Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Timpanogos Hike #3-Conference Weekend

I finally got me a garmin forerunner 305! It's been a lot of fun tracking my running speeds and distances even though I'm still pretty slow. I know I'll never be fast but it's been fun seeing what this old body can do.

So, I pretty much love Mount Timpanogos.  I always have, even from the moment our family moved to this valley back in 1977 when I was but a young girl at the age of 11. (oops I just told how old I am)  My first adventure hiking this mountain was with a youth conference group when I was 14.  I have been fascinated with hiking this mountain ever since.

Porter has hiked this mountain a few times with me and was always so fast.  I could never keep up with him and usually got left behind with the group.  He would dash ahead with his friends and see us at the top.  Him and a friend, Brian Farnworth hiked this mountain one evening by themselves a few years ago and said they wanted to watch the sunrise.  So they took off around 10 pm one night.  It was a little after midnight and I got a phone call from him that they were at the top.  I was stunned!! He had made it in less than two hours.  I was literally blown away at how fast he could ascend that mountain. So, since they didn't want to wait on the top of a mountain all night long waiting for the sun, they turned around and came home.

Now......the reason for this hike and post.  Since hike #2 this year to the bomber was super challenging and didn't allow us to climb to the valley overlook, I decided I wanted to hike again and go to the top.  I also decided I wanted to be like Porter and see how fast I could hike this mountain.  I knew I would need to do this alone so as to be able to go at a pace that worked for me.  I also felt like sitting on top of a mountain would be a wonderful place to listen to General Conference. 

Here I am just about 20 minutes before the sun rose.
Here I am at the fork in the trail where you can go right and head to the saddle or turn left and go to Emerald Lake.
I made it to the top!
My fun, fancy watch! So, the exciting thing for me was reaching the top in 2 hours and 28 minutes, with a distance of 6.09 miles.  I know it wasn't as fast as Porter could do it but I was sure trying!
Listening to conference and enjoying the surrounding views!
At lunch time I had a little companion wanting to join me, ever so cautiously though.
The colors this time of year were so brilliant and beautiful.
I made it back to the bottom with only a slight glitch by kicking a rock near the bottom, which has turned into a lovely bruise and making me walk more like a little old lady for real now. Oh, such is life.
Round trip was 4 hours 17 minutes with a total of 12.43 miles. 

Since this hike at the beginning of October the mountain has received some hefty snowfall.  I am anxious to get up there one more time before Winter hits and have been gratefully enjoying the last few warms days as I watch the snow slowly melting.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Mondays with Mr. Miles #9

Miles found a willow statue on one of my tables in the living room and was holding it and studying it. It is a representation of Mark and Porter and was a tender gift given to Mark last Father's Day. Miles seemed to sense the importance of this piece of art and was ever so careful and gentle with it. Someday, Miles, you will know all about your uncle Porter. I can't wait for you to learn and understand who he is.

"A grandchild is a gift from above ... one to cherish and to love."
"A grandchild fills a space in your heart that you never knew was empty."
"Grandparents and grandchildren are God's gift to each other."
"You Put the Grand in Grandma."
"Whenever I see you I have an uncontrollable urge to fling open my arms, excitedly shout your name and scoop you up."

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Kali's Birthday

October is a month in which we celebrate my oldest child's birthday as well as my husbands. Here are just a few (or many) photos showing the two occasions.

Miles and Kali-We went to lunch on Friday at Rubio's.  Seriously the best fish tacos in town! Then afterwards we went shopping to one of Kali's favorite stores, Target for her to pick out her birthday presents.

