Explore the most popular camping trails near Lone Pine with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

I did this hike on September 19th 2018. started at 4:35 am and reached the peak at noon. It's an extremely beautiful hike with lots of streams down lower and several lakes! this is one you must train for and try your luck with the lottery!

hiking
3 days ago

The best hike ever. Very hard. And I if you think San Gorgonio is hard then you shouldn't go to Mt Whitney. I had an early start at 2am end up on summit at 9am. Clear sky a little windy but doable. Sunrise was amazing.Train for this hike,plan it smart.Be ready. Good luck.

Great trail. Went to Trail Camp. No summit due to high winds. This map appears to be wrong, though, as there is no identifiable trail to consultation lake where it shows one. Not sure how one would ever get to the lake from where this map shows

hiking
7 days ago

Summit date: 9/11/18 - Due to a compressed timeline, I opted to hike from the Cottonwood Lakes Trail Head, and summit Mt. Langley in one day via the New Army Pass Trail. This is approx. a 26 mile day! I started my recording about 3 miles into my hike. Looking back, I would recommend making this a 2 to 3 day hike. With over 4000’ of elevation climb, I was definitely exhausted by the end of the day.

For Sep, the weather was PERFECT! After climbing switchbacks up to the crest of New Army Pass, you get wonderful views of Mount Langley. There is about a 500’ descent in the saddle before a 2500’ ascent to the summit. Be aware - following the defined New Army Pass trail down will take you toward Soldier Lake and away from the Mount Langley summit trail. I had to backtrack, which set me back about 45 mins.

The challenging portion is the last 800’ or so to the summit. I recommend following the cairn trail for the safest ascent to the top. I had to scramble for the first 20 to 30’, which made me second guess about my decision to continue to the top, but after that, the ascent was mostly loose sand in between boulders. After the last cairn, the terrain becomes gradual with the summit in clear view.

Hiked on 7 Sep. Started at Trailhead at 3:05 AM. Finished at Trailhead 7:55 PM. Weather: Low of 45, high of 60, sunny and very little wind (perfect)

Training: I live in Kansas so training at altitude is a bit problematic. I hiked a bit at RMNP a few months before to get a feel for altitude. Other than that I would hike locally but nothing over 10 miles. I used the stair master (3x week) for up to an hour and squatted (2-3x week). I got a pretty bad head cold two weeks out and shut down my training to get fully healed as a headcold at altitude could suck. My group went fairly slowly and I felt fully conditioned. A bit of soreness in my calves the next day but none in my quads or hammies.

Prep: We arrived two days prior and camped at Horseshoe Meadows two nights before. There was plenty of sites available and it helped us get used to altitude. The night before we camped at the trailhead. Again plenty of space in the walk up campground. Parking was tight but as the afternoon wore on and people came off of the mountain there was plenty. The store has any last minute things you need.

Actual Hike: Our group of five hit the trail at 3:05 AM. We took the old trailhead (located at the really big boulder on the far side of the parking lot road past the store). My pack (including poles, water and food) weighed in at 17lbs. Things were easy and we hit trail camp a bit after sunup. We refilled on water here. At trail crest we took a snack break and reached the summit about 11:30. We stayed for an hour. Some of the group was gassed from the way up and we traveled pretty slowly back down arriving back at the trailhead a bit before 8 PM. That means we had to finish by headlamp which was a bit off putting. Overall the trail was very easy to follow, between trail crest and the summit there are some rocky pieces but nothing that you can call scrambling. For hydration I used a 100 oz bladder and actually finished it between trail head and trail camp.

Equipment: Shoes- Garmont approach shoes, they performed like champs and provided great
traction on the rocky sections. Pack- Granite gear Leopard 46. Lightweight and performed as advertised. It was bigger than I needed but since I had to fly in it was my bag on the plane. Clothes- Silky poly pro top as base layer. Due to the warmth/lack of wind it was my only layer almost the entire time. It wicked the sweat well and I felt dry and comfortable. For my bottom layer I wore Prana stretch Zion pants and they were great as always . All the other clothes stayed in the pack. For navigation I used a paper map (1:64k) and a Garmin foretrex 301. The Garmin is old and you can't download maps to it so it sucked for establishing time/distance to travel due to all the switchbacks. As a work around I tracked elevation as my metric which allowed me to compare my real time elevation with upcoming landmarks.

