Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hiking to the top of Old Tom

Sometimes my Dad gets crazy ideas. They vary in the quality and quantity of crazy. Last year he ran a marathon. I rank this as super crazy. A few weeks ago he asked if I wanted to hike to the top of Old Tom with him. This wasn't all that crazy and I thought it would be a nice summer adventure.

It started off not so much as an adventure, but as a really confusing drive along the side of the mountain. We had no idea where we were going and it showed. Luckily we ran into a farmer who told us how to reach the bottom of the trail-kind of-we weren't really sure what he said, but we figured it out. He said we could drive up the mountatin pretty far and that would make the hike easier. That would have been true if I didn't drive a Honda Fit. (Note to self: buy a giant truck one day, after a cheap gas alternative is invented) When your car is six inches off the ground it makes rocks, holes and giant puddles seem like a bigger obstacle than they should be. I eventually had to pullover and park because I thought we were going to drown.

That was when the hiking began. At first it was a normal hike up a mountain road. Then we hit the real trail.

There were no switchbacks, the trail just went straight up the mountain. It's a very exhausting way to go. We had to rest frequently on the way up, which I think made us feel embarrassed and sissy-like because many comments like, "I swear I go to the gym, I'm not that out of shape." were frequently said.

However, the exhausting climb was worth it when we reached the top and got an amazing view of several cities and valleys.

Arimo, Robin and Downey


The American Falls Resevoir

The marker placed by the US Geological Survey, proving that we actually reached the top. These are useful because there were several times we thought we had reached to top only to notice another portion of the mountain was higher

In a pile of rocks at the summit, there was an old book wrapped in plastic in which visitors had written messages. It dated back to the 1940's and had a lot of interesting things in it.