Mt. Nebo P5K
Middle Peak
South Peak

Tue, Aug 16, 2022
Etymology
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Continued...

Mt. Nebo is a popular P5K in Central Utah, east of I-15 between Nephi and Payson. I had attempted it the previous afternoon, but got rained off after reaching North Peak. Today I got an early start, well before the thunderstorms could develop and had no issues. There is a decent trail all the way to Wolf Pass, the lowpoint between North Peak and Mt. Nebo, after that it becomes threaded and less well-defined. I spent the first hour+ replaying the portion of trail I had climbed the previous day, then followed the trail as it traverses the west side of North Peak, reaching Wolf Pass after an hour and a half. So far so good. A couple of guys ahead of me were taking a break at the pass. A short while later, they wandered down the west side of the pass, evidently not heading to Nebo or any summits. I'm guessing they were scouting for hunting season soon to be upon us. Beyond the pass, I used the lesser trails climbing up the NE Ridge. A pair of mountain goats were grazing high on the rocky slope, eyeing me warily. Shortly before topping out on a false summit, I got suckered by goat trails into traversing the east side of the false summit. The goat trail gave out and I was stuck sidehilling on unpleasant terrain - better to follow the ridge more directly. I eventually regained the ridge and stayed truer to it in reaching Mt. Nebo's summit at the two and a half hour mark.

I spent some time at the summit taking in the views and answering a handful of texts that had come in during the ascent. The weather was still quite good, so I decided to continue traversing the ridgeline south the extra mile to Middle Peak and South Peak. Use/goat trails continued to the other summits, though not continuously. A mix of class 1 & 2, with a short bit of class 3 where I didn't see an easier away across a cruxy section between Middle and South Peaks. I reached South Peak an hour after leaving Mt. Nebo, finding a register of recent origin - the traverse across the range appears to be fairly popular.

On over Mt. Nebo, I startled a trio of goats at close range that included a youngster, causing them to run off the west side in a hurry. On my way back down to Wolf Pass, a solo hiker was on her way up. She asked how far it was to Mt. Nebo, having originally planned to only do North Peak. I gave her an encouraging answer, so she thanked me and continued up. I saw one other person on the trail north of North Peak. Like me the previous day, he was getting a late start, but the weather was looking more cooperative today - clouds were developing, but so far they were far from threatening. It was after 1:30p by the time I returned to the TH - about 6:45hr for 10mi and 4,600ft of gain. Another speed record left unbroken, but a very enjoyable outing.

I was too tired to consider more bonus peaks, so I drove back out of the mountains and spent the afternoon chilling at a Starbucks in Provo. Later that afternoon, with plans to climb Mt. Timpanogos the next day, I drove up the American Fork Canyon back into the Wasatch Range and found a most excellent campsite on the northern edge of the Timpanogos Wilderness, one of the better ones I found on this trip.

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