I just set up an account specifically to ask this question in hope that some of the greybeards here who are in tune with all things Whitney may know.
What on earth is going on with permit pickup?
Inyo FS page (https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/inyo/passes-permits/recreation/?cid=stelprdb5144746
) has the following instructions:
Check-in by phone 1 to 14 days in advance to have the permit emailed.
Reserve your permit online
Watch Leave No Trace Principles (video below)
Call the visitor center nearest your trail head or the wilderness permit office to check in by phone
Print and sign the permit to carry on the trail and you can go straight to your trailhead.
NOTE: Reservation will be canceled unless you call before no show deadline.
Ok. Fine. Clear enough. I called Mt Whitney ranger station and got through the busy signal -- no one is picking up. I called another time and go through -- same. Called yesterday, called today, called every number on this page, including the public services officer: https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/inyo/about-forest/offices.
Nothing. Same voice message about reserving on recreation.gov, then busy signal, then phone ringing and no answer. Has everyone been furloughed? What's going on?
Those of you who've done Whitney or anything in Inyo backcountry in the past week, how did you actually "pick up" your permit?
Thank you kindly for the info.