Welcome to your new Outdoor Adventure Family!
As I take outdoor adventure groups to Europe and hike the Swiss Alps, Mt Timpanogos is the closest thing you’ll ever experience in Utah that looks like the Swiss Alps!
This hike is posted 4 times, once in July, August, September and October. I am organizing it but may not be at this event, however, this is my favorite mountain to hike during the summer months! It takes time and preparation.
For safety reasons and to help you have a great experience, read the following before hiking. The info is based on my own personal experiences so take it for what it's worth.
7:00 AM to 5:00 PM
This is a free event!I'll be there!
Most important: Get acquainted with Timpanogos and see why we LOVE hiking this mountain so much! (http://www.summitpost.org/mt-timpanogos-ut/151365)
Learn more about Aspen Grove trail, which is another trail that will take you to the top. (http://www.summitpost.org/the-most-popular-trail-route/14887)
We will NOT meet at our regular 6200 South meeting place. I hope to have people connect in advance and carpool to the trailhead OR drive to the trailhead on their own.
Regardless of how far you hike, if possible, send me some photos so I can post them on my website (or you may post them on my meetup site) so we can all live vicariously through you! Photos will help us see how colorful the wild flowers are, etc. Everywhere on this mountain is so beautiful you can't go wrong no matter where you are.
7 AM: Meet at the Timpooneke Trailhead and look for the others. If you hike with us in advance you’ll meet others who may be hiking this trail with you.
7:10 AM: Start hiking - if you plan to go to the summit - give yourself all day.
Bathroom facilities are at the parking lot and trailhead.
Getting to the trailhead: Google maps is helpful. Continue past the Timpooneke Campground a few hundred feet to the Timpooneke Trailhead parking lot.
See the suggested TIMELINE below.
Here are my personal tips for safety and fun!
The goal is to walk away with an incredible, happy memory of what I call “Timp”!
It may require several hikes before reaching the upper meadow, the saddle or summit.
1) If you want to have a great experience, follow my TIMELINE below.
2) Stop as often as needed to catch your breath and drink water.
3) If you can't reach the landmarks by the suggested TIMELINE below, turn around and head back down the mountain. This mountain will be here waiting for you when you return. It's not smart to spend the whole day trying to get to the top only to realize that you have a very short amount of time to get off the mountain before dark.
4) Be responsible for yourself and only hike as far as you feel comfortable.
5) What goes up must come down. Make sure you leave yourself plenty of strength AND time to descend.
6) Don’t let anyone talk you into hiking further or faster than you are able.
7) Know your own medical and health conditions and act accordingly.
8) If you are new to hiking, ease into this sport as you would any other. Go slow, stop often, drink water and hike just a few miles before turning around. This is a great trail for a beginner hiker to start getting familiar with the mountain.
9) Don't forget your camera!
10) Hydrate your body by drinking plenty of water the day BEFORE the hike.
11) Drinking 1 liter per mile is recommended.
12) Hiking Timpanogos makes you more thirsty than hungry. That’s my experience. Bring lots of water, a sandwich and some snacks i.e. peanuts, granola bar, etc. Eating your favorite candy makes the steeper parts of the mountain seem a lot easier since most of this hike is a mental game. (It worked for me anyway!)
13) Turn your cell phone off OR put it on Airplane mode when you enter American Fork Canyon to save energy. Once you are on the hike or especially at the upper meadow, Emerald Lake, saddle or peak area you will have reception. I've made the mistake of keeping it on and draining my battery - just when I wanted a photo!
14) Bring your annual national park pass if you have one. Fee station is not open at 7 AM. Put your pass on the dashboard before hiking, where it can be seen. If you can’t do this, no worries, you’ll just receive a notice to pay $7/vehicle when you leave the canyon.
15) I recommend starting early to 1) get a parking spot 2) beat the heat for the first part of the hike 3) look for moose on the way up.
16) Avoid hiking this mountain on the weekend if you can possibly help it.
