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#11841 - 03/21/11 04:30 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: Steve C]
ddmansprty Offline


Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 14
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca
Wow... I don't like the trend I am seeing....

No CC hit or letter. I guess right now that's a good thing.

Good luck to those that haven't heard anything yet. So far I received my permit on my first try 4 years ago and nothing since.
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#11846 - 03/21/11 05:18 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011--nothing for me so far [Re: quillansculpture]
Bulldog34 Offline


Registered: 11/12/09
Posts: 1254
Loc: Atlanta
Joe (and everyone else wringing their hands about a cc hit, notification or rejection), even though I have to travel 2000 miles to play on Whitney, and even though I've only hit the lottery once in five years of trying, I've moved pretty strongly into the Steve C mode of thinking regarding permits.

In other words, NO WORRIES. Here's why:

During the Whitney high-demand season of July, August and September, there are 92 possible days to snag a permit. In 2010, how many of those 92 days would you guess that there were ultimately no permits available for people that wanted them?

The answer is a grand total of 4. Let me say that again - 4. That's 4 days out of 92 that someone might have walked up to the Inter-Agency center in Lone Pine seeking either/or permits - a dayhike permit for the next day or an overnight permit for the same day - and walked away without one. And, predictably, all four of those days were Saturdays (1 in July, 2 in August, 1 in September).

Now, if you break that down into "I must have an overnight permit", the numbers go up a bit - to 15 out of 92 days. However, if you're willing to take what's available between dayhike and overnight combined, the number is just 4 days that you would have left empty-handed. Another tasty number-crunching factoid: No one was turned away for either permit on Wednesday last year, except for the one Wednesday in mid-July in the middle of the Badwater Ultra-Marathon - day permits were exhausted, but overnight permits were available. In fact it was the next day, Thursday, that Joe and I went up Whitney on an overnight permit I snagged from calling for cancellations just two days prior - during Badwater!

Another 2010 factoid: there were never two conscutive weekdays during the summer when permits of either type were unavailable, and only rarely 2 consecutive weekend days.

The lesson? Chill about the lottery. Yeah, I know it's nice being certain, and having your permit letter in hand before you make your plans, but history shows that if you simply head to Lone Pine in the summer and (1) have a little bit of flexibility, and (2) try to avoid weekends, you will almost certainly snag that permit to climb Whitney.

So folks, do not tank all your plans and walk away because you don't get a lottery permit - big mistake! Use a little smarts in organizing your trip and a permit will be there in Lone Pine waiting for you.

If you want to investigate the numbers yourself, the details are here .


Edited by Bulldog34 (03/21/11 05:40 PM)
Edit Reason: Added 2010 Permit link

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#11851 - 03/21/11 05:30 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: Steve C]
ddmansprty Offline


Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 14
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca
That's good advice. I was already hoping for a walk up permit for the three days I am staying in the area after labor day weekend. I was hoping for two trips this year. I guess my odds would certainly be better if I already planned multiple trips.

I guess instead of summit fever I have permit fever...
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#11880 - 03/21/11 08:15 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011--nothing for me so far [Re: Bulldog34]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 552
Loc: Murrieta, CA
I know that Gary..... and you are absolutely correct on all points. And, I've walked in a couple of times. But really, do I actually enter the lottery to get a permit to hike Whitney? I mean, it's $15.00 each for a permit. It's free if you do a walk in. No, I actually enter because I just want to WIN something!!!!!!

See ya in July..............
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#11896 - 03/22/11 03:48 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: ddmansprty]
iteach4th Offline


Registered: 03/17/11
Posts: 19
Loc: iteach4th
Wow, so many rejection notices and only 1 person with a reservation! Any other reservations??? I haven't heard a thing and have expressed my OCD by checking my credit card 2 times a day since February 16. I think you guys are right... walk up is the way to go. However, I too would like to feel like I have won something now that I'm this deep in the lottery process, hahaha. What will today bring????

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#11909 - 03/22/11 07:53 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: iteach4th]
CaT Offline


Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 694
Loc: Blacklick, OH (formerly SoCal)
I normally do walk-up any more when we're out in California (eve though we're coming from Ohio), and we've never been denied. But this year, I'm taking anywhere from 1-3 friends from Ohio along, and they are more likely to want the guarantee of a reserved permit before committing to air fare, etc., since our whole trip out there is to do Mt. Whitney (and Yosemite on the way in from San Fran).

