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#44925 - 11/29/15 08:18 PM A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward...
WanderingJim Offline


Registered: 02/09/15
Posts: 205
Loc: California
So, as the year comes to a close, I start to think back to my hikes this year and forward to my hikes for next year. I've done much more than I planned at the start of the year, which has led me to be REALLY optimistic in what I can do next year.

My big Mt Whitney hike from the portal to the top of Mt Whitney in August was the highlight for my year, but I ended up doing a lot of other hikes (some planned and some done on short notice) as part of my training for Whitney (and then after). Some of which are just as impressive to me as making it up Mt Whitney. 5 years ago I was VERY out of shape and would assumed I’d die trying many of these… and probably would have. I’ve come a long way… or should I say hiked a long way in those 5 years? smile

My big resolution for next year is to rely on trail water more. I’m still hesitant to leave on a long trip without a full 3 liters in my Camelbak along with 1-2 bottles of Gatorade. I have to trust my Steripen and filter more to lighten the initial load, especially when I have reliable water sources along the trail.

My Yosemite hikes for this year:
Valley to Half Dome (took advantage of the early cables in this unplanned hike).

Valley to Upper Yosemite Falls to El Capitan to North Dome and back to the valley via Snow Creek. (3 days)
**First Hail Storm of the year for me in Yosemite**

Valley to Clouds Rest and Half Dome. (3 days). Unfortunately, I aborted back to valley due to not feeling well. I had planned to do a loop up to Tuolumne Meadows and back down to Merced Lake and the valley, but at least my primary goal (Clouds Rest) was successful.

Tuolumne Meadows hike on way to Witney.
**Second Hail Storm of the year for me in Yosemite** smile

White Wolf to Tuolumne Meadows via the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne River.

May Lake to Mt Hoffman (quick day trip before the Tioga Road closed).
**Snow flurries at the top!** At least it wasn’t hail. smile

Some local bay area hikes, including:
SF Aquatic Park to Marin Headlands to Muir Beach to Stinson Beach. This was mostly a multi-day test of new backpacking equipment for Whitney hike, but it was a great hike too.

11 times up to Mt Diablo’s Summit (1 more planned in December if the weather cooperates). This basically was my training mountain (it’s right next door to me) before my Whitney climb, although I did keep up with my monthly climbs after my Whitney climb.

A wide assortment of other day hikes all around the bay area and one overnight trip to Angel Island.


And then to look forward, here’s my list for planned hikes next year:

Hopefully if there’s a lot of snowfall this year, I’ll do a visit to Yosemite in the winter.

Probably a Tuolumne Meadows to Clouds Rest/Half Dome/Merced Lake loop (late May/Early June) to make up for the loop I couldn’t complete in July.

Ten Lakes to Mt Hoffman to North Dome to El Capitan loop (BIG loop). (early July)

August will take me to Japan to take on Mt Fuji from the base at 2500 feet (so about 10,000 foot elevation gain). I’ve done Fuji from the 5th station, but want to do the entire traditional Yoshida trail from the shrine at the base. and probably decend from one of the trails on the opposite side.

Will seem kind of luxurious after Whitney, since they have mountain huts all up along the trail. So you can buy hot food, cold energy drinks, and Coca-cola smile on the way up. Even a warm futon to sleep in instead of hauling up your own tent and sleeping bag.

And then later in the trip, a hike up and around the Japan Alps (Kamikochi to Mount Okuhotaka). Not nearly as much elevation to climb, but looks like a great place to hike.

Late September will likely be a trip from Tuolumne Meadows to Mammoth Lakes via the JMT.

If my body lasts smile and the weather cooperates, October will probably see me so a long hike from Hetch Hetchy to the lakes and area north of the reservoir.

And if that’s not enough for one year. Late July or Early September (timing will depend on lottery results and exactly where in August i schedule my Japan trip), will likely see me go up Mt Whitney again.

I’m thinking of coming in from the south (starting at Horseshoe meadows) or possibly the West from Sequoia NP this time. Doing this next year would also minimize problems due to the road reconstruction. I’d likely hitch a ride back to Lone Pine after returning from the summit via the portal.

Any suggestions are welcome on this trip. Such as what pass to take from Horseshoe meadows (Cottonwood or New Army Pass) and how many days it would take from Horseshoe Meadows. Also curious what permits I’d need for these approaches to Whitney. In general, I’d like to take the more scenic approach (south seems to be the better choice, but I’d welcome first hand advice to those who’ve done these trails).


Long term plans are Machu Picchu in early 2017, maybe the whole JMT in 2017 as a training hike for Kilimanjaro in early 2018. Even longer term plan is to hike to the Everest Base camp (no plans to actually go all the way to the top of the world… I’m not that crazy… yet smile ).

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#44926 - 11/29/15 08:39 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: WanderingJim]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7392
Loc: Fresno, CA
Fantastic accomplishments, and great plans!

You are sure taking a lot of great hikes.

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#44942 - 12/02/15 08:25 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: WanderingJim]
WanderingJim Offline


Registered: 02/09/15
Posts: 205
Loc: California
Oops... meant to end my post with a invitation for others to post their lists for this past year and what they hope to do next year.

