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Jul 29th, 2019
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Whitney closed until further notice
#57443 06/25/20 10:25 AM
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New press release from the Inyo County Sheriff and Inyo National Forest: Inyo Sheriff Facebook

Damage assessments are underway in the Whitney area due to yesterday's earthquake and major rockfall, including trail condition assessments and analyzing the potential for more rockfall.

"At this time, the Mt. Whitney Trail, the Meysan Lakes Trail, the North Fork of Lone Pine Trail (Mountaineers Route) are closed until further notice. Permits for day and overnight summits of Mt. Whitney will continue to be canceled until further notice...Whitney Portal Road has been closed to the public. All campgrounds above the closure have been evacuated and will remain closed until further notice."

I was up searching the area yesterday and can report there was sustained and significant continuing rockfall due to aftershocks and unstable cliffs. Please avoid the Whitney area for the time being and respect the closures for your safety and the safety of our First Responders. There are about 1000 alternate peaks begging to be climbed right now.

1 member likes this: terraelise
Re: Whitney closed until further notice
Ian B #57444 06/25/20 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Ian B
Whitney Portal Road has been closed to the public.

I was up searching the area yesterday and can report there was sustained and significant continuing rockfall due to aftershocks and unstable cliffs.
Was there any notable damage to the Portal Road? If not, there's some hope that people will be able to drive up to the store and hike up to Lone Pine Lake this weekend.

Re: Whitney closed until further notice
Big Pine #57445 06/25/20 10:55 AM
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Currently, there is a manned roadblock low on Whitney Portal Road to keep all traffic away. I have no knowledge of how long the closure will last, it could be open by the weekend, or it could be longer. The Portal saw significant rockfall, including a few car-size+ boulders crushing unoccupied campsites. It's extremely lucky that the Portal happened to be uncrowded and no one got hurt.

1 member likes this: terraelise
Re: Whitney closed until further notice
Ian B #57453 06/25/20 07:04 PM
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Re: Whitney closed until further notice
Ian B #57463 06/26/20 11:57 AM
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I just called and spoke to somebody at the wilderness office (760) 873-2483 who said she could issue my 7/5 permit right now, but when I pressed her about whether that means the trail will be opened by then, she said she wasn't sure. As of right now, the trail is closed until further notice. I've seen several posts from people excited that their permits are being issued for the Whitney Trail in the upcoming week, but it seems to me that it's premature to celebrate having your permit issued if the trail is closed indefinitely. I'm hoping I'm missing something? Any insightful info? Thank you!

1 member likes this: terraelise
Re: Whitney closed until further notice
Lauren_N #57470 06/26/20 01:46 PM
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For now, Whitney closed through July 2.

https://www.facebook.com/InyoCountySheriffsOffice/

I am screwed. I have a North Fork permit in my hand for today.
Car has been packed since yesterday.

Contemplating a ninja run... but manned roadblocks and barriers
on possibly every (even dirt) road miles from even the bottom
of the Portal Road hill makes me want to instead lay in my bed and eat
junk food and gain even more weight.

Last edited by jaym; 06/26/20 01:51 PM.
Re: Whitney closed until further notice
jaym #57471 06/26/20 02:11 PM
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Originally Posted by jaym
Contemplating a ninja run... but manned roadblocks and barriers
on possibly every (even dirt) road miles from even the bottom
of the Portal Road hill makes me want to instead lay in my bed and eat
junk food and gain even more weight.

Haha, the struggle is real. Just when things were starting to look up, it all comes crashing down (pun intended). Guess my June 30th permit is out as well.

They're hammering the "substantial damage to the National Recreation Trail" pretty hard. Impossible to know if that's true, or if they just don't want people attempting to use it to bypass the Whitney Portal blockade. Either way, it's probably not a good idea. I'm just hoping that the Portal Campground actually opens on the 29th, but I'm guessing Mothra will probably show up and destroy it by that point.


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