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surfponto
surfponto
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9/30/2016
surfponto
surfponto
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I have had this one on my ever growing "Bucket List" for quite some time. Something about Mount Whitney being the highest point in the lower 48 made it an easy list choice. The fact that you don't need technical gear besides good boots, headlamps and hiking sticks also meant I could do this with minimal investment.


Picking Up Our One Day Permits.

We started our hike at 2AM from Whitney portal since our plan was to be back in Lone Pine for dinner by 5pm. Hiking in the dark was new to both Mary and I, and we loved it! Your senses are hyper sensitive and sounds such as running streams are amplified in the peacefulness of the forest.

Our first encounter, about a mile in, was with a group of zombie-like hikers coming towards us. The group leader barely managed to utter "How far to Whitney Portal?" to which I explained they had about 45 minutes. Apparently they had got a late start and had been hiking all night to get back to their car. From the looks of them I am not sure they made the summit, but nevertheless this was a surreal introduction to our quest for the peak.


Sun finally started to come up once we were past the last campground (trail camp)


The brilliance of the eastern Sierras illuminated by the morning sun


One of the big obstacles you will read about in hiking blogs, forums etc are the 99 switchbacks just past trail camp. This section of trail seems endless and is also the point when you begin to ascend above 12,000 feet.


Mary heading up the switchbacks


Beautiful but we realized we had a long way to go


Guard rail section with sheer drop off to the right



We continued up the switchbacks which never seemed to end. Of course when you are completely exhausted you run into a hazardous section with extremely slippery ice.


Ice covered most of an upper section of the infamous switchbacks


Mary looking towards the John Muir trail which is now added to the "Bucket List"



We made it to the top!

We finally reached the summit around 10:45 AM. Completely exhausted, we had a quick lunch, took the obligatory summit pictures, signed the log book and began our long descent back down towards Whitney Portal.

It was an amazing experience!!


Mary happy to be headed back down after 9 + hours of hiking
edited by surfponto on 9/30/2016
edited by surfponto on 9/30/2016
edited by surfponto on 9/30/2016

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dsefcik
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9/30/2016
dsefcik
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Nice pictures Bob...congrats to you and Mary for a successful summit! Surprised to see ice still on the switchbacks, there was some pockets of snow still left on Langley also.

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surfponto
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10/1/2016
surfponto
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Thanks Daren,
It was a great experience. Very interesting to see the different kinds of people attempting to summit.
I really worried about a few of them.



dsefcik wrote:
Nice pictures Bob...congrats to you and Mary for a successful summit! Surprised to see ice still on the switchbacks, there was some pockets of snow still left on Langley also.


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ziphius
ziphius
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10/1/2016
ziphius
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Nice job Bob! I imagine the caliber of folks going up nearby Mt. Langley is quite different from those attempting Whitney, just because the latter peak is a 'destination' landmark.

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tommy750
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10/1/2016
tommy750
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Congrats on making it to the summit AND keeping your dinner reservations, Bob! smile Daren and I were on Langley a couple days earlier and I was more than happy to have spent a couple days acclimating at 10-11K before bagging my first 14er. As for the quality of hikers on Langley, was a speck disconcerting seeing 70 year olds already descending while we were just starting...

Daren on the top

Whitney Pic From Langley by tomteske, on Flickr

Whitney from Langley 4.8 miles south. If you zoom in, you can see the cabin and people on top.

Whitney From Langley by tomteske, on Flickr
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hikerdmb
hikerdmb
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10/1/2016
hikerdmb
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Congrats Bob and to your wife too. JMT2017
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surfponto
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10/2/2016
surfponto
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True. I expected to see people the whole time we were hiking. We didn't see anyone until we were half way up the switchbacks which was nice.

ziphius wrote:
Nice job Bob! I imagine the caliber of folks going up nearby Mt. Langley is quite different from those attempting Whitney, just because the latter peak is a 'destination' landmark.


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surfponto
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10/2/2016
surfponto
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We were passed up by a hippy girl with sandals and a huge backpack on our way back.
We both attributed it to youth... smile

tommy750 wrote:
Congrats on making it to the summit AND keeping your dinner reservations, Bob! smile Daren and I were on Langley a couple days earlier and I was more than happy to have spent a couple days acclimating at 10-11K before bagging my first 14er. As for the quality of hikers on Langley, was a speck disconcerting seeing 70 year olds already descending while we were just starting...

