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How long to acclimatize?
#57817 07/30/20 03:48 PM
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We are driving six hours from a sea level city to Lone Pine on September 3 and hiking Mt. Whitney on the 5th. Should we try to hike in elevation on the 4th? Sleep at Whitney Portal night of the 4th (in our car as not camping)? I already booked lodging in Lone Pine for 3-6. My concern is that a few hours hiking and/or sleeping at altitude will not be that beneficial and we should instead focus on getting sleep in Lone Pine on the 4th and starting the hike around 1:00 am on the 5th. Thanks in advance for any advice!

Re: How long to acclimatize?
denisiel #57818 07/30/20 04:43 PM
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denisiel,

The answer to your questions: yes and yes. I am assuming this is your first ascent of Whitney and it would be in your best interest to get as much time at elevation as you can the days leading up to the Whitney hike. Horseshoe Meadows (elevation 9,900 ft.) is very close by to the portal and is an excellent place to acclimate. If you have time, you can day hike up to some high elevation passes from either the cottonwood pass trail head or the New Army pass trail head (cottonwood pass or new army pass (11,500 ft to 12,300 ft +/-).

Sleeping in a car or a truck is a personal choice. I like to sleep in my vehicle. It's big enough for me to stretch out and get a great night rest. But if you don't have a vehicle that can accommodate you or multiple people then staying in a hotel might be best.

Hope this helps!

Re: How long to acclimatize?
denisiel #57834 08/01/20 01:18 PM
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Different people react to altitude very differently, so it’s very difficult to say how much acclimatization you need. Your best plan is moderate hiking at the highest altitude you can access and tolerate and then sleep relatively high (Whitney Portal or Horseshoe Meadow). Sleeping in a nice, comfortable bed in Lone Pine will un-do the acclimatization you achieved at Horseshoe Meadow.


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