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Temperature on the trail vs Lone Pine
#58887 06/24/21 08:09 AM
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magarac Offline OP
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Good morning,
First, kudos to firefighters and the crew managing the Inyo Creek fire:
https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7564/

I have the permit for June 30, and so far, the plan is to start the trail to the summit on Tuesday, June 29, around 11pm. Hopefully, the trail will get open by then, and in that case, I have few questions please:
(a) Lone Pine max temperatures are projected to be around 100 ( Tuesday and Wednesday ), and around 75 after 11pm. I would assume that at the start of the trailhead it would be a bit cooler than 75 around 11pm, as it is bit higher than Lone Pine - is this reasonable assumption ? Also, I would think that going up, the temperature will decrease, and higher up, the wind will pick up thus lowering temp as well, correct ? What can I expect at the summit ( I am planning on arriving just before noon ) - quite windy ( 15-20 mph ? ) and temp in low 50-is ? I need to plan for just the right amount of clothes to carry.
(b) Assuming the fires would be extinguished by the weekend ( is this reasonable assumption anyway ? ), I would think there will be still some smoke lingering from the burnt-out area ? Current winds are S and SW , so the smoke would be away from the trail - any thoughts ?


Looking forward to your advice / opinion and discussion,

Best,
magarac

Re: Temperature on the trail vs Lone Pine
magarac #58890 06/24/21 09:49 AM
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Hey there.

Tough to say what the fire situation would be by then. Looks like it is in good shape but you never know.

As for weather, sounds about right. This site is pretty good:

https://www.mountain-forecast.com/peaks/Mount-Whitney/forecasts/4418

A little tricky to figure out at first. Temperatures for each main elevation spot are listed.

Good luck.

Re: Temperature on the trail vs Lone Pine
magarac #58891 06/24/21 01:56 PM
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Generally speaking, temperature decreases by about four degees per 1000ft. This certainly doesn't always hold exactly. But it should give you a good idea. This means that the trailhead should be about 17F cooler than Lone Pine and the summit about 42F cooler than Lone Pine. We could expect it to get up to about 83F at Whitney Portal at around 5:30PM (the hottest time of day). And it should be around 58F if you start at 11:00PM. 100F in Lone Pine also translates into about 58F at the summit. But this would be at around 5:30PM. If you are starting at 11:00PM, you will reach the summit MUCH earlier, and it will be quite a bit cooler than this.

Originally Posted by magarac
Assuming the fires would be extinguished by the weekend ( is this reasonable assumption anyway ? ), I would think there will be still some smoke lingering from the burnt-out area ? Current winds are S and SW , so the smoke would be away from the trail - any thoughts ?

Keep in mind that the area won’t necessarily open the second the fire is contained. Containment means the fire is still burning, but in a confined area. Fire personnel will still need to be on hand, which could potentially keep the area closed for a couple to many more days. How long is unknown, and conditions will need to be checked day by day to determine whether a June 30 hike is possible (I have a permit for the same day).

Last edited by StorminMatt; 06/24/21 02:07 PM.
Re: Temperature on the trail vs Lone Pine
magarac #58893 06/24/21 04:26 PM
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magarac Offline OP
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Wiff & StorminMatt, thanks a lot for great info + advice ! Indeed, it will be day-by-day monitoring of the situation. Anyway, I can not cancel my rental now, so I will drive up to Lone Pine on Sunday, and as a backup plan I am thinking of Mt Langley ( still researching info on AllTrails , etc ... )
Best,
magarac

Re: Temperature on the trail vs Lone Pine
magarac #58894 06/24/21 04:58 PM
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Good luck! If my July reservations get canceled, I'm planning a three-day Lone Pine bar crawl.

Re: Temperature on the trail vs Lone Pine
magarac #58895 06/24/21 09:26 PM
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Good plan, magarac. Hiking Langley will not disappoint you. If you have several days, you could also hike to Trail Pass and Trail Peak, southwest of Horseshoe Meadows.


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