11 Peaks in 11 Days: Utah Climbing Itinerary

IMG_2268Unfurling Banners to STOP CHILD ABUSE!!!

July 24 – Aug 3, 2019

Over the course of 11 days, 11 peaks and trails will be hiked to raise awareness that our children need protection, especially in religious institutions where so many of our precious little ones have been abused.

Tyler Slack has meticulously lined up the itinerary below.  I thank my friend for the hours of thought and toil required to put this all together.  He plans to join me on many if not all of the hikes.

There is a wide variety of climbs.  From easy to strenuous.  Around the Salt Lake Valley, up to Ogden and down to Utah Valley.  Some start before sunrise.  Some last past sunset.    Pick a peak and join us.

Day 1, Wed July 24:  Mt Timpanogos

Meet-up time:  4:00 am

Meet-up Location:  Timpooneke trailhead, 40.4313, -111.639

Estimated Time:  8-12 hrs (Likely shorter depending on snow pack)

Length: 14.3 miles (4,389 ft. elevation gain) 

Difficulty:  Strenuous

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Trail Information

Notes:   Climb from 7,360 ft to 11,749 feet for a total of 4,389 feet elevation gain. Allowing many extra hours to complete due to anticipated congestion due to the holiday. Possible $6 fee if starting later in the day.  The actual length of the hike may be impacted by snow pack blocking the trail.  For safety reasons, we won’t be going beyond that point.

Day 2, Thu July 25:  Mount Baldy from top of Snowbird Tram (Hidden Peak)

Meet-up time:  11:00 am

Meet-up Location:  9385 Snowbird Center Dr, Sandy, UT 84092

Estimated Time:  2 hrs (4 hrs including tram ride)

Length:  2 miles (240 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Easy

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Trail Information  

Notes:  $18 Tram Ticket (if purchased in advance

Day 3, Fri July 26:  Donut Falls

Meet-up time:  11:00 am

Meet-up Location:  Donut Falls Trailhead (40°38’22.6″N 111°39’04.4″W)

Estimated Time:  2 hrs

Length:  3 miles (531 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Easy

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Trail Information  

Notes:  Depending on how busy it is, parking at the trailhead may not be possible, in which case it’s an extra .5 mile hike from overflow parking near the canyon road.

Day 4, Sat July 27:  Ben Lomond Peak

Meet-up time:  7:00 am

Meet-up Location:  Pioneer Trail, Ogden, UT  (41°19’13.8″N 111°53’55.7″W)

Estimated Time:  7-9 hrs

Length:  14.9 miles (3,618 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Strenuous

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Trail Information 

Day 5, Sun  July 28:  Sunset Hike, Ensign Peak

Meet-up time:  8:00 pm

Meet-up Location:  166 Ensign Vista Dr, Salt Lake City, UT

Estimated Time:  1.5 hrs

Length:  .8 miles (374 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Easy

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Trail Information  

Day 6, Mon July 29:  Night hike, Big Beacon Mt. Wire Trail

Meet-up time:  9:00 pm

Meet-up Location:  Bonneville Shoreline Trail, Salt Lake City, UT (40°45’46.6″N 111°49’23.1″W)

Estimated Time:  3 hrs

Length:  4.7 miles (2,184 ft elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Moderate

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Trail Information  

Notes:  Bring flashlights

Day 7, Tue July 30:  Sugarloaf Peak (Including Cecret Lake)

Meet-up time:  11:00 am

Meet-up Location:  9530 S Campground Rd, Alta, UT 

Estimated Time:  3 hrs

Length:  5 miles (1,801 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Moderate

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Trail Information  

Notes:  Possible $6 fee to park at trailhead.  Possible shuttle to avoid fee.

Day 8, Wed July 31:  Battle Creek Falls

Meet-up time:  10:00 am

Meet-up Location:  Bonneville Shoreline Trail, Pleasant Grove, UT (40°21’46.5″N 111°42’02.8″W)

Estimated Time:  2 hrs

Length:  1.2 miles (400 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Easy

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Trail Information  

Note:  We are only going to the waterfall which is 1.2 miles round trip.

Day 9, Thu Aug 1:  Grandeur Peak

Meet-up time:  11:00 am

Meet-up Location:  Church For trailhead, 5861 Mill Creek Canyon Rd, Salt Lake City, UT

Estimated Time:  4.5 hrs

Length:  6.5 miles (2,647 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Strenuous

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Trail Information  

Notes:  $3 fee for Millcreek Canyon.

