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

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We did it on October 19th 2018, there was snow on the trail so we had to use spikes. Since it was my first high altitude hike did the telescope peak in death valley day before to get acclimated. Trail is beautiful but you won't have lot of time to enjoy the views if u want to finish the hike on time. Started hike at 3:30am summited around 1 PM and finished it around 8:30pm. I carried 4 litter of water but hardly used 2 liters since I don't drink that much water on my hikes but would recommend carrying 4 liters. One of hiker from our team ran out of water ended up headind back since he couldn't find water on the trail.

AMAZING HIKE!!

Pros
-Great things to see the whole way up.
-Finding the trail was not too difficult.
-Everyone is very friendly on trail.

Cons
-Very rocky terrain the entire way. Make sure to wear good hiking shoes.
-Very steep and not easy. Make sure to stay hydrated, stretch, and pace yourself. I didnt do any of those and cramped up pretty hard. I was lucky people were nice enough to provide water and energy bars.

Some people brought their dogs. I thought the ground was too rocky and sharp for them. Not a good idea if your dog is not used to that.

Worth it! Just dont be an idiot like me and prepared.

hiking
15 days ago

Tough trail, not a warm-up by any means.

beautiful for a nice winter hike.

it was a great snowy winterland. it was a wonderful trek and not to long. it is also pretty well marked except after the waterfall. then it got tricky so I decided not to continue and headed back down.

hiking
19 days ago

It was a beautiful and fun easy hike. It has great views of the lake. if you are short on time and want a beautiful hike this is the one. you first walk through the trees then eventually along the mountain. Mid hike it gets rocky so just be aware of your stepping. We went Thanksgiving weekend and the river was flowing but just not at full capacity. I would want to do this hike again in the Spring to see the river when the snow melts. but overall it was a beautiful hike!

Great Hike! Dont underestimate the difficulty level. Took me 5 hours to get up and 3 to get down. Got to the car right as it was turning pitch black outside

Amazing hike!

hiking
22 days ago

I hiked this from Vikingsholm a few miles down towards DL Bliss and back. It was a bright sunny walk along the edge of a beautiful mountain lake. Despite that I saw no other hikers on the trail. This was an amazing break between days of driving. So peaceful!

hiking
22 days ago

I was here mid-week in mid-November and saw very few people. The trail (road) down is unremarkable but wow... That's an amazing piece of architecture at the end. It's definitely worth it for that and for the opportunity to spend some time lazing on the shore of the stunning Emerald Bay.

Great views!

Wow. Did this a while back. Stayed the night at the trail head to acclimate, hit the trail the next morning. Setup camp at 10k feet or so and had terrible elevation sickness. Migraine from 3pm till the end of the next day (bottom of the mountain). Day 2 we hiked from 10k to summit and then all the way down. Though it was the worst hike ever, it was one of the best hikes ever! With so little light pollution, the stars at night are freaking amazing!

hiking
24 days ago

Loved it. Great views. A good amount of uphill climbing on the way up to Eagle Lake but well worth it!

hiking
24 days ago

This is a wonderful easy hike that is easy to access. Getting to the falls is pretty easy until you get very close, then the trail becomes a little unclear. Even so, just keep going straight and you will see where the falls are. Right now the water is barely moving. Would love to come back and check this out after a snow melt!

hiking
25 days ago

Amazing views all around, watch your step, & keep your kids away from the mountain edge, lots of slippery loose rocks. Parking is sheer luck if you get one. So much beauty here, enjoy!

Easy hike, lots of people, beautiful views.

Great trail for families. Kids loved climbing the rocks. Beautiful views.

