Friday, October 8, 2010

Hiking Mt. Nebo

The Story (Pictures below)
Okay, Wendy said that I (Tracy) had to make this post on the blog. I rarely make the posts, but I suppose it is fitting. When I was at BYU I really had this desire to climb to the top of Mt. Nebo just south of Provo. Perhaps for kind of silly reasons, but I did. First, Nebo is actually the highest mountain in the Wasatch although many think that the more hiked and popular Mt. Timpanogos is the highest. So I wanted to climb the highest peak. Also, when I was at the BYU Jerusalem Center we went to the original Mt. Nebo in the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt. This is the "traditional" site that some say Moses may have climbed to get the 10 commandments. That Mt Nebo is a real tourist thing, the whole student body and faculty ascended the mountain either on foot or on camel through the night to watch the sunrise on top. It is pretty common if you travel there. I rode the camel which was worth whatever it cost, because you can enjoy the ride, focus on the stars and not your feet, and you can say you've ridden a camel. Plus you not down in the trenches fighting the camels, their walking guides, and the smattering of angry European hi-tech hiking tourist that swear at you in other languages when your camel almost knocks them down. So anyway, I wanted to hike Nebo in Utah for sort of sentimental connection to the other Nebo experience. At BYU I tried to hike it once with some friends in my ward, but a sort of quirky kid we did not know that well kind of invited himself on the trip and turned out to not be up for or into the hike. Thus, we were unable to complete the hike. That was my last chance to try to hike it before graduation, getting married, moving to grad school etc. I was always disappointed that I did not get to the top. I always said if I went back to visit family in Utah etc I would find a way to make time to go hike it someday. Well, turns out we moved back to Utah after Georgia Tech so I was determined to not miss out again. We kept having conflicts on weekends and the summer was running out. But finally I forced Wendy to drive down late with me on a Friday after the High Priest social at Church I had to plan. We stayed at Wendy's sister in Spanish Fork, woke up early and hit the trailhead by 8AM. It was a great, clear day for hiking. The valley temp was a high of 85F but it was very breezy on the mountain and probably much cooler up there. I could have maybe preferred pants just for the wind and the sharp rocks at the top.

It was a beast of a hike. I would have done much better at BYU 8 years ago. But I still made it and so did Wendy. It was tiring, but beautiful. I was so exhausted before the peak and also the whole way down. But I am glad I did it. Thank you Wendy for coming with me to fulfill my Nebo dream.

Enough of the boring blog talk. Now for pretty pics.

At the relative beginning of the hike. Still feeling okay so far I think.

Air is getting thinner, scenes much wider, and apparently my face is getting fatter (but the fat face may have started well before we started the hike).

This trail does not mess around much. Pretty much heading upwards the whole time.
Last bite of much awaited lunch on the peak.
West View from peak. That is Mona, UT we think.
East view from the peak (Uinta National Forest land I think).

The walking and scrambling on loose rocks was getting a little old by the peak. This is right on top.
Once you're on the ridge, the trail (sort of a trail) just follows right on the ridge line.
Wendy was a trooper and moving faster than me especially on the way back down. I did carry most of our water and a lot of it. I'm using that excuse.
Looking back on the way back down. We were on the second peak. When you're going up the first time we did not really know where it would go and did not really remember the second peak. When you climb that first steep incline (straight up basically) it is quite disappointing to get to the top and realize there is a whole other peak that was unseen for most of the steep ascent. It was tempting to call it good there. I am glad we stuck out it to the top.

Wendy playing with the color capture feature on our camera. The leaves were turning yellow but this is enhanced.

Finally, after several little rise and falls we could finally see the car. We were so ready for it. I did not know Wendy left on the yellow effect when I took this picture.

Now to maybe climb some other peaks in the Wasatch (next year?).


brenna said...

Yeah! I'm glad you made it! I forget how funny you are, Tracy--I'll definitely pay for the camel ride if I ever go to the original Mt. Nebo.

Tara and Orlando said...

Wow, way to go you two! Very impressed!

Annie Gedge said...

Awesome. I am so impressed; I am a little at lost for words. I know that I would be weezying up the mountain (if I even made it that far up)

Jenelle said...

Dude. And here you are hiking pregnant! Doubly impressive, my friend.