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Masada is a plateau by the Dead Sea and was the site of the holdout of the last group of rebels following the destruction of the second temple and Jerusalem by the Romans. (The Jews ended up all committing suicide rather than be captured by the Romans.)

I (Rich) was at Masada in 1979 and wanted to climb it but my parents made us take the cable car up. Or at least that's my memory of it. The truth may be a bit fuzzier, and maybe I didn't really have the stamina or appropriate shoes or sufficient water for it, not to mention the fact climbing it in the daytime heat of the August sun may have just been a stupid idea. Climbing it this time was one of our must do's for the trip. We started before sunrise, although we were amazed at how hot (and sweaty) it already was. We weren't the first ones to start out, but I did pass a lot of people on the way up. One woman that I passed commented about how much energy I seemed to have, and my reply was that "I've been waiting 28 years for this." I was hoping to be the first to the top, although I was slightly disappointed when I got there and found one small group of people who had arrived before me.