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September 12, 2009

2

My First Mountain

by Dan

I live along the Wasatch Front which is surrounded by beautiful mountains. Not quite as pretty as the Tetons in Wyoming perhaps, but I’ve always wanted to climb the nearby Mount Timanogos.

Of course, I thought I’d start with one of the smaller mountains closer to Spanish Fork and work up to the 12.4 mile round trip hike up Timpanogos. But when my employer Mozy sponsored a company hike, I decided I’d jump on the bandwagon. About 20 people took the hike that day, including two who got to the top (the vertical elevation gain is almost a mile at 4,652 feet) in less than two hours.

Copyright (c) Eric Ward. Used by Permission.

I started out keeping up with those guys. I’m sure that the embarrassment of having a newcomer like myself tagging along is what caused them to pull ahead after about 10 minutes. Yeah, that was it.

We hit the trail at 6:17am. In my rush to keep up at first, I didn’t notice much of the scenery. But it’s a gorgeous hike.

Starting the hike

Pheasant overlooking a valley

One of the waterfalls crossing the trail

The trail consists of the following:

  1. Steep climb
  2. Bushy semi-flat walk
  3. Steep climb
  4. Meadowy semi-flat walk
  5. Really steep climb

This is the view of the top (on the right) from the second meadow area. Well, I thought it was the top. It turns out that you can’t actually see the peak from here. It’s a higher point behind the peak on the right. There’s nothing quite like thinking you’re at the top only to to realize you aren’t.

The peak from the second meadow

From the meadow, you go up this trail to the saddle where you can see Utah Valley for the first time.

Trail up to the saddle from below

This is what the trail up to the saddle looks like from the peak. The saddle is just above and to the left of center.

Trail up to the saddle from above

View from the saddle

The climb from the saddle to the peak was, by far, the most exhilarating part of the hike. Slower going and entirely rock, but with victory close at hand.

Trail from saddle to peak

Reaching the top was awesome. I got there in 3 hours 23 minutes.

Me on the very top

Five of us summitted fairly close together. Mark (back left) took much better pictures with the nice camera he lugged the whole way up.

Mark, Jamie, me, Derek and Corey

After getting down, I found out that Mount Nebo is actually the tallest peak in the Wasatch Front (and Utah County). Since Nebo is about as far south of me as Timpanogos is north, I guess it’s next on my list. Just need to get rid of this limp first.

2 Comments
  1. baldeagle
    Sep 12 2009

    Cool pictures and commentary. I’ll bet there is no oxygen up there!

  2. Sep 13 2009

    I didn’t seem to notice much of a difference but maybe that’s why I slowed down so much going up that last trail. :)

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