Day 10, Fri Aug 2:  Temple Quarry

Meet-up time:  10:00 am

Meet-up Location:  Little Cottonwood Creek Trail, Little Cottonwood Rd, Sandy, UT

Estimated Time:  2 hrs

Length:  2 miles (300 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty:  Easy

Facebook Event

Day 11, Sat Aug 3:  Hidden Falls

Meet-up time:  11:00 am

Meet-up Location:  S-Curve in Big Cottonwood Canyon

Estimated Time:  1 hrs

Length:  .6miles (42 ft. elevation gain)

Difficulty: Easy

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Trail Information  

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Temple Side Chats

Starting on July 25, each evening after the hikes, I’ll be stationed across from Temple Square.  With microphone in hand and Facebook Live rolling, our chat will be broadcast around the world.  One hour long, it will start at 7pm MDT.

Who are invited?  Why everyone of course!

  • I hope to see friends and make many new acquaintances.
  • Parents, grandparents and any one interested in protecting every child.
  • Victims and survivors of childhood trauma are particularly welcome.  We mourn for what happened to you.  We cheer for your healing and progress.  We love and support you.  We are standing up to protect today’s children from the indignities that your suffered.

Will there be an empty chair this year?  Yes!  During the hunger strike the chair remained empty for the entire 23 days.  This year I hope it will be occupied every single night.

Who is the empty chair for?  Representatives of any institution that has implemented strong child protection protocols….especially churches.  I invite a pastors, bishops, leaders or members of a congregation to share with the world how they Protect Every Child in their organization.

News Conference

In the midst of the hiking schedule, a new conference will be held.  Please, please come.

  • Date:  Sunday July 28
  • Time:  10:30 am
  • Place:  50 West Club & Cafe
  • Address:  50 West Broadway, SLC

March to End Child Abuse

Remember, the huge upcoming event:  March for the children on October 5, 2019 in Salt Lake City.  Be a part of this historic happening.  Help us leave a lasting imprint on the lives of children who will never experience the horrors of abuse.  We need **5,000** people to show up.  Please come and bring every single person you can muster.

Register HERE.

 

 

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Grass Roots Changes in the Mormon Church

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, aka the Mormon Church, still has a policy in place that requires congregational leaders to regularly take children behind closed doors and ask questions of a sexual nature.  There is no requirement to notify parents when these “worthiness” interviews take place.  The meetings are usually one-on-one unless the child “desires” that another adult be in the room.

Except for the vague instruction that they should not be “unnecessarily probing,” there is no limit to what untrained Mormon leaders can ask a child.  As a result, many bishops continue to ask totally inappropriate, shaming and harmful questions like those found HERE.

The Mormon Church MUST change their irresponsible and outdated policies that have harmed so many children.

Fortunately, there is anecdotal evidence that thoughtful parents and local Mormon leaders are stepping up to protect children on their own.  Here are 3 recent examples.

#1:  Stake president instructs, no one-on-one, no sexual questions!!!

Message receive this morning, July 13, 2019:

Sam, just thought I would drop you a line.  I have followed you for a while and have appreciated your efforts and thought you would enjoy hearing some positive news.

I was recently put into a bishopric in a Utah ward.  During my interviews with the stake presidency, I was determined to tell them that I would not do one-on-one child interviews and would not ask sexual questions.  If that were to be an issue, I could not accept the calling. 

To my great surprise, I was told by the stake presidency without any prompting from me that while I would be doing interviews with children, under no circumstances was I to ever interview a child without a parent present and I am not to ask questions of any sexual nature.

While I don’t know if that same advice was extended to the new bishop I was relieved to hear that from local leadership.  While it is a small step, it made me feel like if enough local leaders feel this way the church will change regardless of the brethren…common consent will eventually win!

#2:  Bishop eliminates one-on-one interviews

A message received yesterday:

Hi Sam, 

I have a family member who is the executive secretary to his bishop.  In their ward there has to be a chaperone for interviews with all minors and all women. Basically their bishopric has decided that if a minor or any female meets with any member of the bishopric, one of the other members of the bishopric or the executive secretary has to also be in attendance as a “chaperone” as they put it.

I know this isn’t being done everywhere and that it may not be the policy at a stake level.  Either way I know I’m happy to see it’s being done in that ward and a good step.

