The Beatout – one of the quintessential hikes (runs?) of the Wasatch. Found at the back of John Veranth’s Hiking the Wasatch, the route largely follows the rim of Hogum Fork in the heart of the Lone Peak Wilderness. This is one of the prime cuts of the Wasatch – one that I’ve avoided for several years in search of somewhat more obscure routes. But it still holds some deep roots for me with the twenty years of intermittent crossings. There have been many memorable crossings including my first trip in 1996 (11 hours!) and at least one ‘bachelor party’ atop South Thunder Mountain for the star of Escape to Stunt City.
Having spent much of this summer chasing summits and accruing vertical in preparation for an upcoming race I thought I’d have a go at my old Beatout PR from 2009. I thought for sure I could beat my old time with better training, increased wisdom(?), and perhaps a little forgetfulness. I also thought the trick might be pairing with someone faster than me – hoping to push myself in a chase instead of waiting patiently for others. Jed is the fastest runner I know and luckily he was game for Beatout push.
While my ambitions and plans were just, the PR was naively just out of sight. Times have changed since 2009 and my memories a bit flawed. I was 15 minutes slower on my usual Pfeifferhorn split. And 25 slower on my South Thunder split. And we enjoyed both summits (in time) more than past. Of note – we gained a solid 20 minutes on the Bells Canyon descent over past times. Not sure what to make of that. But overall we were pretty much exactly 10% slower overall from my 2009 time. Honestly, not bad given eight years. Difference noted.
Knowing Jed and his speed, he would have dropped some significant time if he was solo. But I was honored to get out with him and share a slice of this incredible [urban] wilderness. Until next time Beatout.
Jed climbing South Thunder with Lightning Ridge beyond.