Looking back on a great year.2012 was an eventful year full of great peaks and great goals. At the beginning of the year I had two main goals.
1. Climb a 10,000 ft. peak in Jan.-March and October to be able to say that I have been over 10k in every month of the year.
2. Climb my first 13er.
As the year went on and I started racking up 10k+ peaks I formed a third goal.
3. Get over 10K in every month of the year consecutively.
Fortunately I was able to accomplish each one of these goals. The following is a pictorial overview of the year's activities with brief explanations.
King Mountain, ID-10,612 ft.
Not much snow on this trip made for a relatively easy winter ascent of King Mountain and some memorable times with my Dad. The real adventure was getting a flat tire on the way home in the middle of nowhere and lacking the one tool needed to get the spare off.
Vickory Mountain, UT-10,330 ft.
Long day on snowshoes with Victor (Castlereagh) (11 miles or so). Great intro to the Stansbury Range!
Scott Hill, UT-10,116 ft.
Squeaked this one in on the last day of March and was home by 9 AM. Also with Victor. I did Scott Hill again in September.
No peak but an awesome road trip with my Dad and Grandpa.
Spruce Mountain, NV-10,262 ft.
Another great day with Victor, complete with whiteout conditions, snow thunder, and an interesting ghost town.
Peaks 10,027, 9,794, and McDonald Peak 10,068 ft., ID
I participated in the annual Idahosummits Spring Outing in the Sawtooths. We had 14 people and a great time! The objective was the obscure Peak 10,027 but me and a few others tacked on nearby McDonald and 9794 to make it a 3 peak day. Plenty of snow left but it was hard enough that snowshoes were not needed all day.
Oxford Peak, ID-9,300 ft.
On Memorial Day I decided to do this very prominent peak while I was at home visiting. I grew up in the valley to the east and saw it everyday of my life but had never climbed it until now. I went up the northeast ridge and trudged through 6-8 inches of fresh snow. This was the lowest peak I climbed all year but one of the most prominent.
June was a big month with 6 peaks in 2 outings.
Deseret Peak 11,031, South Willow 10,685, North Willow 10,521, UT
Clayton Peak 10,721, Peaks 10,420, and 10,026, UT
I had another day to get out this month but had to be home in the early afternoon. Fortunately it's easy to get into the Wasatch from SLC so I still got a 3 peak day in the Guardsman pass area. I repeated two of the peaks in December.
Another big month with multiple peaks. All year I had planned to do Kings peak and some other 13ers but it didn't work out. other stuff did though.
Mt. Nebo 11,928, North Peak 11,174, UT
I had 4 days in a row to bag peaks and was originally going to to Kings Peak but those plans fell through so I did a tour of Utah and Idaho. Nebo and North were first and I did them solo. Then it was off to Idaho!
Fourth of July Peak 10,713, Grays Peak 10,563, ID
After tossing around 4 or 5 ideas Mike (mfox79) and I decided to head for Central Idaho. The original plan for this outing was to do Castle but it didn't work out. The plan then changed to Thompson but that didn't work out either. We settled on Fourth of July on the hike out from Castle and Grays Peak in the Pioneers the next day. It was still a fun trip though.
Hayden Peak, UT-12,479 ft.
I originally thought that the above trip would be my last for July but I had the 24th off from work (Pioneer Day in Utah). I teamed up again with Victor and we headed into the Uintas. Hayden was one of the most fun peaks I've done and was a real challenge.
Wheeler Peak 13,063, Jeff Davis 12,771, Bald Mountain 11,562, NV
I have always wanted to check out Great Basin National Park and I got the chance in August. I teamed up with Mike again and we made the long drive out to the Park. We arrived just in time to claim the last open campsite at the upper campground. We also arrived just in time to get pelted by a heavy mountain thunderstorm. That soon passed and the rest of the evening was very pleasant. The next day we were up early and bagged 3 peaks, including Wheeler. We made it off the last one just in time to avoid and afternoon thunderstorm. It was a great trip and nice to bag my first 13er!
Scott Hill, UT-10,116 ft.
I didn't have a whole lot of free time in September due to school and work, but I managed to get out and hit Scott Hill again so that I could make my goal of getting over 10K each month consecutively.
Master LNT Course at Philmont Scout Ranch, NM
I was invited to attend this course and serve as a Master educator for my local Boy Scout Council. I couldn't turn down the opportunity to go to Philmont! This was my second time there and I had a great time in the Sangre de Cristo backcountry. I didn't get any peaks but the trip was well worth it.
Bald Mountain, UT-11,943 ft.
October was one of the months I had to fill in to reach my first goal and at first it looked like i was going to be too busy for it to happen. However, I found a loophole-my scout troop wanted to hike up a mountain and who was I as their Scoutmaster to refuse them? I obliged and took them up Bald Mountain in the Uintas. It was a repeat for me and an enjoyable experience for them.
Mount Watson, UT-11,521 ft.
November started out dry and warm and I took advantage of that fact to get into the high Uintas one last time. Mt. Watson was easily accessible and doable in a day. The day was clear and cool and the hike was pleasant. many of the upper lakes around the peak were frozen even though there was very little snow on the ground. I made it in the nick of time though because a few days later the Uintas got about 4 feet of snow in one storm.
Guardsman Pass Repeats
Short on time again in December I headed to Guardsman Pass to do 10,026 and 10,420. I decided to leave out Clayton. It turned out to be a great day for snowshoeing up the peaks. The snow was great and the weather was good. It was nice to know that I had finally achieved my goal!
Final StatsTotal Peaks: 26
Highest Peak: Wheeler Peak 13,063'
Lowest Peak: Oxford Peak 9,282' (Only sub-10k peak of the year!)
Ultra Prominence Peaks: 3- Deseret, Nebo, Wheeler.
Idaho Peaks: 6
Utah Peaks: 16
Nevada Peaks: 4
LoJ 2012 Summary:Lists of John Summary for 2012
Average Elevation: 10,871.44'
Average prominence: 1,633'
Total Prominence: 42,452'
Final Word2012 was a great year for peak bagging, but sadly my Grandfather passed away in October. Fortunately we were able to go on one last great trip with each other in March.
My Grandpa loved the outdoors and the mountains of Idaho especially. I grew up camping with him and learning about the places he had been in his lifetime. Much of my love for the mountains comes from him and the experiences I had with him.
Just like he always did in life, he's gone on to check out the trail ahead and make sure it's safe for everyone behind.
Thanks for everything Grandpa!