Then the next evening Kali and Wade went on a date while we got to babysit the cute little Mr. Miles.  When they got back Wade brought a cake he baked all by himself for Kali to blow the candles out.
It was a team effort to get these candles eventually blown out before the wax melted all over the cake. Oops, there was only a little bit to pick off.
I would much rather take somebody shopping and have them pick out what they want than for me to make a guess.  I'm so glad Kali found a couple of items she really liked.  Although she did admit whenever she's out shopping she finds so many things she wants and then when she got to pick whatever she wanted she couldn't find anything.  It didn't take too long for her to come up with something though.  Good job Kali, I like what you picked!
After present opening we headed over to Menchies to get frozen yogurt.  It was a lot of fun picking out our flavors and toppings and doing a LOT of sampling of the 14 or more flavors.  I felt like a kid in a candy store for sure.
Jordan got a free toy at the check out counter and had fun playing with the sticky hand. So fun to see my grown-up kids 'playing'.
Me and Mark
Cooper and Miles
Happy Birthday Kali!

Mark's Birthday

I think the older we get the more we wish our birthdays would just not come around so often. Does anyone else feel that way? One of Mark's very favorite things to eat is a steak and everything sandwich at The Italian Place. When my son Cooper asked me where we were going for dad's birthday I told him we were letting daddy choose since it was his special day. I told Cooper I bet he picks Italian Place and sure enough that's exactly what he did.

Cooper and Miles were having a great time 'playing'.  It's a good thing we had the whole restaurant to ourselves because little Mr. Miles is not a quiet little dude.  That boy has a set of lungs that enjoys laughing and squealing.  It probably doesn't help either that his uncle is almost as rambunctious!

Happy Birthday Mark!
Mark got some new workout clothes and shoes for his birthday so we can continue to enjoy some racquetball time together.  He keeps telling me now he's really going to stomp me with his new gear. We'll just have to see about that.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Hiking to the Timp Bomber-Timpanogos Hike #2

If you have followed my blog for awhile you know that our son Porter loved to hike. He was good at it and did it often. This hike to the bomber on the back side of Mount Timpanogos is one of the hikes he enjoyed doing and did it multiple times when he was alive. I had never been to this particular destination on this mountain yet, and I wanted to go see for myself what Porter enjoyed. My son Cooper wanted to go as well. So, Mark, myself, and Cooper decided to spend a Saturday in memory of Porter and take this hike.
Here we are bright and early around 6:15 am ready to start the long trip up the mountain.
This is a view about a couple hours into the hike looking up to where we are headed. Just below where the clouds and the mountains meet is the point we are trying to get to.
Here is a photo zoomed in a little bit. As you can see it's rough terrain and there really is a trail, even though you can't see it.  At a certain point the trail ends and then it's just hiking through rocks and foliage to get to the bomber engine.

This hike was so incredibly hard and I'm one that usually enjoys this mountain and looks forward to hiking it.  This time it was full of challenges, scares, and moments I don't want to remember.  I do feel very lucky to be back down off the mountain and safe.  I am a firm believer in the power of prayer, and think Porter was watching over us as well.
The first thing we did when we finally made it to the bomber was to sit down and rest and get some strength into our bodies. As you can see I love food and brought just about every color under the rainbow to chow down on.
I did save some of this for later although I can put away a good sized meal!
After some rest and refueling we checked out the engine and took lots of photos and talked about Porter and his crazy love of this hike. Porter liked engines and was always tinkering around with something engine-related as he was growing up.
This is just one of the many pieces of engine scattered all over this mountain.  Porter had taken a photo of himself with a half circle of this same part when he was here.
After all this engine inspection and engine talk it was time to head to another part of the engine which was a bit further down the hill.  That's where the hike got really scary for me which involved falling down a few times and rocks rolling down the mountain and my dear husband trying to help me and then falling himself.  After stopping and having a prayer and then continuing ever so slowly we made it to the other part of the engine which is shown here.
The hike from these engines over to where we meet up with the trail again was less than a mile but took us over an hour to get to.  Once down on safe terrain I was able to relax and enjoy the rest of the hike down the mountain.  I will say I am glad I made this journey but it is definitely a trail I will not visit again. ONCE was enough for me. This was actually the second time my dear husband had hiked this route and I was just in complete awe that he was willing to go again and take us here. He's my hero!