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#4077 - 05/06/10 03:58 PM Late Training
SoCal John Offline


Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 12
Loc: Southern California
Hey Everyone,

So I'm new to hiking and this forum. I've been fishing in Lone Pine my whole life and always wanted to climb Mt. Whitney. I finally put in for the lottery, 22 dates, and was the lucky recipient of June 6th - 7th. A little earlier than I was hoping for but what are you going to do. I'm in decent shape, I think... I started ramping up the training this last weekend, I know a little late, at Icehouse Canyon. I didn't have to hard of a time getting up to Timber Peak. I'm going back this weekend and grabbing a different peak. Any suggestions for training in the next month is appreciated. I'm thinking about heading up to Olancha and doing Olancha Peak before the Whitney trip. Anyone know the current conditions?

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#4079 - 05/06/10 04:24 PM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
hikehigh Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 28
Loc: 20.12345 -101.12345
Olancha Peak is great hike. It is similar to Whitney in distance and vertical gain, just 2300' lower. It usually has less snow and melts off faster than the peaks further north, but I am not sure of current conditions. It looked like it had now above 10,000' from 395 2 weeks ago.

I would hike Mt. Baldy from the village. Are you prepared for snow or icy trails? There will still be snow and ice to deal with in early June.
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#4080 - 05/06/10 04:29 PM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7718
Loc: Fresno, CA
Welcome John!

Good for you getting the permit. Others can help with the So Cal training. But I just wanted to tell you to be sure to read up some on the issues with altitude. Lots of people who are in shape get wiped by AMS (altitude sickness) and have to turn around before they get to the top of Whitney.

If you check the Orientation notes (link in the Feature Topics box to the left), you will find the "Learn more about altitude sickness" section. Hope it helps.

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#4087 - 05/06/10 11:19 PM Re: Late Training [Re: Steve C]
jeff evans Offline


Registered: 04/25/10
Posts: 22
Loc: Venice, CA
I'm kind of a broken record on this, but the Baldy Village trail, aka the Bear Flat trail, is the one that will get you into shape better than the other trails at Baldy. Six miles, 6K of elevation gain. Whitney isn't that steep. It will beat you up, going up and down.

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#4089 - 05/07/10 08:37 AM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
SoCal John Offline


Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 12
Loc: Southern California
Thanks for the help guys.

I will be somewhat prepared for the ice when I go to Whitney. As I said I am new to this, so I have no training. I am going with an experienced hiker, so I think I should be cool. We are hoping to summit but worse case scenario we make it to trail camp and get to be outdoors and enjoy a couple days of solitude....not to bad. I will be renting crampons from Sierra Elevations in Lone Pine and I'm looking for a good used ice axe as we speak.

As for the altitude sickness... I'm hoping for the best. I'm staying at the portals the Friday and Saturday before we start the hike. I already made the reservations!! Hopefully that will help. We will be taking our time on the hike so that should also help.

I will give the Baldy hike a shot in the next week or two. I'm going back to Baldy this weekend to do the Icehouse Canyon trail, but I'm going to wear my full pack this time. See what kind of difference that makes?!?

Thanks again for the help and hopefully we'll pass each other on the trail sometime

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#4090 - 05/07/10 09:05 AM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7718
Loc: Fresno, CA
> and get to be outdoors and enjoy a couple days of solitude...

Relative to the city, I guess you could call it solitude. smile You won't be alone up there.

If you are going to take an ice axe and crampons, PLEASE watch this video, and try to get a little practice on a reasonable slope before you go up the real ones.

How to ice-axe self arrest from the British Mountaineering Council.

And here's another reference: Ice Axe and Crampon Use (or misuse)

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#4091 - 05/07/10 09:44 AM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 562
Loc: Murrieta, CA
John, You said you went to IceHouse last week. And you are going again this week. Can you tell me about the condiditions? Ice, snow? Etc?
Thanks Joe Q
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#4092 - 05/07/10 10:00 AM Re: Late Training [Re: quillansculpture]
SoCal John Offline


Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 12
Loc: Southern California
Joe,

As of last weekend it was beautiful. There is still snow, but you won't hit it up the main trail until a little over 2 miles in. Then it is just patchy. When you are close to the saddle there is a snow chute you can go up rather than taking the switchbacks. From there I went up to Timber Peak which had snow on the top. All the peaks to the South of the saddle were still covered in snow. I think they are Cucamunga, Ontario, and Big Horn. I took the Chapman trail back and once again hit some patches of snow.

