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#4904 - 06/04/10 10:44 AM Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7209
Loc: Fresno, CA
This thread is designed to hold posts displaying pictures and describing the current conditions of the Main Mount Whitney Trail (MMWT).  I hope everyone will contribute.

Please feel free to post pictures of your own or from any source (please post a reference to the original location), so that everyone can come here and easily find/read/see the conditions.

Older posts will be moved as conditions change. (As a result, some posts may appear to answer comments that are no longer in the thread.)

Thanks for everyone's help. Your posting trip reports helps untold numbers of hikers following you.

Older posts moved here:   Whitney Main Trail Conditions 2017 (Old)

Note: Sometimes this thread spans a number of pages. You can click through all the pages, or click here to display all in one page.


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#52124 - 09/09/17 09:02 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7209
Loc: Fresno, CA
A rare rainbow picture taken from near the cables during an afternoon rain.
Posted on fb by Joel O, Sept 8.


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#52154 - 09/13/17 01:08 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
raja Offline


Registered: 09/13/17
Posts: 1
Loc: California
Summited on 9/11/17 (Day Hike):

First of all thanks to all the fellow hikers who shared information in this forum. It was very useful for me and also gave lot of confidence in taking up this hike.

1) Picked up the permit +WAG bag on 9/9 (Saturday).
2) Did a acclimatization hike up to Lone Pine lake after that.
3) Also started on AMS medication on Saturday Morning and took it till Sunday night. Didn't get any AMS symptoms during the hike.
5) Sunday (9/10) drove to Horse Shoe Meadows trailhead , did 1 mile of hiking and came back to Lone pine.
6) Monday Early Morning @12:30AM, started the hike and summited ~11AM. We were pretty slow so we started early to compensate that. The forecast was 60% rain & thunderstorm after 11am so we really wanted to summit before noon.
7) All the water crossing was passable without getting water into the shoes.
8) There is small patch of snow in the last mile to summit, just before the turn up to the hut. It was scary for me but with poles it was passable. Many other hikers were crossing it easily.
9) It started raining+hail once i got near the summit and was pretty cold. I didn't hear any thunder so just pushed towards the summit.
10) If i can change, one thing i would do is take less water. I carried 3 L water pouch + 1 Lt Nalgene bottle + 1 gatorade. There is ample water along the way so i would cut down to say 2Lts max.
11) We are a group of three and other two hikers could reach trail crest only around noon. By the time they were close to the summit they started hearing some thunder and others advised them to turn around. So unfortunately they didn't summit.
12) From JMT junction to the summit, crossing all those boulders was very challenging to me and took all my energy. Last half mile, i was walking like a zombie.
13) On the way down rain + thunder storm started once i crossed the log bridge after Lone Pine Lake, it was pretty scary. The thunderstorm really pushed me and last three miles i did at super pace and reached the portal around 7PM.

Sorry if it is too verbose, really excited to summit Mt Whitney.



Edited by raja (09/13/17 01:11 PM)

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#52160 - 09/13/17 04:56 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: raja]
Kumar12 Offline


Registered: 02/01/17
Posts: 12
Loc: Bay Area, CA
I will submit my trip report later. I did the day hike on 9/11 (Monday) with couple of my friends. We started around 1:30am and two of us summited at 11:30am and another one summited around noon. I think thunder and lightning started around 1pm when we were about 1 mile on our return trip. I never seen anything like that, we were really scared. Although dark clouds were forming around 10am , they were getting cleared after some time so we kind of took a risk. I donít think I will ever do that again. The strange thing is that some people were still going when we were returning! I understand it is a very difficult decision to make when we are so close to the Summit but after experiencing the lightning, I donít think it is worth taking any risk. The snow patch crossing near the summit became very slippery but it was manageable with poles and careful footing. We returned to portal around 8pm, we had to hike the last 2-3 hours in the rain but it was okay as we had rain jackets and head lights. All the water crossings were easy to cross with the support of poles.

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#52251 - 09/23/17 11:51 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7209
Loc: Fresno, CA
There has been some snowfall in the Sierra higher elevations the past several days. It would sure be great if anyone who has hiked this weekend, Saturday 9/23 or later, would post what they found.

Thanks!

