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Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
#57396 06/23/20 10:56 AM
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The main trail should reopen soon. I talked to the rangers at the summit. They were cleaning up/checking conditions/taking pictures. Right now, almost entire trail is clear off snow. Some patches on the switchbacks and small easy snow path befere reaching the summit. The west trail is also clear. I've attached some pictures.

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1...RjhGd3ZtcEI2TmlfZWxKVUFnQkNnTVI4Nnlydm5n

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1...RjhGd3ZtcEI2TmlfZWxKVUFnQkNnTVI4Nnlydm5n

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1...RjhGd3ZtcEI2TmlfZWxKVUFnQkNnTVI4Nnlydm5n

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1...RjhGd3ZtcEI2TmlfZWxKVUFnQkNnTVI4Nnlydm5n

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1...RjhGd3ZtcEI2TmlfZWxKVUFnQkNnTVI4Nnlydm5n

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1...RjhGd3ZtcEI2TmlfZWxKVUFnQkNnTVI4Nnlydm5n






















4 members like this: MuffenMan, bruce, Aravind, Big Pine
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
LostInMtn #57400 06/23/20 01:36 PM
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Trail is opening on 27th, We Just got our backpacking permits starting 27th.

Last edited by Aravind; 06/23/20 02:34 PM.
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Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
LostInMtn #57404 06/23/20 03:32 PM
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I have an overnight permit to hike the main trail 6/29 to 7/1. Have been following all information sources closely each day and had essentially accepted the fact that I would not be attempting to summit Whitney this year, especially with the lack of official comms or update from Inyo. Even after receiving my reminder from rev.gov, yesterday I was expecting to receive a cancellation notice a few hours later or early today.

Just over an hour ago, to my amazement, I received an email from the Inyo National Forest Wilderness Permit Resources Supervisors office reminding me of my upcoming reservation and prompting me with instructions to “check in” by replying to the email with some details.

Still unsure, I called the number from the email (760-873-2483) and spoke with a person there who confirmed that they are reopening the main trail this Saturday and that their offices have been given the “green light” to issue permits via email, which can be printed, signed and officially used to hike/camp. This person also confirmed their would be no need to stop at the visitor center in Lone Pine to pick up any additional paper work. Still in disbelief but obviously very pumped as well.

1 member likes this: bruce
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Floydja86 #57405 06/23/20 04:34 PM
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We were in the same situation until a few hours ago when we finally received our overnight permit for 6/29 to 7/1 !

We were convinced that all was lost. Happy hikers now but sorry for all of those that missed their June dates.

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Knocko #57410 06/23/20 11:33 PM
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LostInMtn: Thank you for the pictures. I found a way to embed them in the post above.

Also, I posted one of them in the Current Conditions topic

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Steve C #57411 06/24/20 08:24 AM
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I've never hiked in snow before and need some advice on microspikes. I'm going up the Whitney Trail on July 9th. Based on the photos from yesterday of the snow on the switchbacks, will I need them if the coverage doesn't change?

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Flatfoot #57413 06/24/20 09:48 AM
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July 9 is two weeks away. Lots of melting is occurring. Coverage will change significantly.

I wouldn't take any spikes myself as the trail will be well packed wherever there is snow.

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Floydja86 #57414 06/24/20 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Floydja86
Just over an hour ago, to my amazement, I received an email from the Inyo National Forest Wilderness Permit Resources Supervisors office reminding me of my upcoming reservation and prompting me with instructions to “check in” by replying to the email with some details.

This is great news. I have an overnight permit for July 4th. I’ll keep an eye out for the email next week.

When you reply to the email does it automatically send you the permit or do you still need to call and have them email the permit?

Guess we need to BYO wag bags this season as well


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“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt” – John Muir
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
MuffenMan #57415 06/24/20 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by MuffenMan
This is great news. I have an overnight permit for July 4th. I’ll keep an eye out for the email next week.

When you reply to the email does it automatically send you the permit or do you still need to call and have them email the permit?

Guess we need to BYO wag bags this season as well

Great news for all of us with upcoming trips for sure, MuffenMan. Hope you enjoy your time out there. I replied to the email referenced above but still have not received my actual permit email. When I spoke to the representative on the phone, she acknowledged receipt of my response and said that she would be replying to everyone that responds with their printable permit as soon as possible; you can imagine how many are coming in now that they have opened back up. I'll report back when I actually receive the permit email, I still have not as of now (12:30 PM Central Time).

As for wag bags, she mentioned that they would be available at the trail head.

Last edited by Floydja86; 06/24/20 10:25 AM.
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
MuffenMan #57417 06/24/20 10:44 AM
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Any word on what the process is for bear cans? I assume they are still required?

