; the marker leading to Point C was also 3 hours.

Now, my friends and I aren't the smartest bunch, but we were sure that 3 hours + 3 hours sure didn't equal 8 hours. The math may not add up, but the times were, in fact, completely true. It took us exactly 8 hours to complete the A to C trip. Also, B to A was exactly 3 hours, as was B to C.

How in the world could it take 8 hours to make the trip, when the times only add up to 6?

This past week, we found an oddity with our hiking experience. Instead of the trail being set up by distance, it was set up by time. For example, instead of the distance between two points being 10 miles, the markings would say they were 4 hours apart.

On this trip, we were going to hike from "Point A" to "Point C", stopping at "Point B" to rest, and eat Hot Pockets. While starting, we were sure to note that the time between Point A and Point C (the full length of the trail) was 8 hours. Upon arriving at Point B, we dined on our half lava-hot, half frozen Hot Pockets, and set back off. We noticed that the route marker leading back to Point A read 3 hours; the marker leading to Point C was also 3 hours.

Now, my friends and I aren't the smartest bunch, but we were sure that 3 hours + 3 hours sure didn't equal 8 hours. The math may not add up, but the times were, in fact, completely true. It took us exactly 8 hours to complete the A to C trip. Also, B to A was exactly 3 hours, as was B to C.

How in the world could it take 8 hours to make the trip, when the times only add up to 6?

### Hint

Where did we hike?### Answer

If you read carefully, you should have caught that I never said where we were on this hike. I mentioned Death Valley, the flattest-of-all-flats just to get you with that mental picture. However, this time, we were hiking in a mountainous area. Point B was on top of a small mountain, A and C being on either side at the base. Going up a mountain surely takes longer than going down.Point A to Point B: Up the mountain: 5 hours

Point B to Point C: Down the mountain: 3 hours

Point B to Point A: Down the mountain: 3 hours

Point A to Point C: Up and down the mountain: 8 hours total

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