Monday, August 27, 2012

If you ever take your kids on a hike . . .

 . . . take them to Mount Timpanogos in Utah. We were thoroughly pleased with the hike. Atticus spotted two bull moose at the beginning of the trail. I was freaked out because one year when I worked at Glacier National Park we were required to read up on all the scary wild animals that you might find. Moose were one of them.Well, these two did not want to move out of our way. Of course I made Jonathan do all the dirty work. I just stood way back on the trail with the boys acting scared. What a wimp! Jonathan tried to scare them off with this runner man that just arrived as we were admiring the beautiful creatures. To no avail. We had to push through the brush on our own "new" trail. Hence the new name "The Trailblazers". Just kidding. I'm sticking with the Tumbleweeds.
 Be sure to feed your kids breakfast before you start or you'll get drama. Even from the boys. "I wish I never came on this hike!" Once we got food into him he was wonderful. Bring food. And lots of candy for them.
 Anybody know what kind of scat that is?
 We made pretty good time even though we had to take lots of rests with the little ones. They were quite happy with the view. You can see Utah Lake behind my head. Do you like Sherman's Owen Wilson look?

And to top it all off, I got to see my dream animal. I looked for mountain goats everywhere in Glacier National Park years ago. I think I saw one or two. Well, on this hike, I saw a whole herd of 9. They were really interesting. They don't even look like your typical goat. They actually looked more like polar bears with black horns. I only got to see them from a distance and my picture is unclear. Sorry. Anyway, I was in heaven because of those goats. They are my new best friends. If they would let me join their herd I could trot around on the mountain tops and eat grass and flowers with them and every human would be happy to see me.
  I forgot to mention another animal we saw. Some Peregrine Falcons. I was so excited about it because they were almost extinct in the 70's and since then they have been making a comeback. They are gorgeous birds. Absolutely gorgeous. If you ever get a chance to see one, do. Atticus first learned about them from a bird book he bought. They we got to see a real one that the forest service brought to a service activity. It was full grown but one of it's wings was wounded and it couldn't fly. They can dive at 200 miles per hour. At the summit I could see three of them playing. They weren't very big but they were fast. If they had ribbons connected to their tails they would have woven a wreath around the tip of Mt. Timpanogos they were twirling so much. I would have tried for a picture but all I had was my IPod camera and the battery was almost dead.
  Jonathan carried everyone's backpacks basically the whole way and talked to the kids about whatever they wanted to know.
Atticus- "Dad? Why were the bullets they used during the Civil War so big?"
Jonathan- "Because. . . .(some detailed answer that I can't even recall because the words were too big and it was about guns so I tuned out. They only gun I want to hear about is the beautiful 38 special.)"
Atticus-"Dad? Who started WW1?"
Jonathan-"Well, first Austria-Hungary invaded Serbia, after which Russia, Serbia's ally, invaded Austria-Hungary . . . ta da ta da ta da. . ."
I'm sure glad Jonathan can give them those answers. I'd have to do some research to get them. The whole way down I daydreamed about being a mountain goat, tried to catch those clapping grasshoppers, and talked to the butterflies that were still fluttering around. It was a good day.


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