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We made it to the summit on 7/17/18. It was the most beautiful hike I've ever been on! It was long and difficult because we did it in a day. I just turned 65 and wanted to accomplish something really cool. Mt. Whitney was the perfect choice!

Did this hike in the middle of July 2018 on a day that was quite hot. Much of the trail goes along roads which can be a blessing or a curse, depending on how rugged you want your hike to be. We passed many trucks on our hike but not a single hiker to be seen. We went through jackass trail which had groves of poison oak growing next to and on the trail but this area is starkly beautiful as you're walking through a charred oak forest "graveyard".

The trail is about 60% covered by oaks and manzanita, but 40% is pretty exposed so make to wear sunscreen. Also note that the water table is low so the water pumps are all empty so the only water you have is what you take with you.

Overall this is a hike best left for spring when the weather isnt as oppressive. You'll need every bit of help going through the shortcut and poverty flat at the end. The trails arent too rugged so it makes for clear directions but less intimate exploration.

We took the Hamms Gulch up and then took the Lost trail and Anniversary trail to get to Spring Ridge Trail to get down - this was about 7.5 miles. The Anniversary trail has awesome bay views. Hamms Gulch was mostly covered with trees and wild flowers. The other three are very sunny.

We hiked up to trail crest on 7/15 (13,400 feet), and didn't get to summit. There was no snow on the trails and conditions were completely clear that day. No bear sightings, but there were a couple marmots after the 97 switchbacks.

We summit on 7/9 starting at 2am and we were able to summit by 7am, beautiful view and beautiful sunrise and great group to do this hike with. This is my 2nd time I summited Mt Whitney. The first time I did it in 2004 and it’s as beautiful as I remember. 14 years later, I’m glad I can still do this hike.

Definitely well shaded. There are a few steeper sections, but they are all very manageable and short in length. Camp Pomponio Road is a little rough, but should be passable to most vehicles (I was able to get my Porsche Cayman to the trailhead with no trouble).

Beautiful trail, lots of shade

Great hike, Sequoias are amazing!

Great hike just peaked Greyback via dollar lake trail on July 3, 2017. Weather was spectacular. Loved this way up better than Vivvian Creek. Longer but not crazy verticle like Vivvian. The best source of water is at the trail divide. Yes there is water at High Meadows but tough to find and tough to get at. Stayed over night at Red campground great spot.

An amazing hike that’s fairly simple with lots of water. I hiked it about 5 years ago as there was a heat wave. Be prepared for all kinds of weather. It was worth it though!

Hiked it on Sunday 7/8. Beautiful views. Harder than expected. There is still a long section to go after the 97 switchbacks. Started at 3:20am, took us about 16 hours total. Got to summit at 12:45pm. We got stuck in some rain and hail coming down around 1:30 or so. Some of the river crossings got a little hairy with the added water from the rain. Snow/ice wasn’t an issue going up.

Awesome trees...
And trail. Hiked this one long before Alltrails existed.

Very dry. There was no wildlife and “crystal springs.” However it was a nice good work out. Finished in about 2.5 hours

Hiked with a group of 7 on 7/5/18. We left at 2:45am and arrived at the summit shortly before noon. Trail was in great shape and no snow remaining across the trail itself, though a few places on the switchbacks that have water runoff were icy on the way up due to the morning timing. No ice on the way down as it was around 60 degrees by then.
We stayed at the top for about 40 minutes to enjoy the spectacular view and pleasant weather plus get some rest. Started back down around 12:40 and arrived back to Whitney Portal around 7:30pm.
Our group had 2 people in their 60’s, 3 in their 50’s and 2 under 30. Everyone made it. We were surprised to see dozens of people still climbing when we were on our way down even passed Trail Crest. Would have been very late arrival for those groups back at Whitney Portal.

This was incredibly hard in the middle of summer...as everyone says, bring plenty of water!! At least 4 liters. You’ll need every drop. This trail is relentless!

Hiked on 7/5/18. Set off at 3am with my GF and at her pace reached Trail Crest until Noon. Trail Crest to the summit is about 1.9miles but this also took longer than expected due to her fear of heights and some sketchy rock areas. She pushed through and we reached the summit. Absolutely perfect conditions. No wind at the summit and a nice warm air. We hiked back in the dark 45mins after passing Trail Camp. Headlamps are a must for this hike. Pack enough food as your body will certainly need it. Grueling yet very rewarding experience as a day hike. It’s beautiful at the higher elevations so the allure of camping overnight is definitely justified. There are several points to refill before Trail Camp, 3-4L should get you by if you refill. Take more if you’re like me and like to avoid stopping for water. Never experienced AMS but our pace was very manageable. If you’re day hiking, you can camp at the sites next to the Portal trailhead for one night and just leave your stuff in your car and bear boxes in the parking lot. Truly amazing experience!!

Did this short trek a week ago and was one of the most amazing places I’ve ever seen or experienced. The largest Giant Sequoia (giant Grizzly) is thought to be 1,900 to 2,000 years old. A must do when in Yosemite!

14 days ago

Very nice and shady hike. Saw several banana slugs and all kinds of birds. Very few people this morning and we got there that at about 10:30am on Sunday. The sandstone deck is a nice photo op. There were some mountain bikers who were quite cautious and respectful. That little portion down to the bottom of Fir trail is awesome. The rest of the hike is easy but sticking with that descent and hike up gives you a great little workout with plenty of time to relax for the remainder of the hike.

Great hike among trees over 2000 years old. The fire marks are for the Sequoias’ benefit as they thrive in normal fire cycles of about 20 years and their bark offers fire resistance. Last controlled burn was in 2000.