What I would do differently next time: 1) Think out a better water resupply plan/method. Our group (5 people) had one filter. We filled at trail camp both coming and going and to fill five camel backs, put them back in the pack etc. took 30 minutes each time. 2) Rig my camelback on a side pouch on my pack. I saw someone near the end of the hike with that and saw how I could reduce the five minute process of installing and removing the camelback from the inside of my pack to a 30 second process. 3) Not bring poles. This is YMMV, but I am not used to poles and feel I have greater balance and mobility without them on the rocky portions. I dabbled with them on the way down starting at the switchbacks but gave them away to someone we came across who had twisted their ankle. My knees and legs felt fine both on the trail and the next day. Probably if I watch a youtube on how to use them and practice my attitude towards them will change.

Overall a great experience.

hiking
10 days ago

I did Mount Langley as a two-day hike. (I can't imagine doing it as a one-day without serious conditioning.) My route was a little different from the one on this page, though.

I began at Horse Meadow, taking the Cottonwood Lakes Trail to the New Army Pass Trail. I then camped at Long Lake. The following day, I continued on the New Army Pass Trail, linking up with the Army Pass Trial via a short connector route shown on this map. I then took the Army Pass Trail to the final approach, in which I took the western-most route as shown on this map.

Next time, I'm going to take the Army Pass Trail (as shown on this page), as it's shorter and has less elevation gain than the New Army Pass Trail. Apparently, snow lingers longer on the Army Pass Trail, though, so check the conditions.

Tips:

- Bring a GPS device. There are a couple places where the trail is hard to follow and splits up.
- Pack light when you summit. Bring the bare minimum: water, first-aid kit, navigation device, jacket, etc.
- Turn back if you don't feel good. Don't risk your life to make the summit.
- There is plenty of water from Horseshoe Meadow to High Lake (just east of Long Lake). I didn't see any water from there to the summit, though.

Everyone has said it all but an awesome hike, awesome place to camp and incredibly beautiful scenery everywhere along the way!

hiking
12 days ago

Great!

Wonderful hike, but it’s a beast for sure. Train train train.
Do NOT trust your phone GPS to mark your point by point goals. My GPS read 10 miles while we were still on the switchbacks, which is inaccurate. This app recorded my whole hike as being 26 miles total instead of the generally accepted 22. This does get frustrating.
Overall a once in a lifetime hike for sure.

hiked on September 2nd in one day. we started at 4.30 am, headed the top at 11.15 am, stayed 1h on the top and then finished it at 5.30 pm. It took us 13h with the stop and we were going pretty fast!
You feel the elevation! We didn't acclimated as we had a one day permit but we took some hybropruphen! however, we went through headache and nausea! This hike requires not only a good physical training but also a strong mind control!

Long hard walk uphill for hours in beautiful landscape w beautiful souls. Criticized for high traffic but for me that’s how I made it out. Thx Kim and mike.

Loved it. Nice easy day trip or overnight.

backpacking
16 days ago

We went in early June. The meadows were green and the lakes were gorgeous. There are plenty of good camping spots around the lakes. The hike cuts through various types of alpine scenery and is capped off by a killer view of New Army Pass.

What a mountain! What a hike!
Did the 1 day up and back from Whitney Portal, 15 hours round trip. 8.5 up, at an easy pace. 30min at the summit. 6 hours down at a quicker pace.