#3:  Bishop asks all parents to be in interviews

Recently the Mormon church sent out a survey soliciting opinions about a “proposed change” to the age for “worthiness” interviews.  Following is one of the public comments on 2KUTV’s FB page.

My brother in law is a bishop.  Every interview with a minor, he invites the parents/guardian to join them. Sometimes they refuse and other times they join. He says he interviews the same.

Good for the bishop.  There is no policy to ask parents to be present in the interviews.  He has chosen a path of protection for both the child and himself.  I can only hope that this bishop has also ditched the sexual questions.  To ask them in front of parents would be doubly shaming for the child.

Help Us Stop Child Abuse

*Protect Every Child (PEC) is no longer a lonely voice.   A COALITION of 7 organizations have rallies to our cause.  If you are part of an association who is working to protect children or support survivors, please let me know if you would like to be added to the coalition.  PEC applauds and supports the good works that all these organizations are doing to stamp out child abuse.

*Climb a mountain and save a child.  Climb a mountain, a hill or a driveway.  Unfurl a banner, take a picture share it everywhere you can.

*On October 5, 2019, bring your banners to Salt Lake City and March for the Children.  Please register in advance.  This will be an historic event.  The first major march aimed at halting child sex abuse.  Be one of the 5,000 participants shouldering our sacred responsibility to protect every child.

Protect Children Quote

Banners on Kilimanjaro

 

On June 5, 2019, 4 men reached the summit of Kilimanjaro with a common purpose:  Call for universal protections for every child against overt and covert sexual abuse.  This supremely important message was consecrated with a prayer, the text of which is shown below.

This was the hardest physical thing that I’ve ever done.  For six straight days, we hiked long hours to reach the launching point of the final ascent.  It began at midnight and took 8 1/2 hours of non-stop, seemingly vertical plodding to reach Uhuru Peak.  We dubbed it the death march.

The climb was difficult.  My sore legs will completely recover.  But the children who are sexually abused will live with the consequences for decades.  Please join me in doing what is in our power to stop the horrors.

Prayer for Children—Written by Gina Colvin

(Read at the 19,341 ft. summit of Kilimanjaro)

Mother, Father God, upon whose majestic ancestor mountain we stand, we bring before you our concerns for the children of this world and the unduly dangerous roads that many will innocently cross today.  

We ask a blessing of care over them.

We call to mind their bodies and the terrible vulnerability of our young people;

May governments, institutions, communities and families guard these tender children’s bodies well.  May their bodies be furnished with every good and lovely grace of protection and care, so that they might grow straight and strong, unencumbered by the traces of evil left upon them by the hand of avarice or neglect.

We bear in mind the spirits and souls of our children:

May all of those in positions of guardianship and care, nurture with great gentleness the Divinity and sparkle of God within, that is each child’s birthright.

We ask a blessing upon the minds of our precious youth;

May their teachers and guides be well formed and wholesome  in their own thoughts and ideas, so that all children are protected from ignorance, impoverished intellects and tyrannical ideologies that put them out of step with their true identities and belonging.

We ask a blessing on the hearts of our little ones; 

May our children be made free to feel joy, and compassion, wonder and peace at all of your creation.   May they encounter their inevitable suffering with clear minds so that they are well positioned to transform their suffering into wisdom.

And finally, we ask a blessing upon the children and adults who have been harmed by abuse, war, neglect and poverty.

Bless their broken hearts and bodies to find kindness, generosity and healing.   

And may they find deep assurances from the Source of all Compassion that they are, each of them, the Beloved.

In the name of the Creator, Pain Bearer and Breath of Life.

Amen

How can you help?

Sign the new Petition:

Climb a mountain, hilltop or driveway.  Unfurl and banner and share it.

Come to the March for the Children on October 5, 2019 in Salt Lake City.  This is the big one.  If we have 5,000 marchers, the national media will be all over it.  Institutions will be warned.  Huge awareness will be raised.  Children will be protected.  Past victims will take solace.

 

Great Grass Roots News

March Don't Make me grow up

Today, I received 3 encouraging reports.

  1. Several active families in Tucson are working in their stake to implement petition style interviews.
  2. Several active families in Scotland are working on the same thing.  They have promised to return & report.
  3. Then, the following letter.  Amazing letter.  Sent by a father of 3 daughters to his good bishop.  He attended the march and was disappointed that not one word was uttered at general conference about protecting our children.