16 days ago

Completed this clockwise this morning and used about 3l of water total. In early July I was able to fill up just before going up The Shortcut and could have also filled up at at the intersection of Poverty Flat and China Hole, if I’d needed to. Despite being July the weather was very mild 8C when I set off and 22C by the time I got back to the headquarters.

The Short Cut is quite challenging but a slow and steady approach works well. I definitely recommend cutting down Jackass Trail as the views and single track are great. My rating for this route is 4* to reflect the general lack of single track when good routes are there.

Instead of walking back up Poverty Flat I cut up China Hole Trail and briefly walked along Forest Trail before finishing the last 1km on Corral. Definitely recommended if you enjoy single track my route: 5* :-).

Total time for ~26km was 4h55m. Honestly I expected this to be more difficult than it was. I walked with poles for the first time and suspect this may have made the difference as my legs feel significantly less tired than I anticipated.

Twice attempted to summit and didn’t because of members of the group getting AMS. Got to the saddle, which was beautiful.

The beast of all beast. This trail is a rollercoaster of emotions. Awesome views, alpine lakes, abundant forest critters, relaxing meadows, killer switchbacks and lastly high chance of AMS.

This is and will rank as such a incredible hike to hike to the tallest mountain in the contiguous USA is wonderful it’s also the variety and it’s a opportunity to camp if you get a permit if not get your day hike permit it’s such a wonderful day meeting people all over the world. The trail on 7/1/18 was in excellent shape switch backs are open and the views are stunning.. pacers win the day and it’s awesome it’s a uphill hike.. it’s a real treat

Awesome trail. Did it in 2 days by camping overnight at trail camp. Met many people from all over the world. Make sure you are in decent shape and acclimated to such altitudes.

I completed the full Whitney Portal Trail as a solo day hike on Thursday, June 28th, 2018. I started at the trail head at 3:15am and reached the summit at 9:30am. To acclimate I arrived at Whitney Portal Campground two days prior, on Tuesday 6/26/18. After setting up camp I drove up to Cottonwood Lake Trail - since it has an elevation of just over 10,000 feet - and spent a few hours exploring the trails there. I chose to do that rather than hike up to Lone Pine Lake at the recommendation of Doug from the Whitney Portal Store. His advice was that if you're about to run a marathon, you don't go out and run 10 miles the day before... instead you hydrate and eat to build up energy reserves. That advice and other suggestions from someone who has reached the summit more times than I can imagine was invaluable. He also recommended that I take it slow and easy up through to Trail Crest, if I'm then inclined I can pick up the pace from there to the summit (small steps are still steps forward). Better to do that than possibly burn out by going too quickly up to Trail Crest. A third suggestion required a conscious change of behavior... deep breathing. Shallow breathing does not get enough oxygen into the system. I tried to maintain deep breathing throughout the hike, but at various times I reverted back to my usual shallower breathing... I quickly felt the difference. For example, toward the summit I reverted to shallow breathing - likely due to fatigue and drop in temperatures, it was very very cold once past Trail Crest, with the temps dropping as I got closer to the summit - with the shallower breathing I began to lose coordination and balance. At one point I was literally stumbling along like a drunk in a B-movie. I stopped, ate something to get some energy, and changed my breathing from shallow to deep breaths. The stumbling did not resume and I made it the final 1/2 mile or so to the summit. Second note on temperature, I recommend that you be prepared with at least another outer layer and head cover, possibly even gloves (the latter as my fingers went from numb, to feeling like plastic, to stiff and no feeling at all).

In regard to trail conditions... having been in camp for two days and talking with others who were returning to Whitney Portal from their own hikes, I opted to leave my microspikes and ice axe in camp. I only used my trekking poles. They were sufficient for the icy sections of trail. I only encountered intermittent sections of ice along the switchbacks as the water that flows across or down those switchbacks freezes overnight into layers of ice. However there are rocks and gravel to either or both sides so it is relatively easy to pick a creative path and get past the ice without trouble (trekking poles were very helpful on those occasions when I did slip). The section of trail with the poles and cable was a bit challenging early in the morning but I was able to break ice off of the narrow stone pathway between the snow bank and the poles/cable. Note that just a few hours later this section of trail was much different, the snow bank was pushed back by nearly 2 feet (someone may have done so manually with their ice axe for the benefit of all). Also all ice along the switchbacks was melted by that time, those areas were just shallow flows of water.

Last bit of advice... watch for falling rock. As I was making my way down the switchbacks a large boulder came hurtling down from above and smashed into the trail between myself and a lady who was about 20 feet ahead of me. She, her hiking partner, and myself immediately made haste to get out of that area.

My total hike time was just under 13 hours (finished at 4:11pm), I took a bit longer coming down than going up for the mere fact that I know that I can be clumsy. I wanted to finish without injury, it wasn't a race for time, for me it was a major test of self and a significant bucket list achievement.

An excellent way to spend the day with my son. Leaving @ 3:00am was a good decision. Starting our hike under the light of a full moon was awesome! I highly recommend it.

Made it from Whitney Portal to Whitney Trail Camp on Sunday June 24th. Just one snow patch before Trail Camp, nothing complicated, shoes totally fine.
Half the group made it to the Summit. Used micro spikes for confidence, snow melting fast so earlier aka night time to summit is better.
While camping at Trail Camp, saw hikers stuck after the 99 switchbacks to the summit because the snow melted so bad they couldn’t cross (probably fine if you have done this before or have mountaineering skills aka ice axe). Ice axe was not used by most people when crossing early.

We walked the Grizzly Giant Loop, and added a 2 mile roundtrip pit stop to see the Faithful Couple. The new boardwalk with informational panels at the beginning of the trail are wonderful. Also appreciate the shuttle service from the large parking lot to the trailheads. Very easy, well shaded, very little height gain.

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