-Overview and Info (If you’re interested)-

2 days before- camped at Horseshoe Meadow (at over 10k elevation) to acclimate. The next morning we did a warm up hike which ended up being way more than I intended, over 7 miles total.
Afternoon/night before- Camped at portal at the walk-up, 1 night campground. Ate big chili and pasta dinner at about 6pm and was in bed by 7:30. Didn’t sleep much.
Got up at 2am and broke camp, hiking packs were already to go. Ended up starting at the same time as a couple other groups so there was a couple dozen of us on the trail at the same time, which was kinda fun. Got to Trail Camp just after sunrise and that was a sorta magical sight to see- the community of backpackers up there just arising and having coffee/breakfast next to the lake (where we stopped to filter some water), under the peaks of Mt Muir and Whitney...Beautiful! Then it’s the “99 switchbacks”. Getting to the top was very rewarding in that it’s a massive incline/ elevation gain and workout, but also getting to trail crest at the top where you finally get to the views west into the Sierras was amazing! Knowing there’s less than 2 miles to the summit and how much you’ve already endured, you press on. The journey becomes even more challenging from here, the trail gets very rocky, the fatigue and effects of altitude started to kick in. By about 14k feet, I got pretty light headed, feeling like I was somewhere between fainting and dreaming at moments- (which was actually a kinda cool natural high). Again, a slow and easy pace with as many stops as needed, worked. Getting to the summit was a triumph!
But as it’s said, once you hit the summit, you’re only halfway there! You still have to make it all the way back down. I was concerned about what energy I had left to make it another 11 miles, but going down is easier (although there are a few places where you have incline on the trail back- which sucked). By the time we got back to Trail camp I had drank over 4 liters of water, emptying my “bladder”. We filtered a little more water there, enough to keep moving, knowing there were a few more sources to refill along the way back. Getting to see all the spots that we passed in the dark on the way up was a treat. It’s beautiful up there! The scenic beauty was one of the most inspiring parts of the whole hike, which kept me motivated to keep going.

Overall I carried and consumed quite a bit: about 6 bars (cliff bars, macro bars, etc), a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, some almonds and banana chips, 1 apple, 1 orange and 1 banana, plus some sodium/electrolyte/energy gels and some similar powders I added to my water bottle occasionally. Also I popped a Ibuprofen at about 13.5k ft. (and another at the bottom end). I had a 4 liter water bag and a 16oz bottle, which I drank from on the trail. I think I consumed a little more water (and calories) then average for the hike, but I got almost no sleep the 2 nights before and needed to give my body every thing I could to keep pumping. And it worked!

Training helps of course, physically and mentally.
Keep a positive, productive attitude, take one step at a time. You’ll get there.

Completed 8/31 and it was a highlight of my hiking adventures. Stayed at Trail Camp, got the headache but nothing worse than that. It was easier than I had expected and read about. I am 47, smoker and about 20 pounds over weight and I flew up the switchbacks. I actually thought the first 6 miles to Trail Camp was harder than the 4.5 to summit. My biggest suggestion for the switchbacks and summit part, is leave before light, put your headlamp on, and some earphones and it seems block out how far it is to the top. Also no matter what the weather is at Trail Camp it is colder and more windy. I used a total of 2 liters of water up and down from Trail Camp to Summit and back to Trail Camp. I read reviews of people carrying 5 liters, so I did only to empty it on the way down. Also I ate about 500 calories before I started and only had about a 200 calorie snack on the way down. The thing that helped me the most was a 5 hour energy drink before starting and another at the summit. I cannot wait to do this again and beat my personal best time. Also, Trail Camp had about 5 other tents set up Thursday the 30th of August, was not busy at all. The summit had more people, most of which came from the West side. Good Luck to all and enjoy!

hiking
22 days ago

Great hike. It was cold at the top and I was happy to have gloves, running tights, and a down puffer jacket to put on at the summit. Training definitely made a difference by doing longer hikes to peaks around where I live. This should be a bucket list hike for any serious hiker.

