Chris’s friend Craig came to visit for the weekend and wanted to do some backpacking and camping, so Chris asked some friends for some recommendations on hikes or trips. A friend of his recommended the Timpanogos Summit hike as a “pretty easy hike”. Basically a hike from 7,350 to 11,749 feet throughout a 7 mile trip. It can be done as long day hike (out and back) or as an overnight. We decided to pack our bags and stay overnight and call it a backpacking trip.
Mount Timpanogos is the second highest mountain in the Wasatch range (where I live) and one of the most popular peaks to summit in the Rocky Mountain range. More info here if you’d like to know more. We used the Aspen Grove trailhead, which is mentioned.
We headed out on Friday at about 4:30pm after packing up and stopping at the grocery store for some snacks and meals. We had plans to camp near Emerald Lake, which was about 2/3 the way up to the summit. After a lot of adjustment of my pack, which still did not fit well, we headed up the trail. In less than a mile, I had a blister and was extremely crabby and ready to turn around. I had a blister on my heel from Craig’s grueling pace and a pack that still wasn’t fit correctly. I stopped and got things more situated and continued on, wondering if backpacking was really my thing and cursing because within a hour into our trip, I had a blister. Things slowly improved- the scenery got more beautiful, and we made more progress on our trip up, which we were decided for ourselves was NOT easy, like we had been told. We took many breaks on our way up to get up enough energy to move on.
Chris and I by the waterfall. The fact that I’m actually smiling means I’ve decided that this isn’t too bad afterall, and I’m going to continue on and not ask Chris for the keys to his car to drive myself home.
Camping Friday night was cold. I think it got down to around 40 degrees? Good thing I had a warm sleeping bag and tent. I was pretty cold before I went to bed, but once I got in the tent, not too bad. When we woke up this morning, we saw these goats right out the tent- you can see the corner of the tent in the photo- they were right there!
Today was the day to leave our backpacks and gear behind and head for the summit- another 2ish miles. We stopped at this snow/glacier fed lake to fill up with water. I won’t mention how this process was done, unless Chris and I are sick next week. Chris and I are not worried about it, so you shouldn’t be either.
We found snow! I love snow so much that I ate some!
Here’s Chris and Craig. Unfortunately, this is where we left Craig behind. He got a little altitude sickness and had a headache and decided that going higher up was not a good idea.
We came to an area called “the saddle” which is similar to a U shape- like a valley in between the ridge of the mountain. We were originally going to stop here, but I convinced Chris to go on. For me, it was like running a marathon and stopping at mile 25 and saying, “Oh, that’s enough”. I just can’t do that, so we went to the top.
This little hut is on the top of the mountain. It has a lot of graffiti on it (so sad) and this stupid BYU art on it. Timpanogos is near BYU and a lot of BYU students climb it, which we realized as we passed many people wearing BYU shirts and were asked “if we were members of the (LDS) church.” One guy saw Chris’s Minnesota shirt and assumed he moved from MN to go to BYU- no way!
Craig let me use his trekking poles for most of the trip up and all the trip down. I think I’ll be adding these to my birthday list. They make backpacking more enjoyable for me. On this trip, I decided I’m not super crazy about carrying all this stuff- I find myself just hating my pack and the fact I have to carry it. If I use trekking poles, it takes my mind off my pack and helps me to enjoy the trip more. These things are key!
I was very happy to see the parking lot and take off my hiking boots to find this blister that started as the size of a pea and ended about the size of a quarter. Stupid boots, or socks, or pace, or pack.. something was not right.