Daren on the top

Whitney Pic From Langley by tomteske, on Flickr

Whitney from Langley 4.8 miles south. If you zoom in, you can see the cabin and people on top.

Whitney From Langley by tomteske, on Flickr


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surfponto
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10/2/2016
surfponto
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It is on the list for sure.
Now I have friends wanting us to take them to Whitney next year.
Maybe I made it sound too easy? wink


hikerdmb wrote:
Congrats Bob and to your wife too. JMT2017


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Roryborealis
Roryborealis
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10/3/2016
Roryborealis
Roryborealis
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Such an awesome way to spend with your wife! Beautiful photos, I especially like your photo of the sunlight peaking.
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tekewin
tekewin
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10/4/2016
tekewin
tekewin
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Congrats! That's a big one to cross off your list.
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surfponto
surfponto
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10/4/2016
surfponto
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Thanks she is a keeper :-)
Never complains

Roryborealis wrote:
Such an awesome way to spend with your wife! Beautiful photos, I especially like your photo of the sunlight peaking.


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surfponto
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10/4/2016
surfponto
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Thanks. Have thought about this one for a long time.

tekewin wrote:
Congrats! That's a big one to cross off your list.


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rockhopper
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10/4/2016
rockhopper
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Congratulations! Your training surely helped. The mighty Sierras are truly awesome. Hard to believe I have been visiting them for close to 50 years.
Here are some photos of "photos" from the past.
Mt Whiney summit with my friend 29 years ago.

the thief who stole my binocular case.

We also climbed Mt Tyndall while we were on our trip.

Landslide dust from Earthquake.

Mt Langley climb from the West.

Near the Mt Langley summit 30 years ago.

Mt Whitney from Arc pass near Mt.Langley.

Mt Whitney from Mt Langley summit.



Cheers!

edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
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ziphius
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10/4/2016
ziphius
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Cool pics rockhopper!

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surfponto
surfponto
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10/5/2016
surfponto
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Classic pictures :-)


rockhopper wrote:
Congratulations! Your training surely helped. The mighty Sierras are truly awesome. Hard to believe I have been visiting them for close to 50 years.
Here are some photos of "photos" from the past.
Mt Whiney summit with my friend 29 years ago.

the thief who stole my binocular case.

We also climbed Mt Tyndall while we were on our trip.

Landslide dust from Earthquake.

Mt Langley climb from the West.

Near the Mt Langley summit 30 years ago.

Mt Whitney from Arc pass near Mt.Langley.

Mt Whitney from Mt Langley summit.



Cheers!

edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016
edited by rockhopper on 10/4/2016


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dsefcik
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10/5/2016
dsefcik
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@Rockhopper, sweet pictures, I really like those older photos...Tom and I passed thru several of those areas and I have similiar photos of that Miter Basin / Rock Creek area.

http://www.sefcik.com/2016/09/mt-langley-miter-basin-cottonwood-lakes.html




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Viper
Viper
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10/5/2016
Viper
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Nice work, surfponto. You make it look easy. If you want to see a 13-year-old's perspective of Whitney-in-a-day, you might enjoy my son's write-up: http://www.peakbagginben.com/new-page-69 Warning: it is not a short read!
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dsefcik
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10/6/2016
dsefcik
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Viper wrote:
Nice work, surfponto. You make it look easy. If you want to see a 13-year-old's perspective of Whitney-in-a-day, you might enjoy my son's write-up: http://www.peakbagginben.com/new-page-69 Warning: it is not a short read!
I remember the That was easy button, that was back around 2004, Bob, was it still there?

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surfponto
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10/6/2016
surfponto
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13 ! Toast
That is impressive!!
Love his write up.
Is Denali on his list ? :-)

Viper wrote:
Nice work, surfponto. You make it look easy. If you want to see a 13-year-old's perspective of Whitney-in-a-day, you might enjoy my son's write-up: http://www.peakbagginben.com/new-page-69 Warning: it is not a short read!

edited by surfponto on 10/6/2016

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surfponto
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10/6/2016
surfponto
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Didn't notice it unfortunately. Then again I was at 14,505 feet ;-)

dsefcik wrote:
Viper wrote:
Nice work, surfponto. You make it look easy. If you want to see a 13-year-old's perspective of Whitney-in-a-day, you might enjoy my son's write-up: http://www.peakbagginben.com/new-page-69 Warning: it is not a short read!
I remember the That was easy button, that was back around 2004, Bob, was it still there?


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