Ascent of Mount Whitney on 2012-08-18
|Others in Party:||Laura Friedrich|
|Date:||Saturday, August 18, 2012|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Motorized Transport to Trailhead:||Car|
| Elevation:||14495 ft / 4418 m|
Ascent Trip ReportI was tempted to check off "Road Hike" as the trail up Whitney is more a mountain highway than a trail. It is in excellent condition and thanks should go to the huge effort at establishing it (and maintaining it all these years).
We started off on the trail by headlamp (no moon, but super easy to follow) at 1:15AM and made our way ever upwards, reaching the Trail Crest at 5:08AM (3h53m) - passing several other parties en route. As it now seemed feasible to catch the sunrise, it was time to pick up the pace a little. The route behind the pinnacles toward and finally up the summit is straight-forward and involves relatively little additional elevation gain (actually a slight loss at the beginning of this traverse). The summit was reached just in time for sunrise, 4h49m after leaving the trailhead. Definitely worthwhile and recommended! As it was obviously still early, it was chilly on top - so nice to have carried some warmer clothing to throw on while taking a few pics and enjoying the stellar views.
The descent was uneventful, passing scores of other hikers making their way up the route - most of whom had camped somewhere along the way. I would certainly recommend getting on the trail sometime between midnight and 2AM if you want a more "remote" and wilderness feel to the peak, and if you're looking to bag this one in a day.
|Summary Total Data|
| Elevation Gain:||8842 ft / 2694 m|
| Extra Gain:||246 ft / 74 m|
| Distance:||22 mi / 35.4 km|
| Route:||Standard Trail|
| Trailhead:||Whitney Portal 6145 ft / 1872 m|
| Quality:||6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)|
| Route Conditions:||Maintained Trail|
| Gear Used:||Ski Poles|
| Weather:||Pleasant, Breezy, Partly Cloudy|
| Time Up:||4 Hours 49 Minutes|
| Time Down:||3 Hours 6 Minutes|
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