Epic adventure! 15 hours. Started at Whitney Portal trailhead at 4:30a, finished at 7:36p. We are in very good cardiovascular shape, I’m a runner and hiker, my husband is a cyclist and hiker and sometime runner. I am also moderately afraid of heights. My first hike ever was Mt. Baldy (10,068 elevation) and I had huge shortness of breath but summited, that was 10 years ago! I started running and as an added benefit, Mt. Baldy was easy the second time (2 years ago and 8 years older at that time). I am 53 and my husband is 48 to give you an idea of age. All that being said, we saw a few hikers taking 1 inch steps around Trail Camp (12,000 ft), pretty sure they didn’t make it to the summit. On the flip side, the day before we hiked Whitney we spoke to a young man who RAN to the summit; he started at 4:00a and finished at 11:00a.
Here’s what we did for this hike; camped 2 nights at Whitney Portal campground before the hike. Drove up to do a short hike the day before the hike at Cottonwood Lake area at just over 10,000 ft. Ate a good dinner but not real heavy, took 500mg Naprosyn each. Went to bed at 8:00p, up at 3:00a, coffee, food, 500mg Naprosyn again etc., had to jockey our small motorhome up to the trailhead area to avoid running the generator in a sleepy campground and not add one extra mile to the hike :) We hit the trail at 4:30a.
Take it at a comfortable pace because pacers win the day! We used exactly 3L of water each, ate 2 sandwiches each, Clif bar each, some trail mix, squeeze fruit, 1 GU, 3 gels, and shared an oatmeal/fruit squeeze. There are water sources on the way but it is sunny and exposed most of the way so bring UV radiation protection. The weather was awesome this day (Aug 27, 2018), no wind at the time we summited, no clouds, no thunderstorms. But remember you’re only half done when you summit! Another bonus was there were no mosquitoes, I was shocked. I brought a first aid kit, complete with sutures, ACE wrap, Naprosyn, bandages, etc. I gave out some Naprosyn to a guy who was suffering with AMS on the way up but didn’t see him again.
My advice is to listen to wilderness experts and hydrate, take NSAIDs, and pay attention to your body. Headache, nausea, dizziness, uncoordinated movements, extremity swelling are all signs of AMS. At the FIRST sign of headache, stop and see if you recover, if not, DESCEND. It’s not worth your life to get to the top.

29 days ago

Went up and down via NAP, which made for a very long day hike of 26 miles. This was such a beautiful route. Loved spending time at the lakes. First of many in the Sierras.

What an amazing accomplishment. we summited whitney June of last year. after a big snow season, the switchback were still not open (completely covered in snow) Had to out on spikes and climb straight up 2,000 ft. Met two gentleman on the summit which were doing the PCT. It was only us 4 up there that early. Coming down the scree was so fun. Glissading down 2,000 was a blast. Not so much for my fiance as she was yelling at me in fear. All in all, not bad at all. as a day hike it would kick anyone's ass, backpacking and staying at trail Camp, the hike was not too bad. Until you come back to your car and your car battery is dead.

Hiked on Aug. 16, 2018.
TIPS/COMMENTS
(I won't go over food or water here since so many reviewers have already stressed the importance of both).
Training: I live in SoCal so I was able to hike at higher elevation about once a week (sometimes twice). I don’t think that I ever got higher than 11,000’ though. If you can, do it. I ran 10 miles/week too. I tried to break it up into three days of high intensity running.

Amazing hike! Absolutely beautiful! Next time, I want to backpack!
Favorite part: Going up the 99 switchbacks as the sun started to rise. Least favorite part: the section from Trail Crest to End of Pinnacles. This part is technical. Lots of slippery rocks.

Definitely rid your vehicle of anything scented. I saw a bear at the trailhead right by a parked car.

Leaving at 12:15 AM was worth it. The night sky was special and it remained dark until the 99 switchbacks. The darkness actually made time go by very fast.

I noted on my map the time it would take us to get from point to point according to a 9 hour ascent time and an 11 hour ascent time. This was so HELPFUL and MOTIVATING. For example, on my map I noted that the segment from Whitney Portal to North Fork Lone Pine Creek should take 30-35 min. Which meant that arrival time should have been between 12:45-12:50 AM. I highly recommend doing this. Breaking this hike into small goals worked!

