Explore Mt Whitney Training - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Mt Whitney Training Map
22 hours ago

Got a little lost, would highly suggest keeping a map close by. Great hike overall. Little hidden ponds were fun to find.

This hike was amazing. It's along day, so give yourself about 10 hours. Also, I highly recommend sun protection for above the treeline.

A monster of a hike but well rewarding. Give yourself plenty of time and start early.

Hiked in mid October. It was raining and cold but overall hike was great. We only made it to the creek before heading back up about 7 miles there and back. It's all uphill with no breaks on the way back. Saw lots of evidence of bears but didn't encounter any thank goodness. So be prepared for that. It's a beautiful hike over all.

We hike the Vivian Creek Trail, yesterday October 13, 2018, it was rainy, foggy, and cold: time 7:00AM to 3:00PM. The storm came in. Once we got to High Creek Camp Site, there was snow - you will need your snow chains and dress warm. If you need water, there are creeks and streams near Halfway Campsite at 8,285ft; High Creek Campsite at 9,400ft, but bring a water filter - use the flowing streams/areas to filter water. Bring waterproof clothes. Good experience, but be careful. It is still one of my favorite hike. :)

15 days ago

Excellent trail, plenty of parking space on the pine valley trailhead but don’t forget your adventure pass in the general store right as you enter pine valley! Great place for a solitude getaway, with plenty of spots to lay a tent down if an overnighter is your thing, like myself. Not much of a water source in mid October so bring water. And be sure to be mindful of where you leave your food for there were mountain lions all over at night. Just the trail I was looking for.

4 hours to get to the top lots of rocks but well worth it hard run down

The best of the 6 SoCal peak challenge.... also my friend’s and I last one too!

Anyways, the views are worth the barriers of wind or incline (switchbacks and vertical at the end). BUT we had flash floods towards the river bank due to HAIL/RAIN/THUNDER as we descended down around 2pm, also the forecast said sunny and 20% chance of rain.... but not DOWNPOUR.

Bring waterproof clothing just in case or else you’ll be walking drenched through the camping sights where most of the water starts rushing down on the trail itself.

Make sure to get out of the hike before it gets dark especially at the end of summer season

Still my favorite :)

Great escape from OC. Cool breezes, sometimes really windy, and fresh air. I came unfortunately unprepared as it was a spontaneous trip- I brought 1 liter of water and forgot my main bottle at home. Definitely need 2+ liters if you want to make it to the top. With photo searching, carrying my camera bag and tripod, and using trekking poles, at just a leisure pace it’ll take 6+ hours to get to the top. Love seeing so much trees, and all of the hikers I crossed were very friendly. Gets really windy at the top and at times freezing. I’m excited for my next trip and hopefully go around closer to November or December. I had also seen people who just go jogging up and down with just a hydration pack.

**If you start this hike before dawn, please read**

Immediately after the first "Trail" sign, do not follow the wash of the creek. The trailhead is ACROSS the wash. In darkness this sign is almost impossible to see. There are footprints along the wash that make it look like a trail, but again, do not follow the wash. Cross it. I made this mistake and ended up hiking 6 miles before we came to the conclusion that we were off track. One of the park rangers told me she had met many other people who made the same mistake. You can still coordinate your GPS location on the trail map even when you don't have service.

The next weekend (Sep 22) we went again and took the right trail. This was a gorgeous, scenic hike! The hardest of the Six Pack of Peaks but also very rewarding. It took us 5hr 4m to summit and 3hr 30m to descend. I used about 3L of water along with refilling some at the campsite on the way down.

29 days ago

Definitely an accomplishment! Great to be at the top above everything else. Make sure to take the little spur to the right at the saddle around 7.3 miles. Great views and rest before the toughest part of the climb.
We started at 630 on friday and saw only a few folks going up, summit about 1215, return took a little under 4 hours. Saw more filks on the way down, but i would not suggest a day hike starting after 7.

