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#54462 - 10/24/18 09:53 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: CMilller14]
lugosi Offline


Registered: 10/22/18
Posts: 1
Loc: ca
We're planning to do mountaineering route on 10/27 - how was it from the notch to the top? Did you go the class 3 way or take the way around?

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#54463 - 10/26/18 08:11 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: lugosi]
C_S Offline


Registered: 10/24/18
Posts: 3
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: lugosi
We're planning to do mountaineering route on 10/27 - how was it from the notch to the top? Did you go the class 3 way or take the way around?


Also looking for conditions for the mountaineers route. We'll be there next weekend.

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#54465 - 10/28/18 11:33 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: CMilller14]
Jay Garcia Offline


Registered: 02/01/18
Posts: 3
Loc: Seattle, WA
The mountaineers route? but then you mention the switchbacks, I think the mountaineers isn't optional at this time.

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#54466 - 10/29/18 05:52 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: Jay Garcia]
laohe Offline


Registered: 10/03/13
Posts: 7
Loc: CA
For day hike, you can do MR up, main trail down. Maybe that was Chris did.

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#54468 - 10/30/18 09:43 AM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: C_S]
C_S Offline


Registered: 10/24/18
Posts: 3
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: C_S

Also looking for conditions for the mountaineers route. We'll be there next weekend.


Anyone make it up the mountaineers route last weekend?

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#54470 - 10/31/18 03:33 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: C_S]
bruckbau Offline


Registered: 10/29/18
Posts: 2
Loc: CA
I did the Mountaineers Route solo on Sunday 10/28. I went up the MR and down the Main Trail.

Left the Portal at 4:55 am to warmer than expected temps. First sign of any ice on the route was on the big slabs between Lower Boyscout Lake and Upper Boyscout Lake. The ice was mostly avoidable through this section, but I threw on microspikes for a quick second at one spot where I had to cross the water/ice flow line. Other than that, the route was clear and dry until the Chute.

The Chute had a few big patches of snow in the middle. It was mostly avoidable, and when I did need to cross it, it was soft enough to kick steps with just my boots. I carried ice axe and crampons, but ended up not using them, because the snow was soft enough and the snowy sections didn't seem big enough to necessitate a transition. Trying to avoid the snow made routefinding a little more challenging, but not much different than finding an optimal line in any other conditions.

I would still strongly recommend carrying ice axe and crampons on this route, because they may be necessary if the snow hardens at all this week.

Once I hit the notch, the wind from the west hit really hard. I decided to go up the first gully. There were some visible patches of snow and ice, but I thought it looked dry enough to safely avoid those. As I climbed this section, I came across a few more hidden patches of snow/ice, so routefinding became a little bit challenging. There were a couple spots I had to downclimb/reroute, because my chosen line ran into an ice patch or a climbing move I wasn't comfortable with. With some patience it was certainly passable, and I made it to the summit at 11:40 am.

There were about a dozen other people on the summit. I passed by five others on the MR, but they were going slower and I'm not sure if they summited. The summit was windy, but I was comfortable in just a fleece with gore-tex shell, and hat/gloves.

I departed the summit at 12:10 pm. I decided to take the trail down, since the ascent was a little more demanding mentally and technically than I expected, and I didn't want to downclimb the route solo with the snow/ice patches.

Between the summit and trail crest, I passed two dozen or so others on their ascent. The trail was mostly dry in this section. There were a couple icy spots, but they were avoidable by walking on the rocks.

From Trail Crest down through the upper north-facing switchbacks, the trail was covered in hard-packed snow and some ice. Traction devices are definitely necessary in this section. I used YakTrax, and had a couple icy spots where something a little more aggressive would have been more comfortable. The trail became dry where the switchbacks become more east-facing.

After a long and steady descent on the trail, I reached the Portal at 4:25 pm.

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#54471 - 10/31/18 03:52 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: bruckbau]
laohe Offline


Registered: 10/03/13
Posts: 7
Loc: CA
Thanks, bruckbau! Great TR!
From notch, did you take a look at the condition of the death traverse or easy walk-off?
- laohe

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#54472 - 10/31/18 04:12 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: laohe]
bruckbau Offline


Registered: 10/29/18
Posts: 2
Loc: CA
The "easy walk off" looked to be at least half snow covered. There were definite footprints through it. It's looks like there are intermittent dry spots, and like it would be passable depending on the snow conditions.

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#54473 - 10/31/18 04:17 PM Re: Current Conditions: Mt Whitney Trail [Re: bruckbau]
laohe Offline


Registered: 10/03/13
Posts: 7
Loc: CA
Thank you!. It's very helpful!

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