ApproachSee "Getting There".
Route DescriptionTrailhead Elevation: 9320 ft
One way distance per my GPS: 3.1 miles
From Trailhead, hike up the Holy Cross City Road (Forest Road 759) through a forest of Aspen and then Pine trees. At the very first bend you will see a few rocky areas that make it difficult for vehicles to pass but this presents no problem for the hiker. The road makes a wide switchback and after about a mile reaches the junction of the road that goes to Fancy Creek Trailhead (see “Getting There”) on the left. Continue straight on the road keeping an eye for the summit of Whitney when it occasionally appears from behind the trees (you can not see it from trailhead). You will soon have to leave the road and bushwhack your way up the forest before the slopes of Whitney above the road become too steep/rocky (I actually have not seen these slopes but that is what the map indicates). I did this at a non-specific spot at around 10700 ft where the forest had thinned out a little and the summit was in view.
After a short distance through the forest you will reach an interesting boulder field that is surrounded by the forest. This break in the forest will allow you to see what lies ahead and plan your route.
Hop amongst the boulders to the top of them at the base of a steep slope. At this point, the forest has been reduced to rather isolated growths of trees. Veer right (northeast) and go up the steep mostly grassy slopes to gain the top of the southeastern flank of Whitney.
At around 11300 ft or so, the slopes become fairly gentle and you will come across beautiful meadows that are covered by broken/fallen trees. The summit of Whitney will be in view to the northwest. Aim for it and follow a straight path up to the top. At around 12500 ft the meadows end and boulder fields appear again. These are easy to hike.