My friend Tony dropped in unexpectedly. I had not seen him in years and did not even know that he lived in Utah. Even though it was evening, we (my brother, Tony, and some other friends) decided to hike to the top of Mt. Timpanogos (elevation 11,749 ft). Tony only had a pair of leather dress shoes. None of us had a flashlight that worked. We weren't even exactly sure where the trailhead was because none of us had hiked Timp before. After stopping by a store for some flashlights, we headed up American Fork Canyon in Tony's car. We found the trailhead and started hiking in the dark. After hiking just a short while we realized that we were dead tired and the elevation gain was killing us. My brother had thought to bring a tent and we looked for a place to set it up, but the only place we found was a wide spot in the trail so we pitched the tent there. There were 5 of us and the tent was a 3 man tent, but we made it work. We woke the next morning to the voices of early morning hikers trying to squeeze past our tent, which was doing a pretty good job of blocking the trail (yea, we were idiots). I looked out the door of the tent to see some very puzzled looks on some faces. I retreated back into the tent partly because I was embarassed, but mostly because I was still very tired. A little while later I got up because my brother had a camp fire going so close to the tent that I was choking on the smoke. After two failed attempts to wake Tony, my brother and I set out to hike the mountain (the other guys bailed). Our hike path was probably one that had never been taken. It included some rock climbing and sometimes even crossed the real trail. It was the most direct route that could get us to the top. We even came upon a disemboweled deer that was probably freshly killed by a cougar. When we reached the top of the mountain, it would have felt like a great accomplishment had there not been about 15 young boy scouts and their overweight leaders. Seeing them gave me the feeling that pretty much anyone that isn't in a wheelchair could do this. We then remembered that we had ridden up the canyon with Tony and that there was a good possibility that he could leave without us. We jogged almost the entire way down the mountain and found that Tony had not left us, but was preparing to do so. Even with the lack of preparation, the hike was fun and worth doing.
Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound #370
4 months ago