Saturday, July 11, 2009

On Top of the World!

Well it wasn't really the top of the world, but it was the top of Salt Lake City!

Yesterday we decided to take on the challenge of hiking to the top of Mount Olympus, the highest peak in the Salt Lake Valley. Here is some information about the hike:

Salt Lake City sits comfortably at about 4,800 ft above sea-level.
The peak of Mount Olympus is 9,000 ft above sea-level.
Difference- 4,200 feet!!

Trail distance: 6.4 miles round-trip

Average hiking time: 6-7 hours

Butler hiking time: 7.5 hours

The hike started off pretty decent with some steep switch-backs, but nothing we couldn't handle. About halfway up the mountain we ran into some other hikers making their way down the mountain. One gentleman said to us, "enjoy this part while you can. It gets a whole lot harder form here on up!" And he wasn't kidding. Not long after, we found ourselves climbing steeper and steeper, grabbing onto rocks, and getting an excellent work-out on our thighs! But ever time we looked up, the peak was getting closer and closer.

After some tough rock scrambling and even getting a little lost, we finally made it to the top!! The view of the valley was incredible. It was hard finding a place to sit down for lunch because the top of the mountain is just a big pile of sharp, jagged rocks. (Well, they aren't called the "sandy" mountains now, are they?!) We finally found a spot and ate our lunch before getting ready for the Return Journey.

We wanted to take a nice picture of us at the very top of Mount Olympus, so we pulled out our camera. I had charged the camera the night before so we could take it on the hike with us, but in the frantic harry to put it in my bag before we left the house, I neglected to make sure that the camera was actually turned off. It had been sitting in my bag and turned on for about 4 hours. Hence, no pictures :(

The hike back was just as hard as the hike up, but we finally made it back to the car and safely home. Now we can look out at the Wasatch Mountain range with our heads held a little higher, knowing that we conquered the highest of them all!

P.S. Thanks to Tiff and Will for inspiring us to take on this challenge!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Take Me Out to the Ball Game!!

We are proud to say that we spent our 4th of July in an all-American way that even Uncle Sam would be proud of! It started off with a neighbor breakfast at our church (and really, can you get any more american than taking advantage of free food?!). It was definitely worth waking up at 8 a.m. for on a Saturday.
After breakfast we headed home and started getting ready for the rest of the adventures we had already planned for that day. We made some lunches, grabbed some blankets and the dog, and headed up the mountains for a beautiful summer picnic. It rained a little on our way up the mountain, but luckily the skies cleared up pretty quick and the rest of the day was perfect. We found our picnic site over-looking the breathtaking Little Dell Reservoir about halfway up Emigration Canyon. Since we had some time to kill, we even drove through different parts of the canyon we'd never seen before, but came out a little disappointed and learned that there was a good reason most of the travelers stay on the main road over-looking the water.

After our picnic we went and saw the movie UP. It is a very fun and very touching movie that we highly recommend to anyone who hasn't seen it yet. We both admit that there were times we felt tears coming to our eyes. It is an emotional story about relationships and friendships, but neither of us expected to get all choked up about it!

After the movie we stopped for some ice cream at Arctic Circle before heading out again to finish the night in the most patriotic way we could think of- BASEBALL!! We went to the Salt Lake Bees game with our friends Tim and Susan and their little girl Sophia. The game was a lot of fun and we had a good time eating our foot-long hotdogs, singing during the 7th inning stretch, and cheering on the Bees! They lost 7-5 in the 12th inning, but it was still a good game with a lot of action. Since we bought the tickets that put us on the grass behind left field, and that was also where they were shooting the fireworks from, they moved everyone in our section down onto the field for the fireworks show. (I think Scott and Tim were more excited about being on the field than about the fireworks).

We had a great 4th and are glad we got to spend it together and with good friends. This was the first 4th of July where one of us wasn't out of town or working and we got to be together all day! We love the country we live in and the freedoms we enjoy.