Hello [Bishop],

You may have heard about the rally that was held last Friday in support of asking the Church to update its policies regarding Bishops interviewing children one on one and to also stop asking children sexually explicit questions. A petition was also presented to the Church leaders with over 56,000 signatures requesting these changes be made. I want you to know that I signed the petition and I participated in the rally as well. I want you to understand that this is in no way an indication that I do not trust you as a person. I think you are a good man and I’m glad you’re the Bishop of the ward. 

That being said, I think that it would better serve our children if the church worldwide updated its policy to require two adults in the room when children are being interviewed. This would be similar to the scouting program, where two deep leadership is a requirement at all times. Both for the safety of the child and for the protection of the adult from possible false accusations.

I realize that the church last week updated its policy to allow the child to request another adult be present in interviews if they wish, but I don’t think this goes far enough. This places the burden of protection on the child, who may not even know that it’s an option for another adult to be present. Considering my support for this cause, I felt I would be lacking if I didn’t communicate with you concerning my wishes for my children.

I am respectfully requesting the following with regard to my children:

  • My wife or I will be present in all interviews, whether with you or one of your counselors. Even if an interview is to be brief, one of us must be present. This includes formal interviews (such as at birthdays) or informal (such as a quick pulling in from the hall for a class presidency re-arrangement).
  • If in the event one of my children requests that someone other than me or my wife be present, we will allow them to choose who should be present (such as a counselor, or YW president or advisor, etc.)
  • Explicit questions about moral worthiness will not be asked to my children. The very nature of determining “worthiness” insinuates that a child may be unworthy. My children are good kids and I know that God loves them. Even if they do make mistakes, as we all do in life, I do not want them to ever feel that they are unworthy before God. They are always worthy of his love, no matter what. My wife and I, as parents, can help them with the repentance process and to accompany them to visit with you if that is needed. I am requesting that you do not ask explicit questions about masturbation, sexual orientation, or any other intimate sexual activity. These are items that My wife and I will discuss with our children in our home, as their parents. I do not think it is appropriate for a young girl to be in a room alone with a man, any man, and be asked these types of questions.
  • Children are not under covenant to obey the Law of Chastity. That is a temple covenant. We will discuss chastity in our home with our children. What it means, and how it relates to them. However, I do not want them being asked by an adult man if they are sexually pure. I believe that this type of questioning could possibly play a role in a child at some future point being groomed by other adults (whose intentions are evil) if the child feels that it’s OK to discuss sexual topics with an adult man. Now, maybe you never would ask these explicit questions. But there are plenty of Bishops out there who do. And it is damaging. It is damaging to a child’s sense of worth, and it could be damaging to their sexual development that could cause relationship and mental health issues both in the present and later in life. It is damaging that a child may develop a sense that they are not worthy of God’s love, as was the case for me during my teenage years.

If you would like to discuss this further or have any questions, I’m happy to have a conversation with you. However, as the father of my daughters, I respectfully request that you consider and adhere to my requests above. Thank you.

“My bishop replied that he would respect my wishes. Now, if more people would do this, we could force change! And bishops may make this their own policy even if they are not mandated by SLC.”

Good Point

My friend has a good point.  20,000 people have now signed the Protect-the-Children petition.  What would happen if only 1,000 of us sent a letter to our bishop?  We CAN make this change in the trenches before SLC eventually decides to do the right thing.

If you send a letter or talk directly to your bishop, please share it on the Success Stories page.  Today, we have 12.  Tomorrow there will be hundreds…as we each take individual action.

What Can You Do Now?

Help bolster our army of thundering lions.  Our petition currently has 20,138 signatures.   My next goal is 30,000.

If you haven’t already, Sign the Petition.

If you can, Share the Petition….again.

Every week that goes by, children continue to be egregiously harmed behind bishop’s closed doors in Mormon churches all around the world.

IT’S.TIME.TO.PULVERIZE.THIS.POLICY.

Links

Sign the Petition

 

 

Something New to Evoke Tears

March 30 MarchTonight I cried anew.  Pretty hard.  This time, it’s not because of the stories.

What an amazing rally!!!  Great local and national publicity.  Awareness is starting to gallop.  The advocacy team performed beyond my wildest expectations.  I’m not crying about the march.  I’m relishing in its afterglow.

Here’s what happened:

We Just got back from a family outing.  I turned on my computer.  Checked email.  One popped up from Paypal.  I was stunned…$15,175 in new donations.  One for $75.  One for $100!  One for $5,000!!  One for $10,000!!!  That made me cry.

