Timpanogos East Ridge
Ascending Mt. Timpanogos for the first time in winter was such a memorable and beautiful experience I thought I'd share. Its a must do for any Utah adventurer. It all started with a 3:30am alarm. For a 9-5er ski patrolman that is a pretty hard pill to swallow but a worth while one. I threw down some coffee/breakie and ran out the door to meet the posse. Its 4:30am now and dubstep and talk of beer drinking has already started. Its funny thats what we look forward to before we even begin. We drove to Aspen Grove parking lot donned the head lamps and geared up. Into the darkness, the blind leading the blind. It started as a lovely skin over a very lumpy track of frozen left over post holes and snowshoe tracks from the day before. And when the track got smooth it went up, steeply up. Before long we had skis on our packs and began booting. Then it happened. After two hours of pushing upward the light began to trickle in, and the colors; the purples, the pinks, the blues- a sunrise I will not soon forget. One that requires strong heart, lungs, legs, and sleep deprivation to witness. Again. Worth it. Once we gained the first saddle we were able to skin again and was smooth sailing for awhile. Just strolling along and admiring the sun slowly creep up the rock walls around us. It would take us another two hours to finally reach our line: The East Ridge. We had ascended over 5,000 feet and had stunning 360 degree views. We had some lunch and basked in the sun before dropping on our line. We timed it perfectly, roughly 10:30am and the corn was perfect. We schussed the loud powder down the ridge to the basin where we stopped for a celebratory beer and revelry before embarking on our heinous exit. The exit consisted of sticky mash potato snow, crossing avalanche debris, hiking through mud, getting lost amongst multimillion dollar estates, and finally hitchhiking in the back of a pick up truck the rest of the way to the car. Where we proceeded to people watch and get drunk in the parking lot. In reflection its funny that the turns were such a small part of the day. Its more about the unknown, pushing your body, your skills, the camaraderie, and the après.