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Re: [pct-l] Climbing Mt. Whitney during a thru-hike

In a message dated 97-10-15 12:47:58 EDT, brandt@kibo.Stanford.EDU writes:


Since next year's Thru-hikers may use this information for their planning, I
feel obligated to submit different information than some of that included in
your message. I suggest that the Class of '98 verify the information in
question by checking in the PCT Guide and performing their own calculations.

<< I'd say around half the thru-hikers this year took this side trip. This is
common enough a side trip that the guide book actually describes the trails
necessary in detail. As far as permits go if you get your wilderness permit
through the PCTA, simply ask for a Whitney stamp. 
The trail junction is at Crabtree Meadows. You'll head east from the PCT up
to Whitney Trail Crest. From there the trail heads north along the ridge to
the actual Mt. Whitney summit. 

When returning to Whitney Trail Crest, you have the option of continuing back
to the trail or heading west to Whitney Portal.>>

I believe that's "east to Whitney Portal." 

<< From there you can take a hitchhike to Lone Pine to resupply. If you do
resupply at Lone Pine, don't return to the trail via Whitney Portal. Instead,
return via either Cottonwood Pass or Trail Pass. 

You'll have to rehike 6-7 miles of the PCT but it'll save you from having to
make the 3000'-4000' climb from Whitney Portal to Whitney Trail Crest. For
plannings sake, all of this should take about an extra day. >>

If a hiker climbs Whitney and returns to the trail via Cottonwood Pass, it is
a 21-mile hike back to the point where they LEFT THE PCT (assuming that was
the JMT/PCT junction just above Crabtree Meadows). The 21-miles includes
rehiking 17.5 miles of the PCT (not 6-7 miles). The "climb"  one would avoid
from Whitney Portal (8,360 feet) to Trail Crest (13,777 feet) is 5,417 feet. 

<< It's worth noting that even in an average year, there will still be plenty
of snow on the way to the summit. Don't let that worry you too much though.
By the time you reach Whitney you will have already gone over Forrester Pass
so you'll have plenty of snow experience. >>

As the question referred to climbing Whitney "... on next year's hike north
from Campo," a hiker will NOT have crossed Forrester Pass before reaching Mt.
Whitney. Forrester Pass is another 22 miles (west, then north on the PCT)
from Whitney's summit. 

Charlie Jones

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