During the snow season on Whitney, people will sometimes choose not to follow the trail, leaving the trail and heading up the drainage canyon in several places.
When the snow is heavy enough, as in last spring (2017) people would travel the main creek drainage up from, and down to, Outpost Camp, staying south of the creek to avoid the "Falls" area. Unfortunately, a young woman slipped and died in this area last spring -- she was descending after dark.
The second area is between Mirror Lake and Consultation Lake. The snow can make the actual trail area impassable since it is on a steep-sided granite incline. So people leave the trail and take the easier natural drainage route up to consultation lake, and then head back onto the trace of the trail as they climb toward Trail Camp.
You can see the two areas on the map below.