If you're hiking in the dark like we did, don't wait to fill up on water until Trail Camp. The water isn't easy to find in the dark. Instead, fill up beforehand. Also, just know that the water is cold and your hands will probably get wet.

Finding some privacy to pee wasn't as hard as I thought it would be.

I would recommend wearing pants. At times, I needed all warm layers: long-sleeve, fleece, hat, gloves, etc.

Changing into a fresh pair of socks at the summit felt great.

I popped 600 mg. of ibuprofen at the start of the hike. I heard that it can help to alleviate elevation sickness. As for elevation sickness, I was perfectly fine until I started to descend. Maybe I should have popped more ibuprofen on the way down. I think I might have stayed at the top for too long ( 1 hour and 40 minutes). I got a headache and a tiny bit of nausea that made descending for the first few hours suck. I had to get well past Trail Camp before I started to feel better.

In hindsight, a pack cover wouldn't have been a bad idea. While descending, I got caught in a thunderstorm just after Trail Camp that drenched my pack.

Enjoy the descent. It is going to feel endless, so might as well slow down a bit and take in the fresh mountain air.

hiking
1 month ago

We started at the portal at 11:15 pm on 8/15/18 and reached the permit zone around 12:30 am on 8/16/18. Daylight broke through near the end of the 99 switchbacks. I left my backpack at the trail crest and worked our way to the summit. We reached the summit around 7:45 am. It was beautiful! After 15-20 minutes we decided to head down because it was fairly cold and we wanted to avoid the daily thunderstorms. Since we did the switchbacks in the dark on the ascent the return was very enjoyable - wonderful views. The next four plus miles after the switchbacks although beautiful seemed endless. We finally reached Lone Pine Lake and were down to our final 2.8 miles. Running on fumes we finally reached the portal at 2:45 pm. It took us roughly 15 1/2 hours but it was worth it! After eight months of training we conquered Mt Whitney!

Recommendations: Start early (reach Lone Pine Lake by midnight), don't over-pack (we had too much food & water), take it slow & steady, bring external battery for phone camera, wear a buff for warmth & sun protection... and HAVE FUN!

backpacking
1 month ago

Completed the Cottonwood Loop yesterday (8-17-18). The Old Army Pass was a bit scary. Coming down New Army Pass was in much better condition. Breathtaking scenery! The weather was good. Did have some rain, which made the trip even more enjoyable. This trail is a must and will definitely expand our trip in to the Sequoia National Forest on our next trip!

hiking
1 month ago

Great two day trip. I hiked from Horseshoe meadows to the cottonwood lakes. Lake #3 in my opinion is the best place for camp. Beautiful view, high ground to stay dry and shade. Friday morning I started at 7am reaching the summit at 10:30am. I then hiked back to horseshoe meadows arriving at 3pm. Great hike! Old Army pass is the way to go for this summit. Cheers

We hiked this trail july 29- august 1 in the opposite direction. First day was spent at long lake where a lot of people had camped to summit mt langley. Then over new army pass the second day and into rock creek. We camped at rock creek but we should have headed to soldier lake. Oh well. Last night we spend at chicken spring lake before we hiked out the short 4 miles out the last day over cottonwood pass. Not too many mosquitoes and no ice. Great hike! The fires did spoil our views in some parts. Lakes were beautiful.

My wife and I made the climb on July 16th. For most of the hike, we couldn't have asked for better weather.

We began our journey at 2:15am after eating a solid breakfast. It was warm at Portal, about 70 degrees so I ditched my top base layer quickly. We made it to the camp in about 4 hours.

The dreaded 99 switchbacks were tough, but taking frequent breaks and taking deep, slow breaths helped us acclimate. I feel taking our time here is what helped us avoid altitude sickness later on.

We felt amazing when we reached trail crest... That was until we began the last 2 miles until summit. It was brutal. But, at last, around 11:20am we made it to the summit! It was amazing up there, not a cloud in the sky.

