Blustery Day, Bluebird Day
The first trip to Haystack, on 3/2/08, was a reconaissance of the quickest ways to get to Haystack area. We started from Rock Creek culvert, but quickly turned away from the creek gully, shortcutting towards Pitt and Page Hill. It was blowing hard at higher elevations, and we couldn't even see the slopes of Haystack, let alone more distant mountains. So we sought refuge from North-Westerly winds on the high East benches of Haystack, charting our route to Blue, Azure, Rock, and Shadow Lakes. Not like it wasn't blowing even there! From Shadow Lake, we beelined to Provo River Falls, and returned to the car by the way of MLH. Overall 19 miles, 3000 ft elevation gain.
The following weekend, on 3/9/08, we set out to traverse Haystack South-to-North, and possibly to give Watson a shot. We shaved a bit more distance and elevation from the route by staying clear East of Rock Creek and Pitt & Page, and by noontime we reached the treshold of Haystack's SW Bowl. A new variation of SW Spur route led us to the top, and then by 3:30pm we finally reached the saddle between Haystack and Watson. It was gorgeous bluebird weather, but the snow started to stick in the aftrenoon and slowed us down some. I was relieved when the crew unanimously decided to skip Watson this time ... after climbing Nebo the previous day, and then dancing till midnight, by leg muscles were feeling it! But of course we still had nearly a dozen miles between us and the car, mostly enjoying a near-perfect icy glide on the MLH tracks. Overall 22 miles and 4000 ft el gain.
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