5 stars for beautiful family trail but had to only give 3 because waaaay too crowded

hiking
25 days ago

Beautiful, one of my favourite lakes in the basin. Steep climb up but fantastic views

Boring walk, but worth it when you get the beach at the end.

hiking
27 days ago

nice hike, uphill, theres a cute bridge for pictures & leads you to the lake

As of 11/18 still no snow to deal with but frigid temps early am before sunrise. Short but steep hike, on a brisk November day it was nearly empty! Took me 5 hours total.

on Vikingsholm Trail

walking
27 days ago

A great trail to go with kids. Really nice views of Emerald Bay. We went with a 1.5 and 3.5 year old and they really enjoyed it, especially the beach at the end! It’s very easy on the way down, and steep on the way up (for just about a mile, so totally doable!) Arrive early for parking! Parking area is $10.

great view, kids and dog friendly, the lake is an amazing meditation place

I did this with two friends on October 26, 2018. We are all in our mid thirties. It was a bluebird day with not a cloud in the sky, and I think it was probably averaged around 40-45 degrees for the entire day. The summit was above freezing for sure when we summited at noon.

Timing:
We stayed at the Comfort Inn in Lone Pine the night before and the night after the hike. We got on the trail at 3 a.m. and summited right around noon. We started our decent at 1 p.m. and got back to the trailhead at 8 p.m. So that’s 9 hours up and 7 hours down.

Dealing with Altitude:
I live in Salt Lake City, so I have access to some elevation and did a bunch of training hikes to 11,000 feet on the weekends to get used to the altitude. The two other guys live at sea level but did their best to hike as much as they could before our attempt. We all ended up getting prescriptions for acetazolamide and starting cycling on that and 400-600 milligrams of ibuprofen every six hours starting about 12 hours before we started out. For two of us, we really had no symptoms of altitude sickness beyond very mild headaches at the top. The other guy got a pretty decent headache that subsided during our decent.

Food:
I think we all ate much less food than I thought we would. I ate two sleeves of Clif Bar Shot Bloks and took a caffeine pill on the way up (which might have contributed to an upset stomach). And I also ate 4-5 Clif Bars, some beef jerky, a pretty good-sized bag of gummy bears, and some nuts. I brought I peanut butter and jelly sandwich that I never even ate, but the other two guys ate their PB & J at the summit.

Water:
I brought four liters of liquid with me. Three liters of water and one liter of Gatorade. My doctor told me to drink a sports drink with the acetazolamide. I ended up drinking 2 liters of the water and the Gatorade and gave the rest of the water to my hiking buddies on the way down. We actually got back to the parking lot with nothing to drink between us all, which is probably not the smartest play. I did bring a filter with me though just in case things got real out there.

Gear:
We all used adjustable hiking poles. We have backup batteries for our headlamps since a good amount of the hike was in the dark. Sun lotion. I had a wide-brimmed hat for the sun. I had four layers on the top and three on my legs and was overdressed for most of the day. I was prepared for the day to be 10 degrees colder than it was. We all had microspikes, but I think I was the only one who used them.

Overall:
The 99 switchbacks might get you down, but once you top out after those, you are pretty golden. That where the trail gets super interesting and the views are ridiculous. The only thing I might do different if I did this again was to try to move a bit faster to get down before dark since spirits were running low for the last couple miles of the decent. Reach out to me if you have any questions about the hike. I’d be happy to talk about it.

If you can break this up into two days do it. We day hiked it, left at 2am and back by 6pm. Super long day. Camped at Alabama Hills on the way out.

Great hike. It was a little longer, but worth every step. The most beautiful hike I’ve ever done. Go early in the morning to be beat the crowds. Brings at least 2 L of water if you’re an experienced hiker. Go all the way to the top! Definitely bring proper gear, food & plenty of water.

hiking
1 month ago

moderate to hard hike..harder on descent then cardio on way up as a lot of shale on trail..where as elevation gain is gradual..thighs will feel it on way down..trekking poles not my thing at this stage..but be sure of footing due to rocks..couple spots trail does somewhat disappear..but not hard to rediscover..fantastic weather for mid November and great views..at summit as well as ridgeline at start along fallen leaf lake..couple smaller lakes along way up for h20..but overall I would rate it moderate..and Jessie hope u were ok on descent..

Challenging hike. Wear proper gear and bring food, and water. When hiking in the fall or winter, start early or you will be hiking in the dark. It can take 5 to 7 hours to complete for an average hiker while taking time to appreciate the views of Lake Tahoe, Fall Leaf Lake and the surrounding evergreen forests

easily accessible

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