Nonetheless, the trend does not seem to be heading in the most favorable direction so far, even for those who got theirs in early and requested midweek, etc., which is exactly what I did. Time will tell.

CaT
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#11912 - 03/22/11 08:47 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: CaT]
Pikester Offline


Registered: 03/22/11
Posts: 1
Loc: CA
I have an eager 15 year old from Toronto that wants to be sure that we're doing this, this summer.

So, to those of you that have done the walk-up, have you done a group or just single? We'd have a minimum of three in our group and I'm wondering if that would be more difficult to snag.

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#11914 - 03/22/11 08:57 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: Pikester]
Akichow Offline


Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 659
Loc: SF Bay Area
I did a walk up on a Friday in mid-July last year for an overnight permit. About 10 overnight permits were available, and I was the 11th so it looked like I would miss out. Then someone gave up a permit, so I was golden.

When you do the walk up, they basically do a mini lottery that morning. So, if you were the first to be picked on the day I showed up, and you needed 10 permits, you would have gotten all of them (and everyone else would have been out of luck). Obviously, the fewer permits you need, the more likely you will be able to get all the permits you need....

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#11925 - 03/22/11 10:52 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: Pikester]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 552
Loc: Murrieta, CA
And don't forget, there is the secondary lottery you can enter for dates that weren't chosen, and/or full. That's how I got 5 reservations for the day after Labor Day.
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#11932 - 03/22/11 11:47 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: quillansculpture]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
> ...there is the secondary lottery you can enter...

Joe, can you explain? I'm not sure what you are referring to.

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#11947 - 03/22/11 02:50 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: iteach4th]
whitneywannab Offline


Registered: 03/19/11
Posts: 2
Loc: mn, usa
Hi Iteach4th,

Add me to the list of REJECTS! but not to worry, where there is a will, there is a way....and I'm thinking we have lots of WILL baby!

MB

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#11952 - 03/22/11 03:34 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: whitneywannab]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Since they didn't need to run a credit card or cash a check, they probably sent all the reject notices out first.

So no info is a good thing!

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#11957 - 03/22/11 04:42 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: whitneywannab]
iteach4th Offline


Registered: 03/17/11
Posts: 19
Loc: iteach4th
I'm a whitneywannab too and I'm sorry to hear you didn't get a spot! I still haven't heard and have check my c.c. a few times today.... and nothing in the mail either. I'm hoping no news is good news. You are very right about WILL... even if I get rejected I plan to make it up there. I have the entire summer off and will figure it out. Good luck to you!

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#11960 - 03/22/11 05:37 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: Steve C]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 552
Loc: Murrieta, CA
On the second page of your rejection letter, there are dates where you can apply for "leftover dates", dates that were not chosen previously. If I remember correctly, you send in another form with the dates you would like and if there is space available, you get the date. If someone chose before you, you don't. That's how I got my Labor Day date a couple of years back. I am guessing it's first come first served, not lottery style, but you still have to get some luck.
There should be some nice dates available, but we won't know until we see the calendars (after April 1st) with available dates.
_________________________
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twitter: @josephquillan

If less is more, imagine how much more, more is -Frasier

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#11961 - 03/22/11 05:46 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011--nothing for me so far [Re: Bulldog34]
jbrooks Offline


Registered: 03/22/11
Posts: 1
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: Bulldog34
The lesson? Chill about the lottery. Yeah, I know it's nice being certain, and having your permit letter in hand before you make your plans, but history shows that if you simply head to Lone Pine in the summer and (1) have a little bit of flexibility, and (2) try to avoid weekends, you will almost certainly snag that permit to climb Whitney.

So folks, do not tank all your plans and walk away because you don't get a lottery permit - big mistake! Use a little smarts in organizing your trip and a permit will be there in Lone Pine waiting for you.

If you want to investigate the numbers yourself, the details are here .


This strategy is not without its risks. I was in a group of 4 that showed up the 2nd to last weekend in August 2009 on a Thursday. No permits available. We stayed for Friday. Permits were available, we were first in line as the doors opened, but the office ran a mini-lottery for the 10 or 15 people in line (although not everyone wanted overnight Whitney permits). We drew #3, but the guy that drew #2 grabbed the last 4 for his group. Nothing looked available for Saturday.