Fund raising is uncomfortable for me.  This is the first time I’ve ever done it.  I would prefer to pay every damn bill out of my own pocket.  However, I realize that my friends want to be involved more deeply in our cause.  And…we can achieve our goal faster.

Prior to today, many $100 contributions had come in.  A few at $1,000.  A couple at $2,000.  One at $3,000.

Until now, I had hesitated mentioning the larger numbers, not wanting to diminish the importance of $5 donations.  $5 is huge.  I don’t care what amount you have donated, you are putting your money where your heart is.  Do not apologize that you wish you could have donated more.  Nope.  If you think I have any integrity, then you had better believe me…$5 is gigantic.

As I was greeted with $15,175 tonight, I cried.  I cried at the new confirmation that our cause is not grinding to a halt.  Instead, we are gaining momentum in every possible way.  Even the financial piece.

WE.ARE.GOING.TO.WIN.THIS.WAR!!!!

FYI

Expenses:

Approx.  $126,000.

All the costs for the march are not in yet.  There may be a couple more thousand when all is said and done.  You can find a prior breakdown HERE

Donations:

$66,344.54

Including $614.71 cash donated at the march.

I am NOT posting this to request additional money.  This is my spirit of transparency that eases my fundraising discomfort.

I’m blown away at how much has come in.  Obviously, people care deeply about protecting our children,

THANK YOU for your contributions and for you understanding.

 

Local Rallies–March For The Children

Lion March Local RallyThe March March is Nearing

Only 4 weeks to go before the March-For-The-Children event in SLC on March 30, 2018.  Details and registration can be found HERE.  Current registration stands at 347.  Only 653 away from our goal of 1,000.

Local Rallies

Many friends of Protect-The-Children who want to come to the march are constrained by time, distance, or money.

Good News!!!  We are organizing local rallies in offsite locations to coincide with the Utah march.  Same date, same time…different place.  Imagine 20 people in Seattle, 30 in Dallas, 25 in St. Louis and so on and so on and so on!

Every place we have a gathering, local media will be invited to cover.  We are expecting the national media to be at the SLC event.  The local rallies will illustrate in a big way that our cause is a country-wide movement and deserves national attention.

This will be a big step in bringing awareness to good Mormon parents and bishops everywhere.  So far, our efforts have reached some.  The march will extend our reach many times over.

If you are interested in participating in a local rally, please register here.  A volunteer coordinator will reach out to you soon.

Come help us save our children!!!  Whether it be at Church Headquarters or at local venues all across the country, your efforts will protect generations of children to come.

Links

Another Stake President supports? Encouraging News from the Trenches

TempleRecommend

A recent message from an active LDS member who supports the petition tenets.

Sam, just wanted to give you further good news.  I just finished my recommend interview with my stake president.  I told him specifically of my support for your petition and that I signed it.  Long story short, he said that he sees nothing in that which is contradictory to the church. He said he thinks that there will be guidance coming down that addresses it and believes that the church will change its policies.  He had no issue granting me my recommend.  The interview was with the stake president himself, not a counselor. 

Far more people support you than oppose you. They just usually aren’t as loud. That’s why I think it’s important to express it. Have a great week Sam!

Everyone I’ve ever talked to OUTSIDE the church knows our interview practices are awful.  I love the confirmation of this friend that more active members than not also know our policies MUST be changed.

Join Our Historic March-For-The-Children

If you are in Utah, within driving distance, or even flying distance, come help us assure that the children of the future don’t repeat the dreadful experiences of children in our past.

On March 30, 2018 we will gather at the Salt Lake City/County Building.  Then march 5 blocks to the LDS Church Office Building.  Upon arrival, we will present 2 items to church officials:

  • The signatories on the Petition to Protect The Children–Stop Sexually Explicit Interviews of Mormon Youth
  • Sacred Stories of Sacred Children.  A record of childhoods destroyed behind closed doors.

Register here so we can get an accurate count ahead of time.  Our goal is 1,000 marchers.  It’s going to be big.

How can you help protect our children:

  • Share the march info everywhere.
  • Bring your friends & family.
  • Encourage friends & family in Utah and surrounding states to join us.

We are making Mormon history.  Come make it with us.  It will be a once in a lifetime event.

***Please Share the March-For-The-Children FAR and WIDE***

Links

Sign the Petition

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