It's an 18-mile hike round trip, (some people say 15, but I think 18 seems more accurate!) and the trail takes you up the back of the mountain, a low-key gradual climb in some places. We really made some record time (for us), getting to the "saddle" before 10:00! A short time before the saddle is where the trail starts to get a little difficult.
At the "saddle" with Utah Lake in the background
Here's a look at the trail ahead of us from where we're standing at the saddle. If you look really close, you can see a dot at the top of the mountain - it's a tiny shack on the summit.
Shack is on the far right/top of mountain
Justin had been leading the way the entire hike, shortly after leaving the saddle, we decided to have me go in front for a little while - NOT a good idea! At this point on the mountain, in many places there's not much of a trail. I missed where the "trail" veered off and continued straight until I realized I was NOT on any kind of trail and the ground beneath me was giving way right and left. I was too far to try and go back to the "trail", and I knew if I freaked out, I'd definitely not make it, so I tried to keep my cool and go upwards.
You can't see very well, but there wasn't much to grab onto, and I was climbing on loose sand and rocks.
If you look close you can see me towards the left of the picture with a fairly steep drop beneath me and the sand falling from under my shoes. PRETTY SCARY! Justin was a little ways behind me, so after snapping a couple of pictures for posterity, he went back and traveled the trail to come out above, encourage me, and give me a hand. I think he led the entire rest of the hike!
As we headed up the more difficult part of the hike towards the summit, this next picture was in Justin's view:
We reached the summit just before 11:00 - pretty good timing!
A nice couple had brought a sign up with them that said Mount Timpanogos, 11,749 feet, August 29, 2008. They were sharing their sign, so we'd thought we'd get a pic with it too.
We made it!
Mount Timpanogos - 11,749 feet
There's not a whole lot of room up at the summit, and there were 8-10 people up there with us. We took some pictures, rested, ate some lunch, and of course signed the log book in the shack as evidence that we were there!
Some people wonder why I wanted to do this hike again. Several reasons: there's a real sense of accomplishment finish something of this magnitude - I guess you could say a natural high. I love spending one on one time with my children doing something we both enjoy, great memories together. The magnificent views from the summit can't be experienced anywhere but.... at the top:
The pictures don't do justice. You'll just have to come do the hike and see for yourself! After about an hour, we started back down the mountain. I thought the hike down would go much quicker. Guess I wasn't figuring in how tired and sore we would be towards the end. It took us almost as much time to get down as it did to get up! And we were definitely sore, especially our feet! But not too sore to have thoroughly enjoyed the entire day. We had perfect weather, perfect company, perfect scenery. Thanks, Justin, for spending your day with me. It was awesome!
Mother/Son Mount Timp Hike - August 29, 2008