On June 28-30, 2013, my friends and I hiked to the summit of Mount Whitney via its most popular route, the Mount Whitney Trail. The total distance was 21.4 miles with an elevation gain of 6,145 ft (1,873 m). We started the hike at the Whitney Portal at an elevation of 8,360 ft (2,548 m), camped overnight at Trail Camp at 12,000 ft (3,658 m), reached the summit the next day at 14,505 ft (4,421 m), then hiked all the way back to Whitney Portal.
|Paul, Vi, Mike and me at Mount Whitney summit, June 2013|
|Roman at Mount Whitney summit, June 2013 (Photo by Roman Racela)|
Roman, our leader, was awarded a permit that he reserved online at www.recreation.gov with a June 29 entry date. Each of us paid $15 for the permit. Paul reserved our campsites at the Whitney Portal Campground (Mt. Whitney Family Campground) through the same website. The campground fee was $28 per night. Before the trip, we as a group did a few hikes in various local trails, and camped overnight at the White Mountains in Bishop, CA a weekend before the trip. You may click here to read how I trained for this summit hike.
Paul and I drove on Thursday night, while the rest of our friends Roman, Vi, and Mike drove on Friday. We took US-395 north to Lone Pine, CA and arrived at the Whitney Portal Campground, elevation 8,360 ft (2,548 m), at 11 p.m. The reserved campsites were labeled so we did not have a hard time finding ours. That night, the temperature felt like it was in the mid-70s. Aside from the sound of the nearby creek, the campground was quiet.