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#52255 - 09/23/17 03:38 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
Jennifer Rau Offline


Registered: 10/03/15
Posts: 4
Loc: United States
9/22 - The first water crossing had ice covered rocks that took out two hikers right in front of me. Much ice on certain sections. The only steep section of ice was right at the cables. I felt secure with poles. The only really difficult element was the cold, very cold.

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#52276 - 09/26/17 08:06 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7209
Loc: Fresno, CA
Posted on FB by Elizabeth S:

Quote:
We planned on going in over Cottonwood Pass on Friday, but after an painfully cold night at Horseshoe Meadow, we changed our plans. We were able to snag some overnight permits to go up the Whitney trail and summited on Sunday 9/24. We camped at Outpost camp on the 23 & 24 and it was still below freezing.

Ice on the cable section, but not much else to speak of on the trail. In the morning hours we found some icy rocks on the creek crossing near outpost and some ice on the trail, but it was on a flat spot on the trail and passable.

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#52278 - 09/26/17 03:49 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
sknlim Offline


Registered: 09/26/17
Posts: 1
Loc: California
Day hike 9/25/2017

I felt like the trail is still in pristine summer conditions if you're planning to hike it after the small storm that past by last week. No issue whatsoever. No micro spikes or trekking pole needed. Simply side step the small ice patch at the cables half way up the switchbacks.

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#52279 - 09/26/17 08:59 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
Union Offline


Registered: 09/26/17
Posts: 2
Loc: Las Vegas, NV
Day Hike 9/25/17

Did the entire Mt Whitney Trail yesterday. Current conditions are excellent! If you're going to go, go now. The forecast has it continuing to get warmer throughout the week which is nice. We had almost no clouds and no wind all the way up to the summit. We started at 4:45am and it was 35 degrees. Within about about 2 miles I was shedding layers. The stream crossings were no issue except for outpost camp; there was a fair amount of ice on the rocks which proved challenging. The only other ice on the trail was one switchback at the cables. You could easily side step around it on the rocks like the person above me said. The only snow on the trail was within a mile of the summit and it was maybe 20 feet long and had been well worn. After trail camp, I wore a t-shirt all the way to the summit and back down to trail crest. Then it got pretty chilly when the sun went down. All things considered, we couldn't have asked for a better day to hike then yesterday, good luck!

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#52285 - 09/27/17 06:48 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Union]
cpSoCal Offline


Registered: 06/20/17
Posts: 9
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Agree with Union! My crew had a beautiful day yesterday to do the day hike on 9/26. We started around 1:30am. One of my teammates did slip on the icy rocks and ended up with a wet foot, but thankfully she brought extra socks and was able to continue on.

Below is a photo of the cable section, I had no problem with just regular hiking shoes. Going down I just went on my butt if there was a dodgy part.



The forecast had called for 30mph wind at the summit, so we were prepared for harsh weather. Thankfully we had beautifully sunny skies and only mild wind.

So incredibly grateful for the advice on this forum. It definitely changed the gear I brought with me and I was warm and comfortable the entire time.



A few more pics here


Edited by cpSoCal (09/27/17 07:17 PM)

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#52287 - 09/27/17 07:31 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: cpSoCal]
WanderingJim Online


Registered: 02/09/15
Posts: 184
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: cpSoCal


A few more pics here


Did you bring that wooden Whitney sign up to the summit? I don't recall seeing that up there before. smile


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#52307 - 10/02/17 10:18 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
Moxey Offline


Registered: 10/08/15
Posts: 1
Loc: Carlsbad, CA
My wife and I will be spending the night at trail camp on Sunday 10/8 and planning to summit on Monday 10/9. Does anyone have any feedback regarding recent night time temps at trail camp?? The weather reports have shown recent warmer temps.

Thanks in advance for any info... steve

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#52308 - 10/02/17 10:45 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Moxey]
Bob West Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 774
Loc: Bishop, CA, USA
Here are forecast temps for the Trail Camp area from the NOAA website:

http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php...12#.WdJ6g0bn_3g

Those temperature forecasts do not include wind-chill conditions. You can zoom in (click +)the little map, and point and click, to any area you want and get weather forecasts for that specific area.


