Wednesday, September 21, 2011

HIking the Majestic Mount Timpanogos

Ahhhh............My favorite mountain and my favorite hike of all time! It's been sort of a tradition of mine to try to hike this beautiful mountain at least once a year. The last few years have been pretty intense with moving, sickness of parents, bad weather and the death of Porter. I just haven't been able to get my body up on that mountain. Well, this year I figured with the Summer winding down it was probably a good time to just invite some friends and go for it. With the extremely wet and snowy year we've experienced this Winter and Spring I had heard that there was still a lot of snow up there so it was best to wait till later. I'm glad we didn't try to go earlier because there were a few snowy fields we had to cross which made for a little bit of excitement and eh hum....snowball fights.

Laurie, Kirsten, me, Ellie, Annaleesa, Sydney
So we started our morning out by meeting at Laurie's house super early-5:00 am. I wanted to beat the morning crowd up there. After all, this was Labor Day weekend and the mountain would be packed with people, and there's only a limited amount of parking spaces at the trail head. Well, after a nice ride up American Fork Canyon and hardly any cars in sight we arrived to find out that not only was the parking lot full but that we would have to drive another 1/2 mile up the road to find parking on the side of the road wherever we could. Uggghhh.....so much for trying to be the early bird. We found parking and had a good 15 minute walk down the road just to get to the trail head. But really what's 15 more minutes when we are already hiking for almost the entire day right? We got our headlamps on, our backpacks and camelbacks and jackets and headed off.  Yes, it was still dark outside and very chilly.  We started at precisely 6:00 am and had to use our lights for about a half hour or more and then the sky started to lighten.  The hike was beautiful with lots of little water falls to cross.  We saw a moose off in a field munching on foliage.  We chatted, took turns being in front of the pack and snacked on goodies.  Somewhere near the top our group thinned out a little bit.  Two of the fast people hustled to the top.  I was in the middle and reached the saddle at 10:10 am.  The rear followed up only a little bit later. 
Laurie and her two cute daughters
You can see the little tiny hut just to the left of Laurie's neckline, which is the tallest peak on Mount Timpanogos.

One of the best parts of this whole adventure for me is reaching the saddle and finding a cozy little spot to nestle in and eat my lunch. If I'm lucky I'll also put my sweatshirt under my head and catch a few zzzzz's. After we all ate our lunch half of the group decided to head up to the very top peak where the tin hut is located. I've been up there a few times and feel perfectly content hanging back at the saddle. It's still just as beautiful to enjoy the valley and the sunshine, without the extra push, so I said good-bye to the three who headed off. That round trip should take about an hour. Well.....oops, the girls got a little lost and had to backtrack. We didn't see them for a little over 2 hours and so I was able to get a nice long nap. Annaleesa told me I was actually snoring.....hahahaha. I love it. I must have really been enjoying myself.
Ellie, Annaleesa, me
After Ellie, Sydney, and Laurie got back we got one more photo of all of us with the valley view behind us. We loaded up our gear and head back down the mountain at 12:25 pm. The descent definitely is not as hard physically unless you love your toes. They do take a beating and I had wished I would have worn a slightly larger pair of shoes. 
We arrived back to the trail head around 4:00 pm and figured we had been at this little adventure for 10 hours!! Then we had to hike another 1/2 mile or more UP a hill to get to the car. In talking to people on the trail and throughout the day it was interesting to find how many of them actually start this hike in the middle of the night and way early hours in the morning. Maybe that's the key to getting a good parking spot?

Actually, I had a fabulous day and enjoyed being with all these fun friends of mine.  Who's ready to go again?

3 comments:

Dixie Mom said...

I want to do it! I've never done it. I hope to get to go before the snow flies this year, but if not...next summer!

Doran & Jody said...

Hopefully next time I can make it!!

Kristin said...

I STILL have yet to make our annual trek to the top of Mount Timp . . . maybe on Monday - I wish I wish I wish . . .

Kristin