Here are a couple pics from last weekend...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/49902073@N03/
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"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks"...John Muir

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#4093 - 05/07/10 10:06 AM Re: Late Training [Re: Steve C]
SoCal John Offline


Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 12
Loc: Southern California
I was thinking this early in the season it may not be as busy... I could definitely be wrong on that. If the conditions are to bad I won't even attempt to use the crampons, especially since I never have before. I'm hoping for steps already being kicked into the switchbacks when we get there, but that may be wishful thinking. grin

Only time will tell, either way I will be higher on the mountain than ever before and there will be a smile on my face... anything else is a bonus!!
laugh
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"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks"...John Muir

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#4129 - 05/08/10 08:24 PM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
SoCal John Offline


Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 12
Loc: Southern California
So I went up to Icehouse Canyon again today. We attempted Cucamonga with no crampons. We made it to the ridge that leads to the summit. We turned around because it was still too dangerous without crampons. We did meet some nice hikers that were also training for Whitney. All in all a nice day. I wore my full pack with everything for the Whitney hike, minus the bear canister. I'm feeling pretty good about it though!! smile
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"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks"...John Muir

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#4132 - 05/08/10 08:35 PM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 562
Loc: Murrieta, CA
Hey John, Went to Mt Wilson today. 14.3 miles roundtrip and appx 4800 foot gain in 4 hours 50 minutes. Fastest I've gone since I was a whole lot younger. It was 85 degrees today....Drank nearly every ounce of my 100 ounce Camelback.

Got home, got huge burgers, fries, onion rings and had brownies for desert.
Looking forward to the comments on your tent. I have the same problem. Lots of rocks up at Trail Camp and possibly rocks can be put in the corners. Pray for no wind.
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"Turtles, Frogs & other Environmental Sculpture"

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twitter: @josephquillan

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

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#4133 - 05/08/10 08:42 PM Re: Late Training [Re: quillansculpture]
SoCal John Offline


Registered: 05/06/10
Posts: 12
Loc: Southern California
I think our hike totaled about 11 miles or so. We were kicking steps in snow though so I think I should be able to add a couple miles wink

I came home and had Taco Bell eek Maybe not the best idea??

I remember reading somewhere that there were a couple spots where you could pitch a tent... Maybe I was dreaming?!? We will see!!
_________________________
"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks"...John Muir

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#4146 - 05/09/10 11:16 AM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 562
Loc: Murrieta, CA
I know Doug's book tells of some places closer to Consultation Lake AND last year someone put up a map on the other site of tent sites that are better a little bit off the trail. Steve may remember this and could possibly find it. I'll also do a search.

You're going to Whitney before me, so I expect a Trail Report :-)
_________________________
"Turtles, Frogs & other Environmental Sculpture"

www.quillansculpturegallery.com
twitter: @josephquillan

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

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#4148 - 05/09/10 11:42 AM Re: Late Training [Re: quillansculpture]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California


Courtesy of Bob R
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#4171 - 05/10/10 06:52 AM Re: Late Training [Re: SoCal John]
John P. Offline


Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 52
Loc: Palmdale
Don't overlook the Vivian Creek Trail on San Gorgonio. Very steep (the first section of the trail) and a butt-kicker for a day hike. I actually hiked this trail about a month after I went up Whitney for the first time (first week in June - just like you!) and was impressed with the difficulty.

One important tip: reduce your training down to almost nothing for a few days before your hike to let your body recover from the intense training.
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"Get Busy Living or Get Busy Dying" Andy Dufresne, The Shawshank Redemption

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#4289 - 05/14/10 08:48 AM Re: Late Training [Re: John P.]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1253
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
If you want something approximating a trip up the chute to Trail Crest, go up Icehouse Canyon and when you get to the end up the long east trending switch back after the Columbine Spring, exit the trail to the canyon bottom and head up the chute towards Bighorn Peak...this about 1,700' of climbing in about 1 1/2 miles. There should still be enough snow in that chute.

Also, Mt. Badden-Powell at Vincent Gulch is a nice challenge but if you haven't climbed it before in these conditions you should be aware it is very easy to go off line descending and get into some awfully steep areas. Link Thingy

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#4290 - 05/14/10 08:55 AM Re: Late Training [Re: John P.]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1253
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Originally Posted By: John P.
Don't overlook the Vivian Creek Trail on San Gorgonio. Very steep (the first section of the trail) and a butt-kicker for a day hike. I actually hiked this trail about a month after I went up Whitney for the first time (first week in June - just like you!) and was impressed with the difficulty.

One important tip: reduce your training down to almost nothing for a few days before your hike to let your body recover from the intense training.


The north chutes are a better place to train for the most difficult part of an early June MMWT trip, the chute. We ended up using crampons and axes at about 10,350' in late April. I'm sure there is a route to the summit beaten in along with high speed glissade runs.

Also, the approach is about 6 miles to these chutes, similar to what you will have getting to Trail Camp; however, it is best to go cross country once you reach S.F. Meadow.


Edited by wbtravis (05/14/10 09:10 AM)

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