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#2093 - 02/06/10 08:09 AM Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Pretty soon you will get your permit reservation package...don't sweat it, it's coming.

As you prepare for your date with the Smithsonian Hut, you are going be making a lot of mistakes. It really comes with never having hiked at these elevations, this distance or gain.

After my first trip in 1997, I came to the conclusion I did not work anywhere near hard enough getting ready and the Sierra should have been a part of my training program with a side trip to Whitney Portal to get the lay of the land...I've since revised that to the "easy" 14,246' White Mountain.

Many of you will end up with permits when winter conditions still exist but without the requisite skills or equipment. I've always recommended to those people...come and enjoy yourself, you will have a good time here and gain a lot of experience but remember never hike through trouble. It's a lot harder to descend through ice and snow than it is to climb through it. I have literally seen someone on hands and knees down hiking a trail after they went a switchback too far.

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#2103 - 02/06/10 02:15 PM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: wbtravis]
Rod Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 660
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca. USA
wbtravis you are spot on.I remember how many mistakes I made my first time up MW.The biggest one was underestimating the mountain.The altitude and the amount of time it would take me RT were the 2 biggest mistakes which led to a miriad of compounding mistakes.These caused me to not be prepared to come down in darkness(left my headlamp at base camp) and the potential of spending the night without adequate shelter or warm clothing.It worked out because my buddy was prepared because of what I had told him to bring.I just didn't follow my own advice and bring my headlamp. duh
Winter is going to last a long time high up in the Sierras this year.


Edited by Rod (02/06/10 02:16 PM)

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#2107 - 02/06/10 03:41 PM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: Rod]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7583
Loc: Fresno, CA
Thanks for that, wbtravis. I hope lots of people will sign up and ask questions and discuss their plans.

And allow me to direct people to the "Orientation Notes for Whitney first timers", (link is above on the left) a great compilation of people's experiences climbing Mt. Whitney.

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#2117 - 02/07/10 09:32 AM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: Rod]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Rod,

That first time, I headed up the trail in 1997 knowing everything I needed to know...that changed by the time we reached the North Fork. I told wifey we'd be back by 6 PM. I was only off by 3 hours.

Wifey being wifey, she stationed herself at the old Patio coverless trailhead and asked all the "I ain't going to do this damn thing, again" hikers did you see...for 2 hours and fifty nine minutes. laugh

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#2119 - 02/07/10 09:39 AM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: Steve C]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Steve,

The reason for the post is for the sages here to relate their own not so sage happening so the newbies don't become a part of the "Whitney Follies", newspaper or 11 PM, 10 PM CST, news...you know stories that seem to get repeated anytime you get close to the fish pond...there was this woman who asked me at Trail Crest, which way is the summit?


Edited by wbtravis (02/07/10 09:44 AM)

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#2132 - 02/07/10 03:24 PM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: wbtravis]
Rod Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 660
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca. USA
wbtravis.
Yeah I knew what I needed. I brought everything I needed to base camp.I just didn't realize how long RT from Outpost to summit would take. I certainly never considered it would take me 15 hours and come down in the dark. Otherwise I would have bought some form of light like the led flashlight and headlamp.They didn't work very well buried deep in my base camp BP.
I have since learned to pre-pack my day pack minus the food.That way when you wake up foggy from a fitful and mostly sleepless night groggy you don't have to think about what you need for the summit attempt.

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#2136 - 02/07/10 05:36 PM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: wbtravis]
hikehigh Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 28
Loc: 20.12345 -101.12345
Originally Posted By: wbtravis

Many of you will end up with permits when winter conditions still exist but without the requisite skills or equipment.


This maybe especially true this year. Its looking like a big snow year. There may be significant snow to deal with well into summer this year. Only time will tell......
_________________________
Day Hiking Mt. Whitney

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#2160 - 02/08/10 10:07 AM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: Rod]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Rod,

You made me chuckle. The first trip up the mountain I took a flashlight...a 4 - "D" Cell Snake Light by Black and Decker. Ah, the bad old days...and I was too tired pull it out for the last 3 miles...I just stayed right behind kiddie and kicked a lot of rocks.

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#2185 - 02/08/10 10:00 PM Re: Advice to the Newbies...The Day Hike Edition [Re: wbtravis]
Rod Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 660
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca. USA
wbtravis
In retospect me and my buddy still laugh about when he pulled out his headlamp and asked where mine was. I told him in my BP at basecamp.He said you were the one who told me to bring mine.All i could do was shrug my shoulders and say don't get too far in fron of me. We were between TC and trailside meadows. Completely dark on a moonless night.Of all places to be short of light with all the granite rocky trail that is hard to follow in sections during the daylight down to outpost.One led headlamp for two on a granite mountain section.Lessons learned though.

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