Peaked on 22nd Sept. It was a perfect day with barely any winds. Another group who summited last weekend faced 60m/hr winds at the top.
Parking: Start early and you won't have a problem. we started at 3am.
Water: Took 2 litees. Filled twice at High Creek. used clorine tablets to purify.
Trail: Tricky point at the beginning when we cross the riverbed. We had someone who had done it before with us to help us navigate this part in dark. Before descending to the riverbed, shine your headlamp pointing straight ahead until u see the reflection from the trail sign on the other end. Then walk towards that reflection to get to the right trail.

I found the beginning 1.5 mile climb not as difficult as the last 4 miles after High Creek.

Saw 2 guys with serious hunting equipment on the trail between Vivian and High Creek, hunting deers! I talked to the ranger and found out, the hunting season is on but they were not in the destinated hunting area. If u see something say something. Don't hesitate to question and report folks who seem out of place. Their arrow can hit any hiker if they hunt in non designated areas.

Again: This one is not for me. Won't do it again. Too long and Peak not as interesting. Glad to get it checked off my bucket list!

I gave this trail a 4 Star because we miss the turn to the trail entrance . Right before wt the fork It should of been mark better after the trial head, we walk straight on the rocky sand along the waterfall for 1.5 miles until ran into a girl who went for 2-3 miles out and realize she was lost . So after all that we end up with 20.3 miles
Moderate, not too hard. You can bring 3-4 frozen water bottle is enough. Depend how you hydrate, plus a jacket , it can be really cold around September.
It’s a beautiful trial !!

Water update for Vivian Creek trail:
I just completed this challenging but rewarding hike September 22-23rd. Plenty of water available at Vivian Creek Camp, no water available at Halfway Camp, and plenty of water at High Creek Camp. So do not do what I did and safe yourself of 12 extra unnecessary pounds of water.

My first major hike. Incredibly challenging. It is about 16.7 miles, not 13.4, since Joplin Trail is no where to be found till about 4/5th of the way up to the peak (which is why you see the parallel trail used by others through the forest). I was with a much more experienced hiker and he said it was one of the toughest hikes he’s been on. There are two ways to get started: if you make a left, it’ll be an easier start since it’ll be about a 25% incline, but for us we made a mistake and took the road straight up which gave us about a 50% incline for the first 0.2 miles... I don’t recommend it since there are glass shards and a rolled over jeep in the middle of this incline. About half way up, you’ll start descending about 200 feet and your trail will continue for about 3 miles into the forest, which is why you need wear long pants, bring mosquito repellent and sunscreen. Be aware of mountain bikers zipping down the trail; you won’t see them going up past you since they use a fire lane to get dropped off on top close to the peak then they speed down 4000 feet. Crazy!! You’ll need about 5-6 liters of water. Hiking down was equally as challenging due to the steep slope, slippery rocks and feeling absolutely exhausted so don’t think coming down will be any easier. Pace yourself, take lots of rest and listen to your body. You’ll feel greatly accomplished when done. Good luck!!

1 month ago

Great challenge! On Sept 14 there still was a trickle of water at High Creek; I could have packed 4-5 lbs lighter. I did drink about 4.5 liter - in full sun it still was warm at the top. I saw about a dozen other hikers on a Friday. Weather was great, views were fairly clear, and it was another glorious day on the trail.

off road driving
1 month ago

We came in off 79 by RV Park, turned left up small hill towards private gate and trail viers off to left from there. nice trail with high outlooks and made it up to fire watch tower following pretty easy trail. I saw a lot of stock tire tread patterns in the dirt and passed a three others along the trip but nothing too crowded. keep ur backup points in mind as some sections are narrow for a ways. we were hoping to pop out in the Observatory area and take their tour but gates at that end wefe closed. I had called S. B. Ranger station late last week who told me gates were open so be aware things change. The ride back was still nice and range at watch tower was also nice to talk with. Fire scars show how rough the terrain is to be fighting fires so hats off to them.

