Mount Timpanogos

Mount Timpanogos rises 11,749 feet above the Wasatch Range.  The trip up to the summit is a hike that anyone passionate about the outdoors should put on their bucket list.  On August 2nd 2010 I went on one of the most memorable outdoor adventures of my life.

Mount Timpanogos in deep slumber during the winter.

There are two commonly used trails that can be taken to reach the top of Mt Timpanogos.  The Aspen Grove Trail which rises up through Primrose Cirque and the Timpooneke Trail.  I took the Aspen Grove route which has a vertical elevation gain of almost 5000 feet from trailhead to summit.  To see an amazing sunrise on the way up I started my hike around 4:30 AM.

A beautiful Wasatch sunrise.

Hiking through Primrose Cirque.

The journey takes you up a very steep trail through Primrose Cirque.  Switchbacks litter this route and be ready for some very heavy work early on throughout the hike.  Primrose is abundant with waterfalls in the spring and the sound of the rushing alpine streams is a welcome companion.  Once you ascend the Cirque the trail levels out for a long period before wrapping around Robert’s Horn and dumping the hiker out at Emerald Lake and the Timpanogos Glacier.

Emerald lake with the Timpanogos Glacier in the background.

After taking in the pure beauty of the lupin and other wildflowers the trail crosses through a large scree field.  It then switchbacks upwards until you gain the final ridge up towards the summit.

Not for the faint of heart.

Once you gain the ridge up towards the top the trail becomes very narrow.  There is one major section at which the trail becomes slightly hard to follow.  Hikers should be comfortable with a fair amount of exposure.  No technical climbing is required but proceed with caution and sure feet as a slip could certainly result in harsh consequences.

On top of the world.

The reward for all of the hard work along the ascent is truly breathtaking.  I will never forget this day and I hope that you are all lucky enough to experience this Wasatch Classic in the future.

Original Photography by Brad Wynalek


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