Mount Timpanogos

On May 2, Shaun and Robert (who introduced Shaun to climbing and rappelling nine years ago) climbed the West Face of Timpanogos to a summit south of Bomber Summit. Read about a trip to the summit two weeks later here.

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Robert makes his way up the ridge

The climb ascended 6,100' and took 8 hours, 20 minutes.

Harder snow near cornices made the going easier, but we occassionally sank up to our waists anyway.  

We carried ropes and snow anchors most of the way, but never needed to use them.  Ice picks and soft snow kept the danger of sliding all the way to the bottom minimal.

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Robert takes a breather with Provo/Orem and Mt. Baldy in the background


In the wisest move of the day, Robert and Shaun decide to ditch everything but axes, jackets, and cameras about 1,500 feet from the summit.

Robert had studied the ridge through a telescope from his home, but things change size and shape when you get up close.  Ridges are longer and steeper, but this 30' cliff was about what we expected.


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Shaun checks for loose rocks

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Looking North to Bomber Peak and the North Summit


After many hours of slow climbing, we reach the summit a little after 4:00 and call home to say we'll be late.  Robert's wife Wynlee watches us through their telescope and later meets us a few miles up the trail.

We wait 20 minutes in the cool wind, then head back down.

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Shaun on the summit ridge with Timp in the background

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Shaun runs along a cornice.
Pleasant Grove is almost visible in the top left corner

The trip down was fantastic!  We began placing our feet carefully, digging our heels in good with axes always at the ready.  Soon enough, we realized just how perfect it was and ran along the steep ridges. 

Once we again reached our packs (in less than 15 minutes--what had taken about two hours to climb), we pulled on our snow pants and glisaded the rest of the way down, sending small avalanches and snowballs tumbling along with us.

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Robert gets up some speed


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After a self-arrest, Shaun lets a slow avalanche slide against his back and over a small cliff

As we approached cliff bands or trees, we spun around and dug our ice picks into the snow to stop.

Even a small avalanche like the one on the left is enough to bury and kill you.  Don't take them lightly.

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Hey kids, never run with one of these in your hand

For two weeks, Shaun stared at the mountain constantly, wanting to climb it again.  Then Chris called.  Read about the second trip here.

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