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#36202 - 05/02/14 09:21 AM Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal
Sam Das Offline


Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 41
Loc: California, USA
How is the weather at Lone Pine Campground or Whitney Portal camp ground in late July? I am going up July 22nd and wanted to get a sense on what it will be like at each camp ground. I know Lone Pine Campground is a bit lower than Whitney Portal?

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#36203 - 05/02/14 12:58 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
+ @ti2d Offline


Registered: 10/22/09
Posts: 799
Loc: Oh Cursed, USA
LPCG: Hot! Reserve the eastern side...more trees...get close to the creek.

WPCG: 10-15 degrees cooler.

Caveat: If and when it rains heavily...be careful of potential flash floods in the WPCG area.
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#36205 - 05/02/14 03:02 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: + @ti2d]
Expeditiondan Offline


Registered: 03/24/14
Posts: 17
Loc: California
Lone Pine campground also tends to be very windy, though it is still a nice campground if you can get to the shady side.

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#36208 - 05/02/14 04:30 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
Lance Offline


Registered: 03/25/14
Posts: 6
Loc: San Diego
HOT HOT HOT every time I have been through mid-summer. Been through many times in July and remember Lone Pine / Independence around 100 degrees each time. Was taking a convertible Fairlane from Seattle to San Diego at the end of July one year, had to put the top up with no AC because it was cooler! Prepare for some heat down there, it is the desert. :-)

If Whitney Portal is only 10-15 degrees cooler, that is 85-90? Wow, we are going to be in the same boat. That's hot for us coastal sissies. Guess I better start hiking Woodson in 85 degree heat.


Edited by Lance (05/02/14 04:34 PM)
Edit Reason: extra info

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#36214 - 05/02/14 08:37 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Lance]
Sam Das Offline


Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 41
Loc: California, USA
So is that mean I will be hiking in 80-90 degrees whether up to Trail Camp? I'm I better off to just avoid late July and hike in late June then?

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#36216 - 05/02/14 09:15 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
John Sims Offline


Registered: 04/20/12
Posts: 523
Loc: Sunnyvale, California
Don't forget, the 100+ temps in Lone Pine are during the day. During the night it might well cool off to sub 80, so the portal will likely be sub 60. When starting your hike at 5:00 AM, or 6:00 AM, or whatever time, you will not be hot. However, depending on wind, sun, etc... you may warm up during the day. Still, the top will likely be cool.

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#36218 - 05/02/14 09:43 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: John Sims]
Sam Das Offline


Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 41
Loc: California, USA
Thanks John. I plan to start at 2am on a day hike. I never had issue with the cold, but when I did half dome a few years back, I hated the return trip 12-3pm walking in the afternoon hot sun. That's my concern at Whitney and want to avoid. The heat drain everything out of you. Also, I assume Lone Pine Campground at sub 80 at night may be perfect sleeping weather with little sleeping bags needed then?

Given my start time at 2am, what should I expect so I can dress appropriately? Should I start in short, t-shirt, flees, and waterproof jacket, then peel off as needed? I assume, i will need the flees/waterproof jacket (northface) at summit.

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#36221 - 05/03/14 10:17 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1535
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
Sam: Its impossible to plan now exactly what you will need to wear at your start or at any particular point. Temps vary by a lot. Take what you might need for all reasonably expected conditions then suit up at the trailhead according to actual conditions. A good principle to follow is that you should be feeling a little cold at the start, because you will warm up fast. Be prepared to strip off and add on layers throughout the trip.

BTW, I would NOT plan to stay at Lone Pine Campground. You need much more elevation to acclimate. Stay at the Portal at least, or Horsheshoe for even more el.
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#36222 - 05/03/14 10:46 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: saltydog]
Sam Das Offline


Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 41
Loc: California, USA
Yes, I would like to stay at Whitney Portal but my sense is that it would likely be full on 7/18-7/20? If one were to walk in?

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#36223 - 05/03/14 11:35 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7191
Loc: Fresno, CA
There are at least a dozen walk-in one-night-only sites just below the trail head. They're not usually full.

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#36224 - 05/04/14 01:04 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Steve C]
Sam Das Offline


Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 41
Loc: California, USA
Thanks Steve. What about the Whitney Portal Campground (not the one right below trailhead)? Does that one often get full during late july weekend? I prefer to stay in Whitney Portal and not drive to Cottonwood or horseshoe Meadows

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#36225 - 05/04/14 07:34 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Steve C]
Hobbes Offline


Registered: 03/28/14
Posts: 109
Loc: The OC
Originally Posted By: Steve C
There are at least a dozen walk-in one-night-only sites just below the trail head. They're not usually full.


Is it proper etiquette to point out that people sleep in their cars, or on the ground - either by their car or "near" the walk-in campground - at the overnight parking lot?

I've got a Sienna, so it's easy for me to lay down the back seats and simply crash. Of course, I don't set up camp or take anything out, so it looks like my car is simply parked in the overnight area.

Last year, a guy pulled up next to my car on a touring motorcycle (BMW) around 8-9pm, threw down a tarp, pad & quilt, took off his leathers, and went to sleep in the dirt right in front of his bike.

The FS of course discourages this activity, but what they're really focused on is itinerant travelers setting up camp, etc. For all the traffic up in the WP area, as long as you're quiet and on the trail early am, an official would have to have a major bug to be hassling anyone.

Edit: I might be in the minority here, but I really like the Inyo county campgrounds (made possible by the DWP) such as Portagee Joe, Independence creek and Taboose. These campgrounds are great if you're traveling late and you don't need to acclimatize.

For example, if we're on our way to Yosemite, and we get out of LA in the afternoon, we almost always crash at PJ or IC - especially if it's after 8pm. Still hot, but real pleasant by the creeks, and no need to drive up/back into the mountains before once again hitting the road.


Edited by Hobbes (05/04/14 07:40 AM)

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#36226 - 05/04/14 08:35 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1535
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
Originally Posted By: Sam Das
Thanks Steve. What about the Whitney Portal Campground (not the one right below trailhead)? Does that one often get full during late july weekend? I prefer to stay in Whitney Portal and not drive to Cottonwood or horseshoe Meadows


Why not try for a reservation at the WP campground? Also, there are unreserved first-come slots, and I had no trouble getting one of these in mid-July 2011.
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#36229 - 05/04/14 09:51 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: saltydog]
Sam Das Offline


Registered: 04/17/14
Posts: 41
Loc: California, USA
The Whitney Portal reservation is already fully booked during that time, that is why the questions started as I search for other alternatives.

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#36232 - 05/04/14 01:31 PM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: Sam Das]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1535
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
Originally Posted By: Sam Das
The Whitney Portal reservation is already fully booked during that time, that is why the questions started as I search for other alternatives.


You still have a good chance of getting a first-come or a walk-in at the BP camp.
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Wherever you go, there you are.
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#36245 - 05/05/14 08:57 AM Re: Late July weather in Lone pine Campground or Whitney Portal [Re: saltydog]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1239
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
The campground has a 40% of the sites available for walk-ins, just like all the trails in the Inyo, save the MMWT.

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