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Deke #57422 06/24/20 01:11 PM
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I randomly went on the recreation.gov site and saw a permit available for July 3rd. Snapped it up.

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
BFR #57423 06/24/20 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by BFR
I randomly went on the recreation.gov site and saw a permit available for July 3rd. Snapped it up.
Looks like we're going up on the same date. I grabbed a July 3 permit a few weeks ago.

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Floydja86 #57426 06/24/20 04:20 PM
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Just got off the phone with the permit office and they confirmed that Whitney Portal area and the main trail are now closed again until further notice because of today's earthquake. The Inyo County Sheriff's Office Facebook page says that it is unclear if Whitney trail has been affected at this time. Heading out that way from Texas tomorrow morning and will be checking in regularly on this situation as our hike was to start on 6/29.

If anyone in the area knows more, please keep us updated!

Last edited by Floydja86; 06/24/20 04:20 PM.
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Floydja86 #57430 06/24/20 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Floydja86
Just got off the phone with the permit office and they confirmed that Whitney Portal area and the main trail are now closed again until further notice because of today's earthquake. The Inyo County Sheriff's Office Facebook page says that it is unclear if Whitney trail has been affected at this time. Heading out that way from Texas tomorrow morning and will be checking in regularly on this situation as our hike was to start on 6/29.
I hope I'm wrong, but there is a possibility that the road may be closed for a month if this past event from 2017 is any guide:
https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/inyo/news-events/?cid=FSEPRD532003

Heck, I have permits for both early July and late July, and I'm not sure that either one would go through. And then there's my other backup permit for early September, but if there's a second virus shutdown...

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Big Pine #57431 06/24/20 06:30 PM
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We were scheduled to come out from JMT via Whitney on 6/30 after entry tomorrow 6/25 at Kearsarge. We are going to plan B. Entering tomorrow at Kearsarge Pass and doing Charlotte Lake and Bubb’s Creek. Not sure about getting over Forrester Pass.

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Floydja86 #57434 06/24/20 07:05 PM
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Hi Floyd: What email did they send from? I have not received but want to check in by email--their website does not include it! Thanks, Panamint

Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Big Pine #57435 06/24/20 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Pine
I hope I'm wrong, but there is a possibility that the road may be closed for a month if this past event from 2017 is any guide:
https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/inyo/news-events/?cid=FSEPRD532003

Heck, I have permits for both early July and late July, and I'm not sure that either one would go through. And then there's my other backup permit for early September, but if there's a second virus shutdown...

I have to assume that you're right. I don't think they're going to be in any hurry to re-open, given that they were clearly reluctant to open the portal due to Corona anyway. It's harder to argue against the very visible threat of giant boulders than it is against an invisible virus.

My backup plan to Whitney in a week was Mt. Langley, but with Horseshoe Meadows Road now closed, that looks like it's probably out too. I wouldn't be surprised to wake up tomorrow to read that the whole forest is on fire...

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Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
Panamint #57436 06/24/20 08:17 PM
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Panamint, the email came directly from an employee at the permit office, so I won't be sharing their exact email address in this public space. I would call the number from my post earlier in this thread for more information. Be prepared to hit "0" about a minimum of 30 times but you'll get through eventually.

Last edited by Floydja86; 06/24/20 08:18 PM.
1 member likes this: Panamint
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
LostInMtn #57451 06/25/20 02:57 PM
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Called the Permit Office this afternoon. I was able to get my Whitney main trail overnight permit for July 4-5 emailed to me. Took me about 20 minutes and 15 calls to get through to someone. The Ranger informed me they are planning on having the road opened by Monday or Tuesday.

Sounds like they are super busy with people calling and asking questions about the earthquake and how it will impact their permit. Dont expect to talk to anyone on your first call. Keep pressing 0 until a Ranger answers the phone.


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“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt” – John Muir
Re: Whitney Current Conditions/Reopening
MuffenMan #57452 06/25/20 03:36 PM
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I can second that they are still issuing permits. I called this morning, and after many attempts, was able to get through to the permit office. The person I talked to was super helpful and surprisingly didn't seem flustered by the flurry of calls I'm sure they're receiving. After a few regulations reminders, he emailed me my day permit for June 30th. He did confirm of course that as of right now Whitney Portal was closed, but couldn't say for how long.

On a related note, I just received an email from recreation.gov informing me (though I obviously already knew) that the Whitney Portal Campground is closed due to the earthquake, and that I could request a refund through the website. Interestingly though, they did not cancel my reservation, so I guess there is still hope. The roller coaster ride continues...

Correction: The recreation.gov email was for "The Whitney Portal Road and Whitney Area", not the campground specifically.

Last edited by retrofan; 06/25/20 03:57 PM. Reason: Correction
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