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Hiking Log - 20110701

Happy 1st of July!

I started the day (after cleaning out the chicken coop and doing some weeding before the garbage truck came) by hiking to Mollies Nipple (ain't that a great name?) found at 40.004122, -111.721318. I left home about 8:30, got to the summit at 11:05 and was back down at 12:10. I so wanted to go further, but my water and my legs were being rationed, and I had to save some for the return journey.

The ladies look all grown up, but they're still chicken (badum-tish!). I left the coop open all day, but they still haven't ventured out.

It took me a while to find the trailhead for the trek up. Had to go to the US Forest Service office in Spanish Fork for a map of hiking trails... even though this route is not shown, it did show me where the public land access was from the North, and from there I was able to figure out how to get into the mountains.

I wasn't sure of the area, so I hoofed it up this hill to start:

As it turns out, there is an actual path just a bit to the left, but I didn't find it until I came down. Now I know the best way to get up for next time.

One of the things I love best about hiking in the Utah mountains is finding the wildflowers.

Today's route took me above where I had been bushwhacking last week. The hike is pretty strenuous, but once I had gotten high enough to find the trail (of sorts), the going was a lot easier than last week's trek.

Halfway up, I took a telephoto shot of the lot of ground where the Payson, Utah LDS temple will be built. We expect and hope for the announcement of the groundbreaking date soon.

My first waystation was just above where I took last week's panorama from. There was an interesting little cairn there - I looked around in passing for a Geocache, just in case there might have been one there, but didn't take the time to make a thorough search.

Payson as seen from 1760 meters

Looking upward, this I saw my next goal in sight:

Mollies Nipple with the North end of Dry Mountain in the background

Slogged onward - fortunately, the trail was pretty easy to spot although it peters out in some places where there is an open area. The last huff up to the summit was pretty intense, but I had a goal in mind and wasn't going back until I had reached my destination.

The summmit of Mollies Nipple, looking East toward Elk Ridge.

What a view from up there. To the West you can see from Santaquin clear up to Point of the Mountain, north of Alpine, and to the East, Elk Ridge, Woodland Hills and Salem can be seen, with Spanish Fork further North. I enjoyed the view, rested on the cairn, ate a 10X Blast fruit bar, and wandered a bit farther South to see what was awaiting me. To get to the next peak will require going down a bit and bushwhacking up the side - there doesn't seem to be a clear path all the way until the top of the next peak. Once I can get to that point, it's about 2.5 miles to the summit of Dry Mountain, pretty much following the ridge of the mountain all the way.

I can tell that this will be pretty much an all-day venture, and I'll have to start earlier if I don't want to sleep on the mountain. And, I want to get some more strength back in my legs before I try for the top. But I can see that it's doable.

It was time to head down, and coming back I was able to find the actual trailhead right behind a water tank, so it should be pretty easy to find next time.

Wild Foxglove on the way down.

It was a good morning. I felt pretty wiped out, but after some lunch and a bit of a rest, I felt ready for my next project. I love hiking the mountains, it's so beautiful up there. I wish my companion could come with me, but there are some logistical issues that rule that out, at least for now. Someday.

An overview of the terrain. A larger version is here.

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Jul. 2nd, 2011 06:35 pm (UTC)
Sheesh, how many mountains have pervy names anyway?

Chickens and you didn't eat 'em? You must be waiting for eggs.
Jul. 2nd, 2011 11:58 pm (UTC)
There's Grandpa's Knob in Vermont - site of an early wind power experiment (Power From The Wind, Smith-Putnam)


The Old Wolf

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