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Mount Whitney Portal to Lone Pine Lake

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Inyo National Forest

Mount Whitney Portal to Lone Pine Lake is a 5.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Lone Pine, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until October. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 5.1 miles Elevation Gain: 1,784 feet Route Type: Out & Back

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

bird watching

running

forest

lake

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no dogs

Note: Due to COVID-19 measures, Whitney Portal Road is closed. Please check with the forest page for more information. No permits required for hikers going no further than Lone Pine Lake. Day hikers going beyond require a day-use permit, obtained from the Mount Whitney Ranger Station in Lone Pine. Overnight hikers require a wilderness permit. Hikers bound for the top of Mount Whitney are controlled by a strict quota system and need to reserve a space far in advance. Fantastic views of Mount Whitney!

hiking
8 days ago

Hey @Nico O. how long roundtrip did the hike take you to finish? How was the weather out there as well?

hiking
9 days ago

Absolutely breathtaking. Hiked this past weekend. Road to Whitney Portal was closed so we hiked the road; making the overall hike about 12miles. Hiking up the road and then trail makes it a strenuous hike - I enjoy a good challenge. Encountered very few people on the trail. Lake it worth it. Highly recommended.

hiking
10 days ago

@ Jennifer B. Heard Whitney Portal Road was closed, may I ask how you got up to the trail head?

hiking
14 days ago

This was amazing. Can’t wait to do it again.

hiking
closed
29 days ago

Whitney Portal Rd is closed due to Covid, can’t get up to the trailhead with a car yet.

hiking
snow
3 months ago

About a mile from the lake where the steep switchbacks start, the snow gets deep, and the trail disappeares. Didn't feel confident randomly walking on steep snow. Was afraid I'd sink too deep and get stuck. Don't know how to rate since I didn't finish but it's a good workout.

4 months ago

Portal Road Closed 3.5 miles before trail head 1/9/20. Trail supoedly still open per park ranger

hiking
snow
6 months ago

About two feet of powder on the 97 switchbacks, but no ice yet!

hiking
6 months ago

Awesome hike .. beautiful nature .. pretty cold while start hike .. only one spot covered with ice .. walk carefully. Lake was frozen. looks very beautiful.

hiking
6 months ago

Hiked up to Mirror Lake on 11/11/2019 and stopped by the Lone Pine Lake on the way back. Beautiful views all around! Lots of switchbacks so would recommend bringing hiking poles. There is only one spot with ice on the ground but can just go to the sides to get past. At my rather leisurely pace, took 4 hours to get up and 2.5 to come down. Would definitely come back to summit Mt Whitney!

hiking
icy
6 months ago

Great hike. Went the first Saturday of November ‘19. It was cold but not too cold. Elevation made it a little tough but nothing crazy. Once at the lake though the cold got too unbearable. Was wishing and hoping for the sun to make its way from behind the mountain. Ended up going back a little earlier than expected to get some sunshine. Overall great hike. Views were amazing.

Total workout! It started snowing so it was cool! Totally worth all the breathes!

hiking
7 months ago

Help my friend back down due to altitude sickness. maybe next year.

hiking
muddy
no shade
rocky
scramble
7 months ago

beautiful painful hike! just make sure to give your self to acclimate to the altitude the days leading up to the hike. we did an over night trip. it was a great experience. would definitely recommend

hiking
7 months ago

We have talked about this hike before...now it's done. "A beautiful alpine lake above the portal" is what we had read. The experience was well worth the effort! With an elevation gain of around 1700 ft. and breathtaking views of the Owens Valley! The constant climb was brutal...next time we will acclimate before going up. Still the weather, the fellow Whitney Trail Hikers, and the fall colors made for one of my favorite hikes! And as usual, the mountain restored some peace to my soul.

hiking
7 months ago

Elevation was a tough one, but if I lived in the area I’d do this one over and over again!

Perfect conditions, a good 3,5 h hike. I would say the trail is moderate not hard.

hiking
7 months ago

Hiked Oct 12th - Saturday of holiday weekend. No permit required. Dog friendly on this trail; be advised that dogs aren’t permitted on the Mt Whitney summit. If you choose to continue on with your dog, check the official Inyo website for the end of the line for dogs. I enjoyed this trail! It was well maintained and there are cut outs on trees marking the trail as well. My GPS logged 6.9 miles; maybe a half mile of that was from parking in a farther lot and walking along the side of the lake.. but it’s definitely Longer than 5.1 miles. I started at 10 AM (plenty of parking in overflow lot) and maintained a bit over 2 mph up and made it to lone pine lake by 1130. About 4 mph on return, 50 min or so. As a fairly athletic 28 year old that hikes occasionally, and with a 2 year old lab mix, I considered this hike moderate but leaning slightly toward easy and we really booked it. The altitude can get you a bit dizzy though if you aren’t used to it. It’s a short enough hike though to take your time if needed! Trail was well trafficked; probably about a minute between each group of hikers in both directions. Most people seemed to be trekking on to higher and longer trails, so there was some slowing down to scuttle by those with big packs and poles. Bring layers if you’re hiking around this time. It was chilly enough to need a beanie/jacket when I stopped, but my long loose T-shirt was quite hot while moving. The golden foliage was gorgeous. The lake itself was reflective and relaxing, despite the handful of people in and out. Be careful if you let your kids or dogs swim in it, it’s VERY cold. I had to spend some time warming my dog back up after one jump in, and my own fingers didn’t want to bend for a while after dipping them in. The water made for an easy filter though to refill my camelbak. Plenty of trees for hammock hanging. Wear sunscreen. I didn’t encounter many bugs. I maintained my AT&T LTE for the first 3/4 of the trail.

hiking
7 months ago

Trail is well maintained. Flowing water at various spots along the trail is a nice bonus to splash some on your face. Once at the lake, taking a swim is an awesome way to cool down. Then sunbathe to warm up and have some lunch.

hiking
7 months ago

Great hike. All uphill until you get to the lone pine lake with many switchbacks but views are so worth it! the lake is gorgeous and views up to the lake are amazing!

hiking
8 months ago

I thoroughly enjoyed this hike. I’m in good shape for 66+ .and grandmother. I so enjoyed the beauty of the hike really breathtaking. I hiked to June Lake. alone, enjoying a retreat from all things except my spiritual path, feet in hiking shoes, feet on the ground, breathing in the sublime air. The fish were jumping, I sat on a boulder in awe, I felt completely safe, everyone smiles and friendly. Great conditions on the trail, pristine, nice to see that, though well traveled the trail was also well respected.

hiking
8 months ago

Beautiful hike, great trail condition, may be hard if you come straight from sea level. Just go slow. Lots of water still flowing along parts of trail but nothing you really get wet from.

hiking
9 months ago

Its a beautiful lake and trail in betty good condition , is a 6.2 mills hike no 5.1 mills

Great hike Amazing views. The lake was gorgeous. Start early and take it slow.

hiking
9 months ago

Easy enough terrain-wise. Having just flown in from the Midwest the altitude nailed me at about 9,400. But a bit to eat and I was good to go. The lake is awesome.

This is a nice trail. It is closer to 3 miles to get to Pine lake but definitely worth the walk.

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