Mt Kessler

With Taylor back in Portland and my parents off to Iceland for a few weeks, I’m left to my own devices here in the Wasatch. Despite a pretty solid schedule of 16 ER shifts including 4 overnights as well as 4┬ádays of lecture, I’ve still been sneaking out into the hills.

That’s the great thing about Salt Lake City. The city itself is not much to write home about– not terrible, but not amazing. I spend my time writing home about the Wasatch, the beautiful and steep range that I can be sweating my way up just half an hour after leaving the hospital. This is why people like me live here.

Looking down the aptly named ski pitch, God’s Lawnmower.

One thing that I’ve been enjoying here is the amazing variety of very steep hills to run. There’s something perversely pleasurable about leaving work, changing clothes in the car, and making your heart explode cruising up steep, blocky, rooted, just-plain-mountainy terrain.

Looking for a quick run after work, I decided to visit Mt Kessler, which I’ve skied past numerous times, and which I found in Jared Campbell’s inspiring list of Wasatch FKTs.

A flattened miner’s cabin, high on Kessler.

By no means gunning for the FKT I set out for a moderate run, trying to beat the rain up this short but steep hill, which packs around 3000′ into 2 miles, and is just about as runnable as it sounds.

A moment of sun on the summit, with ominous clouds.

The summit of Kessler was just a temptation– cresting its top just reveals the long ridgeline extending South along varied terrain all the way to Mt Superior in Little Cottonwood. Maybe someday.

Dorky summit photo.


The tempting ridge beyond Kessler.

I made a try-to-be-gentle-to-the-knees running descent as the sky opened up and dropped the afternoon’s humidity onto the bushes, soaking my shorts before I popped out onto the Mill D South road.

It turns out that I made reasonable time on the climb, about five minutes shy of the FKT. It makes a fella want to go back, but man, a true effort on that steep hill would really hurt deep.

Category: Running


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