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#44955 - 12/06/15 12:38 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: WanderingJim]
2600fromatari Offline


Registered: 10/18/10
Posts: 452
Loc: San Diego
Jim,
OAP is much more beautiful than NAP in my opinion. I've taken both multiple times and every time I've been to NAP, I've always thought how much better OAP is. You can always fill up at the last lake before heading up OAP, drop the water off at the top, head to the summit and then come back for everything.

I've never done Whitney from Langley, but have a friend who did it cross country in a day...it was hard. :-)

Permits:
http://www.recreation.gov/entranceDetails.do


Edited by 2600fromatari (12/06/15 12:39 PM)

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#44958 - 12/06/15 06:49 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: 2600fromatari]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7392
Loc: Fresno, CA
Originally Posted By: 2600fromatari
I've never done Whitney from Langley, but have a friend who did it cross country in a day...it was hard. :-)

2600: Are you saying he hiked over to Whitney and back with the Langley area as a base camp, or was it a Cottonwood Lakes to Whitney Portal circuit in a day? Either way, it had to be an epic day! I would like to read the details.

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#44959 - 12/06/15 08:03 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: Steve C]
2600fromatari Offline


Registered: 10/18/10
Posts: 452
Loc: San Diego
Steve,
He started at the Horseshoe Meadows and did Langley via OAP then did a cross country traverse to Whitney and down the Portal in a very long day. He then got a ride back to the Horseshoe Meadows to complete the day.

He used to have a site up with a long and detailed TR, but took everything down recently. He is one of those strange cats who doesn't get affected by the altitude, absolutely zero acclimatizing for the trip, just drove up and did it. He also happens to be one of those people who takes joy in self suffering.

Obviously, it's not something anyone can just do on a whim.

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#44960 - 12/06/15 10:52 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: 2600fromatari]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7392
Loc: Fresno, CA
Just amazing! I stand in awe!

I'm curious what route he descended Langley to Sky Blue Lake -- that is a route I am considering one of these summers.

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#44961 - 12/07/15 05:07 AM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: 2600fromatari]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 999
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
Originally Posted By: 2600fromatari
Steve,
He also happens to be one of those people who takes joy in self suffering.

Endorphins

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#44969 - 12/08/15 04:40 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: 2600fromatari]
WanderingJim Offline


Registered: 02/09/15
Posts: 205
Loc: California
Actually, I was wondering about going over Langley. Horseshoe meadows > OAP > to Langley, then across the crest to Whitney.

Sounds like it's doable, if not particularly a well traveled trail. But those are sometimes the best. smile

Other option would be to go over OAP or NAP and down towards the JMT and then up the backside. More distance and decent/climbing, but which would be more stunning visually?

By the looks of the permits needed with a Whitney exit, I could wait for the final decision until closer to the trip since they both start and end in the same place.

Wouldn't do it in a day, that's for sure. smile

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#44972 - 12/08/15 09:15 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: WanderingJim]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7392
Loc: Fresno, CA
I think the crest between Langley and Whitney is pretty much impassable. Here's a Gmap4 map link. Switch (upper rt corner) between t4, s (satellite) and t1 (google terrain), on the view and you will see how terribly rugged it is.

Somewhere there is a trip report of someone just climbing to Discovery Pinnacle from Crabtree Pass, and even that was rough.

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#44980 - 12/09/15 08:08 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: Steve C]
WanderingJim Offline


Registered: 02/09/15
Posts: 205
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Steve C
I think the crest between Langley and Whitney is pretty much impassable.


Oh. Reading 2600fromatari's post made it sound like Mt Langley to Mt Whitney was doable along the ridge.

I guess the 'cross country' mentioned was a dip down and back up to Mt Whitney.

Okay, scratch the ridge idea.

Might still want to go up Mt Langley on this trip, but will take the long way around (pretty much what I expected to do anyway).

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#44983 - 12/10/15 04:49 AM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: Steve C]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 999
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
Originally Posted By: Steve C
Somewhere there is a trip report of someone just climbing to Discovery Pinnacle from Crabtree Pass, and even that was rough.


Steve ,when I was there in 2014, there was a Scout troop who camped below Sky Blue Lake, and in one long day went over Crabree Pass, down to the upper lake, back up Sandhill to Discovery Pinnacle, reached TrailCrest, took the summit trail to Whitey, and.... all the way back .... in one day.

We watched in awe as they were finishing up.

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#44984 - 12/10/15 09:34 AM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: WanderingJim]
2600fromatari Offline


Registered: 10/18/10
Posts: 452
Loc: San Diego
No, this was not on the ridge. That would entail a lot of class 5. This was skirting Blue Sky Lake>Crabtree Pass>Discovery Pinnacle, as Steve and Harvey mentioned.

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#44985 - 12/10/15 12:22 PM Re: A look back at a year of hiking and looking forward... [Re: 2600fromatari]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7392
Loc: Fresno, CA
Originally Posted By: Steve C
Somewhere there is a trip report of someone just climbing to Discovery Pinnacle from Crabtree Pass, and even that was rough.


Here is the route description thread:

Miter Basin, Discovery Pinnacle to Mt Whitney

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