So we are in the final stretch!!! We are planning on driving up to Lone Pine Wednesday morning/afternoon, and then getting to bed early and starting our day hike to the summit at 3 am Thursday morning. However, I had a few questions...
We were originally planning on sleeping in a motel in Lone Pine and then heading up early, but I don't know how I missed this, but the elevation is very low in Lone Pine. Oiy! So now the plan is just to sleep in the car at the Portal or even just on the ground. Would anyone suggest making the small hike to Lone Pine Lake and camping there? It would be a good acclimation point as well as have us on our way, and I've heard getting the general wilderness pass to get there is not difficult. However, we don't really want to carry a huge tent or bear canisters or such all the way to the summit for a day hike. Suggestions?
Also, two of our party (originally 4) have dropped out, so we have 2 extra passes if anyone wants to join us. Otherwise, we'll just leave them for the hikers who show up day-of.
Finally, I even feel slightly silly asking this, but I promised in order to satisfy the worries of over-protective parents and a worried spouse. Has anyone ever brought up a little 5 lb canister of oxygen before in case of altitude sickness, to be able to collect oneself, and then head back down (obviously). I wanted to know if this was a good safety idea or just unnecessary extra weight.
Thanks for all the help so far and I will definitely post pictures and a report when we return!