On the topic of 2011 permits. We received out rejection today. Our application list of dates was quite long. With the last line being 5 permits for any Thursday or Friday in July, August, or September.


Edited by jbrooks (03/22/11 05:54 PM)

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#11964 - 03/22/11 06:28 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011--nothing for me so far [Re: jbrooks]
Bulldog34 Offline


Registered: 11/12/09
Posts: 1254
Loc: Atlanta
jbrooks, sorry to hear you got the TBNT. Most of us seem to. Re the recommendations I was making to go ahead and try for cancellations or walk-ins rather than abandon plans altogether, my two caveats were (1) be flexibile and (2) avoid weekend start days (Friday/Saturday, primarily). Clearly, some folks can only do Whitney over an extended weekend. In that case, I think trying for a Sunday or Monday permit would be the way to go if at all possible.

The odds are in your favor, but it's still a gamble. The House will occassionally win, but not often. You're correct that the strategy has risks - but if you fail in the lottery, it's your only strategy.

I strongly recommend not waiting to walk in to make your efforts. About two weeks out from your planned target date, begin calling the Bishop Inyo NFS office (not the Lone Pine IA Center) twice a day, asking about cancellations to re-reserve. Some courteous people will cancel their permits when they see they will not make the trip, rather than just no-show since the reservation is nob-refundable. This typically happans within a two-week window of their permit date, and peaks within 3-5 days of permit date. Calling twice a day gives you latitude to take advantage of cancellations they may receive at different times of the day. You call at 9:00 a.m. looking for a July 15 permit. No go. Joe Blow calls later in the day and cancels 3 permits for July 15. If you don't call again before the end of the day, someone else will almost certainly get those permits.

Yes, you have to pay a reservation fee this way, rather than getting them free as a walk-in, but if having permits guaranteed is important to you, $15 ain't much. I got two that way last July. I also walked in in August of '09 and picked up a day permit.

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#11975 - 03/22/11 11:33 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011--nothing for me so far [Re: jbrooks]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Originally Posted By: jbrooks
This strategy is not without its risks. I was in a group of 4 that showed up the 2nd to last weekend in August 2009 on a Thursday. No permits available. We stayed for Friday. Permits were available, we were first in line as the doors opened, but the office ran a mini-lottery for the 10 or 15 people in line (although not everyone wanted overnight Whitney permits). We drew #3, but the guy that drew #2 grabbed the last 4 for his group. Nothing looked available for Saturday.


jbrooks, that's too bad. Looking at the Unused Whitney Permits 2009 info, I can see that weekend was completely full for overnighters. There were plenty of dayhike permits left though. If you had only tried Monday or Tuesday of that week or the following, you would have hiked.

In most weeks during the summer, in the overnight permits, there is space left. (Unfortunately, as more and more people learn this, there will be fewer of those days.)

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#11980 - 03/23/11 05:35 AM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011--nothing for me so far [Re: Steve C]
kurt765 Offline


Registered: 03/23/11
Posts: 38
Loc: Santa Monica
Is the volume up this year compared to last? Looking at the March 9th status update, it seems like that's a huge amount of requests and a huge amount of unsuccessful applications. I seem to recall stats from 2010 being much more forgiving already, but I can't find the stats I'm referring to.

When people request groups, are there lots of 15-person requests that fill things up quickly? Just curious.

-K
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#11995 - 03/23/11 03:04 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: passion2explore]
NJ hiker Offline


Registered: 02/18/11
Posts: 74
Loc: Northern NJ
Hi Passion2explore. Yes, NJ is 'New Jersey' for those who don't live the 'Jersey Shore ' lifestyle (I have been told the actors and actresses on that show are from Staten Island, lol). Yup DE is a lovely little flatland state, just over the bridge at Trenton. And ya gotta love those taxes on shopping --NOT!
So I am in the 'no CC hit but no letter' so I am expecting my rejection at this point. I see from the list that others more mighty than us have been rejected!

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#11996 - 03/23/11 03:13 PM Re: Whitney Lottery Progress 2011 [Re: ddmansprty]
NJ hiker Offline


Registered: 02/18/11
Posts: 74
Loc: Northern NJ

You said:
"I guess instead of summit fever I have permit fever..."

LOL that is so true!You made my evening with that thought. Thanks for putting it in perspective! smile

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