Edited by Bob West (10/02/17 10:48 AM)

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#52325 - 10/04/17 06:40 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Steve C]
MtWhitney2017 Offline


Registered: 09/24/17
Posts: 7
Loc: Long Beach, CA
Conditions as of October 1, 2017:

Horseshoe Meadow -> New Army Pass -> Rock Creek -> Guitar Lake -> Mt. Whitney -> Whitney Portal

Thur, Sept 28
Horseshoe Meadow: Clear skies, frigid temps (all night and morning), no wind, no snow in sight, plenty of water, low creek crossings, trail in good condition

Fri, Sept 29
New Army Pass: Clear skies, warm temps (@ 12:30 p.m.), no wind, no snow on trail, plenty of water, trail in good condition

Sat, Sept 30
Guitar Lake: Clear skies, warm temps all evening, no wind, no snow on trail, plenty of water, low creek crossings

Sun, Oct 1
Mt. Whitney (via JMT from Guitar Lake): Clear skies, warm at Guitar Lake (@ 1:30 a.m.), no snow on trail, no ice on trail, good condition

Trail Crest to Mt. Whitney; Clear skies, frigid temps (@ 4:30 a.m.); high winds, no snow on trail except for a small 10 yd patch that has melted away

Mt. Whitney Peak: Clear skies, no snow on trail, frigid temps, high winds

Mt. Whitney Trail to Whitney Portal: Clear skies, warm, ice at cables (completely manageable), no snow on trail



Edited by MtWhitney2017 (10/04/17 06:46 AM)

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#52326 - 10/04/17 08:27 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Moxey]
Hikerdad Offline


Registered: 10/04/17
Posts: 2
Loc: San Diego, CA
Hi Moxy,

A buddy and I are going up 10/11 for a day hike - any trail conditions you can share on the forum would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you in advance!

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#52345 - 10/09/17 10:51 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: raja]
JJE Offline


Registered: 10/09/17
Posts: 1
Loc: LA
Hi Raja,
What AMS medication did you use? Diamox?
Sorry to hear that you didn't get to summit.
I had AMS last year that stopped me from summiting. Hopefully this year I'll do it.
Thanks,

Jason

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#52348 - 10/09/17 09:10 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Hikerdad]
jmester82 Offline


Registered: 08/11/14
Posts: 22
Loc: CA, USA
I was up there saturday 10/7. You'll have smooth hiking conditions for the next few days for sure. Its epic right now!


Edited by jmester82 (10/09/17 09:10 PM)

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#52352 - 10/11/17 10:02 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: jmester82]
Hikerdad Offline


Registered: 10/04/17
Posts: 2
Loc: San Diego, CA
We did a 1-day hike and summitted yesterday (10/10). We left at 4am and was back to the parking lot by 530pm. The entire day was gorgeous and we had a 30 minute lunch at the summit. Light winds and clear skies! Trail is in great condition. About 15 foot stretch of ice at the cables on the 99 switchbacks - but you can easily get around it. No need for crampons. Wind picked up in the afternoon. Overall amazing day.

We took Altitude RX pills 24 hours before hiking (and through the duration) and did one acclimation hike to Lone Pine Lake the day we arrived (10/9). Other than that no other hikes at altitude. Everything went into slow motion above 13.5k ft. But no headaches or nausea.

A big thanks to everyone for updating trail conditions leading into our hike!

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#52353 - 10/11/17 03:31 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Hikerdad]
Rohit Dube Offline


Registered: 10/11/17
Posts: 2
Loc: CA
I have 2 questions:
1. Is it a feasible option to plan Mt. Whitney Summit hike on the weekend of 21-22 Oct 2017?
2. If yes, I know this may sound silly, will I be able to find a group that has permit somehow?

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#52355 - 10/11/17 04:38 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Rohit Dube]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7209
Loc: Fresno, CA
Originally Posted By: Rohit Dube
I have 2 questions:
1. Is it a feasible option to plan Mt. Whitney Summit hike on the weekend of 21-22 Oct 2017?
2. If yes, I know this may sound silly, will I be able to find a group that has permit somehow?

1. Yes, if the weather stays dry.
2. No. Groups don't normally invite strangers to join. But there is currently a single day hike permit available online for Oct 22.
Keep checking, and you may find one for Oct 21, if that's what you want.

Overnight permits are usually available free to anyone walking in at the Visitor Center in Lone Pine in October.

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