17) If you can work out the logistics do what I did one year: hike up Timpooneke and down Aspen Grove. Just remember this is not where you parked your car so you’ll need to drop a car in advance or try to catch a ride back to the Timpooneke parking lot. Better to plan ahead and drop a second car at Aspen Grove parking lot.
18) Temperatures will change so bring a jacket!
19) Always check the weather before hiking. Conditions may change beyond our control due to weather, road, canyon, or trail conditions.
20) WHAT TO BRING: a minimum of 4 liters of water, good hiking shoes w/ traction, trekking poles help a lot if you are used to them, cell phone, camera, good attitude, hat, jacket, sandwich, hard candy, granola bar, nuts, national park pass if you have one, some gas money to pay your driver if you carpool.
For those who want the easiest option: 1.5 miles to Scout Falls - out & back - 3 miles RT
For those who want the harder options: My four favorite landmarks.
1) The upper meadow (a GREAT accomplishment but the good stuff is still beyond this area)
2) Emerald Lake - One of my favorite places! Take a nap, look for mountain goats, notice the glacier that people slide down on from the summit, it’s all so beautiful and peaceful and has incredible views in every direction!
3) Saddle - Great views but it can get crowded which isn’t much fun. You want this place to yourself if you can.
4) Summit - The big accomplishment for the views and bragging rights. You shouldn’t be here if you are totally spent. What goes up must go down and you still have another 7.5 miles to descend.
FROM THE UPPER MEADOW: Depending on how fast you hike, you are approx. 60 minutes from Emerald Lake OR the Saddle. On one occasion we went to Emerald Lake (14 miles RT) in an hour after reaching the upper meadow. You’re still climbing and you are above 11,000 ft. Plan to stop as needed, catch your breath, take photos, and acclimate to the higher altitude.
Emerald Lake will go to the left and the saddle will go to the right. The signs are clearly posted.
FROM THE SADDLE: Depending on your speed you have approx. 40 - 60 minutes to the summit (15 miles RT), 12,000 ft above sea level will get your attention! You’ll feel it!
NOTE: If you hike to Emerald Lake, the saddle or peak, expect 14 - 15 miles RT with 4000 - 5000 ft. elevation gain. The peak is above 12,000 ft. above sea level.
If you do not arrive at these landmarks on or before these times, I strongly encourage you to go back down the mountain and hike this on another day.
7 AM - Arrive at Timpooneke Trailhead (http://www.utah.com/hike/mt-timpanogos-summit-via-timpooneke-trail) and start hiking. Meet our hikers near the bathrooms. NOTE: If you like you can always start hiking much earlier than this. I suggest not starting any later than this.
11 AM - Arrive at the Upper Meadow - from here you can head to the Saddle OR Emerald Lake
12 Noon - Arrive at Emerald Lake IF this is your destination
1 PM - Head back down Timpooneke or Aspen Grove Trail. NOTE: If you hike down Aspen Grove and you came up Timpooneke you won’t arrive at your car so make plans in advance.
12 Noon - Arrive at Saddle around this time IF you left the Upper Meadow at or before 11 AM. Stop at the saddle for lunch then either continue up to the summit OR hike back down the mountain.
1 PM ish - Arrive at the Summit - this gives you plenty of time to enjoy yourself on top of the world before hiking back down. Incredible views of all Utah County!
Based on these suggested times you should comfortably make it back to the trailhead by or before 5 PM. If anything goes wrong, this will give you extra time to get off the mountain before dark. How long it takes you to hike down will depend on your hiking speed, if you take a short nap or have lunch at Emerald Lake, how long you eat or rest at the saddle or summit, how many photos you stop and take, how many mountain goats you get to know, etc. As you can see there’s a lot to do when you are at or near the top! You really don’t want to come down, it’s that beautiful!!
Equipment or Gear
Let us know if you'll be coming. It isn't necessary, but it helps us to plan.