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[pct-l] Resupply at Trail pass

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     If there was a clearly best solution to the problem of resupply
in the Sierra, there wouldn't be so many popular options.  Here's my
     The first place you'll want your ice axe is on the side hike from
Crabtree up to Mt. Whitney.  So if you plan to resupply in Lone Pine
via Trail Pass, you can pick up your ice axe in Lone Pine rather than
Kennedy Meadows.  As others have pointed out, Horseshoe Meadows, the
trailhead for Trail Pass and Cottonwood Pass, can be a difficult
hitch-hike in June.   Everyone I talked to found a way to and from
Lone Pine, but sometimes it was not easy.
     Lone Pine to your next resupply is still a difficult proposition.
For this reason, many choose to go out at Kearsarge instead of
Horseshoe because it's a more popular trailhead, and much closer to
     Another problem with the in and out at Horseshoe (Trail Pass) is
that you do the Whitney hike during the long run to Vermillion.  A
good alternative is to do the Whitney hike before resupplying at Lone
Pine.  This means carrying a mostly empty pack most of the way up Mt.
Whitney to Trail Crest at 13,600 and exiting from the highly popular
Whitney Portal trailhead.  This is an easy hitch-hike into Lone Pine.
Getting back you have two options, Whitney Portal or Horseshoe
Meadows.  Whitney Portal is an easy hitch-hike but do you REALLY want
to carry one of your heaviest loads of food from 9,000 to 13,600 in 8
miles?  Not me!  The Horseshoe Meadows option is a very tough
hitch-hike, but there are locals who will take you up there for a
price.  One who advertised wanted something like $70!  My father and I
found someone else who would do it for $40.  Once you get to Horseshoe
Meadows, you're at 10,000 with only 11,500 between you and Crabtree.
In my opinion, this is well worth the extra 7-8 miles.  (It's 15 miles
from Whitney Portal to Crabtree and 22 or so from Horseshoe to
Crabtree via Cottonwood Pass.)
     With such options facing you, you can understand why some choose
to try to make it all the way from Kennedy Meadows to Vermillion in
one segment, but I don't recommend this.  Why race through the Sierra?
It's the "high point" of your trip.  The long side hikes are very
scenic and rewarding.  I resupplied often in the Sierra and made up
time elsewhere.

Brian Robinson
PCT '97

P.S.  The place to stay in Lone Pine is called the Dow Villa. (Another
poster called it the "Doyle" but it sounds like the same place.) It
was built in the 20's when Lone Pine was THE location in which to film
Westerns.  It has great charm and is the cheapest place in town.  A
room without a private bathroom is $30, $45 with.
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