I am not really sure why, but Mount Timpanogos has a bit of a reputation in Utah. It is like, “the” mountain to climb. Maybe it’s because I am not a local, but it seemed pretty regular to me. I mean it was a beautiful hike and an amazing mountain, but so are all of the peaks I have climbed in the Wasatch Range.
It had a pretty wide range of attractive features, so maybe that is what draws people to this mountain. It is a fairly long approach, about 16 miles round trip. It starts deep in the green of the American Fork canyon. The trees are beautiful. There is a glacial approach year round. The top requires a bit of scrambling, and is fairly exposed. It’s long enough to have an excuse to camp a night on the mountain. I guess I can see why this mountain is such a hit.
Anyways, lets get to the hike. There are a few routes up to the top, we chose to come up from the North side, starting in the American Fork canyon. This route was about 16 miles car to car, and is really pretty.
The hike follows a very readable trail through pretty dense wilderness. It gets a little tricky to follow as you come up into a couple different meadowy basins. There are 2 or 3 on this hike, and if I remember correctly, you just have to keep heading south and stick to the East side of the meadows. You then head West once you reach the South side of each meadow. The trail should present itself when you hit the South side of each meadow.
We reached the large basin just below the saddle up the ridge in the late afternoon and set up camp. We hungout out below the north face of Timpanogos Peak and about a half mile North of the Cabin that was built for climbers in the basin.The next morning we followed the trail heading West toward the saddle. It switch backed up towards a snow bridge that takes you from the East side of the saddle, to the West face of Timp.
As you come over the saddle to the West side, you get your first view of Utah Lake and Happy Valley. The route to the top is pretty clear from here. You dip down on the West face and follow a path carved in the loose rock. You eventually arrive at a a class 3ish looking wall that almost seemed to have switchbacks cut into the rock. This made the scramble more of just a “hike” and soon turned back into the loose rock trail leading the rest of the way up the ridge to the summit.
The top has awesome views of Happy Valley, Utah Lake, Kings Peak, Box Elder Peak, and the glacier that is famous for sledding down year round. There is a small shack on the top made out of what looked like the leftovers of a city bombing painted white and graffitied to oblivion.
The hike down was the same as way up. We hike out the same day we summited and got back to the car by the evening. It was a great backpacking trip where I got to spend quality time with my dad and brother!
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