Awesome hike! A good portion of the trail is shaded & some water was available. Be careful what you leave in your car, saw a black bear in the parking lot.
Just like everyone else has said, that first mile and those last couple miles to the peak will get ya. To me, all the miles in-between were relatively easy & enjoyable. For a bit I forgot I was in SoCal, it looked like the Pacific Northwest. On the way back, those miles were long, probably because I wanted back to the car.
My pup and I started at 715am & got to the peak at 145pm. It seemed to take everyone we talked to about 6-6.5 hours to summit. The way back took about 4.5 hours.

We only made it to Old Camp as we were not prepared for the overgrown poison oak that started to take over the trail after Old Camp. The hike up to that point was a lot of fun though and very challenging (lots of incline on the way up and some steep slippery downhills on the way out). If you plan on making it all the way to the peak, make sure you wear long pants to protect from the poison oak!

Hard hike more or less uphill for a bit over 9 miles. Water available at Vivian Creek and High Creek Camps (Sept 03, 2018). You don't need a Wilderness Permit for a day hike (but they are highly recommended to help with trail management and S&R if something goes wrong). Wilderness permits are required for all overnight hikes - they're available from the Mill Creek Visitor Center on the way in. Rangers were checking overnight permits on Sept 02, 2018. Wind can be very strong and very cold at the top - make sure you bring warm clothes!

off road driving
1 month ago

Visiting from Arizona we wanted to take the Jeep out for a nice Californian drive. Most of the places up north from this trail were all closed because of the forest fires, But This trail was perfect, just the right amount of hills and low traffic. I aired down the tires and we drove pretty quick through some of the turns it was fun. About a quarter of the way through we saw a another trail heading down the mountain so we gave it a try it was a lot more technical and a lot of fun.

Legs were shot day after, what a workout!

IT IS NOT a 17miles hike, it is 20 miles hike! This is a difficult trail especially the first 2 and the last 3 miles. It took me 7 hours to reach the top and 4 out of 7 hours were spent on the last 3 miles because of the high altitude and steep elevation gain. I had 5 l of water/coffee/Gatorade with me and it was enough for me. It took me 4 hours to get back. Our hike started at 5:15 am and we were back to the car at 5:30pm (11 hrs walking time, around 12 hrs total time). Be ready both physically and mentally to hike this peak !

1 month ago

We hiked a small portion of Vivian creek in June 2018. Very nice trail. Easy to follow. Has a lot of switchbacks and pretty steep climb. Pretty shady, but the next time we will start earlier in the day to avoid the heat. Adventure Pass Required for parking.

One of the hardest but best hikes I have ever completed. Highest peak here in southern California. Did this hike around mid August. The hike was about 60% shade due to the forest. Towards the top it was warm sunny day but also chilly cold breeze. Beware of elevation sickness and pack a large lunch!

Also I found a key on the trail! It's one of those more expensive type electronic keys.

Vivian Creek Trail is now open after the Valley Fire. The trail open up on 08/15/2018.

2 months ago

The trail is back open as of August 15. Check with the Mill Creek Ranger station to confirm that it has not been closed again, but the fire has been contained more and it has been considered safe to use this trail. We hiked it on August 17 and had to hurry down from the peak due to a thunderstorm that was coming in. Overall, this is a great hike. The trail is a little rocky and eroded in spots, but definitely worth doing.

2 months ago

This was a great hike. A good workout but not too hard. It feels way out there but really just a few minutes off the freeway. Pay close attention to the trail markers to stay on the 10 mile loop. We got lost the first time we did this and ended up hiking a total of 14 miles because we had taken a wrong turn at some point.

2 months ago

Fun, beautiful hike! We saw many coyotes and rabbits! Very scenic and lots of shade. I would definitely recommend to others who are looking for a long, somewhat challenging at times, hike!

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