Climbing Mt. Baldy
No, not the real Baldy in California, just the small version that sits below Mt Timpanogos here in Utah County.
Tim (my brother in law) has climbed it before and he wanted to do it again with Todd before Todd left on his mission.
Hopefully I’ll have a gps trail map of our hike so others can do it if they want to, however I doubt they will after I write what I’m about to write.
The climb was absolutely horrible. TERRIBLE. Outrageous. RIDICULOUS.
I would never do it again. Here’s why:
We started on the normal trail which at some point goes around the back of Baldy and comes up to the top. However, about 1 mile into the trail there is now a nice looking wooden sign that says “Mt. Baldy Trail. Summit 8557 ft.” So we took it.
It turns out that this “Mt. Baldy Trail” isn’t actually the real trail. It’s some idiot scouts idea of an eagle project. Instead of making a trail that makes sense, they made a trail that went straight up the side of the mountain. No switchbacks, no looking for an easier way to get there. They just went straight up the side of the mountain. The trail was so stupid in fact that about 1/4 of the way up, they basically just stopped making the trail. They stopped sawing down branches and bushes to make the trail walkable, they stopped tying pink ribbons onto the bushes to mark the trail, they stopped making rest areas. Basically, they just stopped.
Just to get an idea of how difficult the trail was, it took us 2 hours. It was 1.2 miles. It was 3,500 feet up. That’s right, 1.2 miles long, 3,500 feet up. That’s 6.66 inches up for every 12 inches over. That’s basically like climbing 3,500 stairs without being able to stop.
The trail was so difficult that as we neared the top I could tell I was starting to break down. I could tell my body was getting to the point where it can’t control itself anymore. I was getting delerious. If there had been a single spot where I could have possibly slept I would have given up and slept. The problem was there was never a spot that was even remotely close to being sleepable.
When we got to the top the view was spectacular, but it was already dark when we got there so we didn’t really get to see the sunset. I didn’t care.
Just to keep stuff interesting, we decided not to go down the way we had come. The trail had been that awful. We decided to try to find the real trail on the back side of the mountain. Well, we never found it. We ended up hiking back down the mountain through the brush and low hanging trees. We literally followed where there wasn’t a trail and had to duck below the trees and step on top of the waist high bushes to push them down so we could get through. While we all ended up with lots of scrapes and cuts from walking through the bushes and trees, I’m almost positive it was a better experience than it would have been had we walked back down the stupid trail we came up.
Stupid scout. We should revoke his eagle.