We stayed about 15 minutes and then headed back down. This is one of the few hikes I have ever taken where going down is almost as hard as going up. We slowly made our way down. All was good until the last 4 miles... Lightning, thunder, rain, and hail all came out to wish us well at the end of our journey. We made it back at 7pm, wet, tired, and elated.

Remember to eat every hour or so, drink water frequently, and pace yourself. Also, we wore trail runners, which we wouldn't recommend... You feel every rock and pebble by the second half of the hike.

Good luck!

Excellently maintained trail considering the traffic and geographic conditions. As long as you are reasonably fit, you should be able to make it to the summit that has very rewarding views of the vast Sierra landscape.

We completed the hike with an overnight stop at Trail Crest. We camped the night before at the Whitney Portal Campground, which is a very convenient spot as long as you make reservations well in advance ($24/night for our campsite). We started from Whitney Portal at 8 am, but would recommend starting earlier as the trail up to Outpost Camp can be pretty hot in the summer. The trail is a series of switchbacks even before you get to the infamous 97 switchbacks, but on the whole, the grade of the switchbacks is generally gentle. Outpost Camp is in a pretty meadow with easy access to water and a beautiful waterfall, but unfortunately, it is just 3 miles in. If you choose to overnight here, the tradeoff is a much longer hike (~19 miles) the next day and poorer acclimatization.

We hiked up to Trail Camp for our overnight stay, which is about 6-6.5 miles in, and at 12k ft elevation. There is easy access to water, but the pond is sort of scummy, so make sure you have good filtration plus iodine tablets. The benefits of sleeping at trail camp are obvious, but on the flip side, it is pretty crowded and a pretty boring spot.

We started hiking out to the summit at 4 am the next morning, but again, I would highly recommend leaving earlier (3 am?). It helps to get through the mind-numbing 97 switchbacks before sunrise, and an early start will help avoid a lot of traffic. Most of the trail is one person wide, so you will need to constantly stop to let others pass if you start late. Carry more water than you think you need because there is no water beyond Trail Camp. We carried 9 liters between two people and finished the entire supply on the 10 miles out and back from Trail Camp to the Summit. Also, make sure you have ibuprofen. I developed mild symptoms of AMS despite acclimatizing for 2 nights, and the ibuprofen helped immensely!

Amazing experience. Trail conditions were very good and the weather cooperated too.

1 month ago

Summited solo yesterday. Wanted to write this so that everyone can succeed in summiting this thing if they want to! Couple things I noticed. Nutrition is crucial to you having a good day. It doesn’t have to be extremely hard if you have a planned nutrition schedule. This is spoken from experience of doing Ultras and Ironman distances, you need to eat every 30 minutes and consistently sip on liquids, no matter what you feel like.

The majority of people I passed weren’t doing anything until they were tired, and then they’d stop and drink and eat. The rule is, if you’re hungry or thirsty, it’s already too late.

My schedule:
Banana before hitting the trail, and an entire bottle of water
-Every 30 minutes, two cliff shot blocks(the packs have a total of 6)
-Every 90 minutes, skip the shot blocks and have a GU w/caffeine.
-always having a water source available to sip consistently.
-some trail mix right before I hit the switchbacks, still maintaining the gu/blocks schedule.
-trail mix at the summit.
-trail mix after the switchbacks on return.
-on descent, maintain nutrition schedule.

Total for the day, I believe I had 6 packs of cliff shot blocks, and 6 GUs, and about a bag of trail mix, around 2k calories, and most importantly, all easily digestible. A pb&j or turkey sandwich is not! I might have missed a cliff or gu, counted the wrappers when I finished.

WATER
I took 2L up with me, and an empty bottle to hold another L because I didn’t want to carry the unnecessary weight. There are MANY places to fill up, so you will not run out of water with this method. That being said, I would make sure to fill up all 3L before you start the switchbacks because there will be no water after that point, and it’s 8 difficult miles from that point up and back. I chose iodine tablets which made the water process easy and the bag lighter; just remember to plop in two tablets into your L of water and put it back in your bag. It needs about 35 minutes to work. I believe I drank 7 liters on the day, but I should have probably had another.

