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3 July 19 Summit
#55604 07/02/19 02:15 AM
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JenPero Offline OP
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Hey everyone, this is my first time doing Mt. Whitney. Planning on starting at midnight and summiting early morning on the 3rd. I scooped up a permit two days ago with amazing luck!

Was wondering if many people start at midnight? Iíve seen a lot about a 0300 start time but not midnight, just trying to figure out if thatís because people want sleep or they want more light.

Second, is anyone else headed up that day? Right now Iím rolling solo.

Thanks all!

Re: 3 July 19 Summit
JenPero #55605 07/02/19 06:13 AM
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Your starting time depends on how fast you are. The general idea is to hike up in the dark when you are fresh and hike down in daylight when you are tired. Many first timers have difficulty sleeping the night before. So, why not start at midnight.

Please know that there are portions of the trail with serious amounts of ice and snow. If you are not skilled in winter mountaineering, it will be dangerous to attempt the summit.

Re: 3 July 19 Summit
JenPero #55610 07/02/19 12:40 PM
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In addition to the basics of self arresting a downhill slide with an ice axe for self-safety, wearing crampons to hike up the 1,000' snow chute after trail camp or to grip the 99 switchback trail up or down, and using the ice axe as a slide brake for a glissade down the snow chute, you will want to ascend as much as possible while snow is still frozen and be back down to trail camp before sunlight thawings of the snow cover start refreezing around mid afternoon. With 10 uphill miles to cover from trailhead to summit, you'll want to start at the midnight hour. An extra hour of sleep won't make a difference except on the hike back down and if you're done sooner, you nap anyway.

8 days ago when I did it, there was still enough snow cover above 10k' that I didn't even take my MICROspikes. Also, I only held and used my axe as a belay/handle, and chute glissade brake, between Trail Camp and summit, up and down; no trekking pole. Many have made it recently with less but I prefer to have and keep as much metal in the snow as possible.

Good luck!

Re: 3 July 19 Summit
mrcooperou812 #55613 07/02/19 05:32 PM
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Originally Posted By: mrcooperou812
8 days ago when I did it, there was still enough snow cover above 10k' that I didn't even take my MICROspikes.

To be clear, are you saying that you did use crampons?


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