TRAINING
I’m training for tri’s at the moment, but I believe HIIT cardio workouts(spinning, plyo, etc) will get you a long way. Also, doing some distance running/walking, but I hadn’t done over 16 miles with 3k elevation gain before Whitney, and I felt fine.

ALTITUDE
I think it’s important to get up in the area two nights early. I chose to camp at Horseshoe Meadow(highly recommend!!) the first night because it’s over 10k elevation and I live in Santa Monica, which is at 1:) It’s a great and quiet area with some great hikes to get warmed up like Cottonwood Pass which gets you up over 11k. The second night I camped at Whitney Portal which allowed me to roll out of my tent, pack it up, and get started on the hike. NOTE: bears are very real in his campground. They are not the people eating bears, but they are the bag stealing bears, which almost happened to me right before my hike. Be careful where you leave your food at ALL times. But I felt no AMS symptoms ascending, and had a minimal headache on the descent, but I think it was slight dehydration.

THE HIKE:
I started at 2:45am, and did the trail alone. Others are on the trail too, so you might go for periods of time by yourself, but for the most part you’ll see lights ahead or behind you. I wanted to get to the switchbacks by sunrise. I didn’t really stop much, other than to replace a GU/Block supply for a convenient pocket on the pack. I stopped at the stream just down from the second campsite just before the switchbacks to fill up the water. The switchbacks at dawn were amazing; I think it’s risky to do them in total darkness. I went at a pretty good clip and summited around 8:20 or so and took a 40 minute nap on the summit. Unless you’re trail running, the descent will take longer than 4 hours, and 4 hours is VERY fast. I wasn’t trying to break any speed records and wanted to enjoy the day, but I was also using this as a training workout for other events I’m doing, meaning I kept my HR at a firm 130-140 all of the way up. I think I got down around 1:15pm, so I had about 10 hours of moving time with the nap at the top. I also had plenty in the tank because I followed my nutrition plan very carefully, so if a situation had arrived on the mountain, I would have had the energy to handle It. I recommend getting an early start so you can knock off the 7 miles before the switchbacks in the dark; you’ll see them during the descent anyway!

POST HIKE:
Treat yourself to a Whitney Portal Store burger and a beer. You’ve definitely earned it after 22 miles hiked and over a mile of elevation gain. It’s definitely a bucket list hike, and a 14k peak that is accessible to almost anyone with the right plan. Good luck, and remember, drink your water!!

Awesome bucket list hike with my friends Ben and Zach. Our hike was July 22/23rd 2018. We had done a lot of research and wanted a high chance of success so we slept at the Whitney Portal to acclimate then backpacked up to trail camp and spent an exciting afternoon with heavy hail, lightning, freezing rain, etc. It was definitely extreme weather and we were well prepared so we were able to wait it out and enjoy a gorgeous evening. The views were amazing and the trail is in great shape (better than the local 6 pack of trails in Southern California!). The weather pattern on the mountain had been lightning and hail starting around 1pm each day so we left trail camp around 3am and hit the 99 switchbacks. As many folks have noted, they actually were not that difficult. The sunrise was spectacular as we approached trail crest. The last lag on the backside of the mountain was the most treacherous as it was very icy and made for a slow trek to the summit. We enjoyed the view, had a snack, hydrated and after signing the log we were on trail back down. Our goal was to break camp and get down to the tree line before the lightning and hail started. We were partially successful as we made it about a mile down from trail camp before the lightning and hail started. It was a pretty miserable hiking in the hail, rain, sleet, lightning, with heavy packs on (yes we carried way too much!). Overall a huge success- no one got sick or injured and we all made the summit. It was a bucket list hike that we have wanted to do for a few years so we were all very pleased with the accomplishment!

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