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Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Vitaliy M. » Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:17 pm

The MR via the NF Lone Pine Creek Trail, is within the Whitney Region Lottery Program.


I secured my permit on recreation.gov couple of month in advance, without any lottery. There is false information on the web site that leads one to believe it is part of lottery, but than you can reserve it if you do your search correctly.
I would suggest a winter ascent. No permit required, less crowds, unique experience. Enjoy.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Ulu » Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:45 pm

Vitaliy M. wrote:
The MR via the NF Lone Pine Creek Trail, is within the Whitney Region Lottery Program.


I secured my permit on recreation.gov couple of month in advance, without any lottery. There is false information on the web site that leads one to believe it is part of lottery, but than you can reserve it if you do your search correctly.
I would suggest a winter ascent. No permit required, less crowds, unique experience. Enjoy.


I also went this May 14. I stood in line and got my wilderness permit at 11am, and I then hit the trail at noon. I overnighted 2 nights at Upper Boy Scout. No lottery on the MR.

Also, here's a photo of why NOT to bring a big pack.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Kahuna » Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:59 pm

Two completely different issues. Lottery acquisition of Permit and Reservation Availability Acquisition of Permit (If slots are available for a specific date). Neither is a general "Wilderness Permit" as posted above if in the Restricted Whitney Zone which this OP is.

You can secure a PERMIT for the WHITNEY RESTRICTED ZONE if there are available slots for that specific date.

Be advised, per Rec.Gov. pretty much all slots have been reserved/taken through the middle of Sept. Acquiring one (in person the day prior if available) at the Whitney/Lone Pine Ranger/Visitors Center is your best bet during the Restricted Whitney Zone Permit period. May through the last week of September.

Also, allow me to reiterate that if there are 3 people in your party and your permit states only 2, you are in violation of the permit and one of those individuals will be asked to turn around if either Brian or Jonathon approaches you while on the NFLP and asks to see your permit.

PS: May 14th is not by any means the high peak of season. Just saying.


I would suggest a winter ascent. No permit required, less crowds, unique experience. Enjoy.


ABSOLUTELY FALSE!

A Wilderness Permit is required anywhere in designated Wilderness Areas within the Inyo Natl Forest, 365 days of the year for any overnight trip.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Ulu » Tue Jul 31, 2012 10:30 pm

A5RP wrote:Over night access to any portion of the Whitney Region requires a standard Whitney Access permit.

NFLP area is a portion of the Lottery, regardless of day or over night. From the first week of May through the last week of Sept.

Again, I work directly with the Whitney Permit Administrator on a daily basis and just confirmed this fact.


Actually, I should have clarified my prior post. For overnights, there are 4 slots per day that are saved for walk-ins. That is how I got mine.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Vitaliy M. » Tue Jul 31, 2012 10:37 pm

ABSOLUTELY FALSE!

A Wilderness Permit is required anywhere in designated Wilderness Areas within the Inyo Natl Forest, 365 days of the year for any overnight trip.


LOL

But there is no limit on the parties entering. Permits are self issue at Lone Pine ranger station during winter. Are however important for possible Search and Rescue operations. Rangers need to know if you are going up.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Kahuna » Tue Jul 31, 2012 10:57 pm

Yes, the "WALK IN" NFLPC allocation is 4 per day (MAY - OCT) and are available at 11am the day Prior.

The allocation for NFLPC "NO SHOWS" is available at 11am the day OF (MAY-OCT). Not the day prior. That is a change this season.

Just confirmed this with the Permit Administrator here in Bishop whom I work with for acquiring our Commercial Permits for the same area.

Vitaliy M. wrote:But there is no limit on the parties entering. Permits are self issue at Lone Pine ranger station during winter. Are however important for possible Search and Rescue operations. Rangers need to know if you are going up.


Negative.

WP's are not issued for SAR reasons. They are for inventory and control of usage in general within USFS managed lands.

There is a Daily Quota for every Inyo NF designated Trailhead.

You want to argue that point, than call the Administrator of the WP's for the Inyo NF at 760-873-2492 and dictate what you think they are issued for, to them.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby ChristopherFranklin » Wed Aug 01, 2012 12:33 am

A5RP,
I'm not trying to argue with you but what the woman on the info line told me yesterday was you can reserve a date 6months in advance and that includes overnights. She also said you can stay up to 14 days. So you're saying that's incorrect?
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby ChristopherFranklin » Wed Aug 01, 2012 12:48 am

LOL sorry didn't mean to start a war. But as you can see the system is clearly confusing to say the least. Is this statement true: I can go online in November (6months prior to May) and reserve an overnight pass for the north fork route?
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby JD » Wed Aug 01, 2012 1:41 am

Walk-in permits are available the day before at 11am. Unreserved reservable permits for the current day are available at 8am or whenever it is that the permit office you are visiting opens that day. No shows for the current day become available at about 10am, not 11am. I don't know what A5RP/The Chief is saying changed from last year since as far as I know it has been this way for many years.

Day use permits for entering the Whitney Zone (including North Fork of Lone Pine Creek) work a little differently. Yes, it is confusing, which is a nice thing if you understand it because then you can use your greater intelligence to gain advantage over those who are less intelligent. Hmmm... maybe I shouldn't be trying to explain it here?


"There is a Daily Quota for every Inyo NF designated Trailhead."

That's not quite true. There are a few Inyo NF trailheads that do not have a quota even in the summer. And in the winter, which is what Vitaliy was referring to, there is no quota for the North Fork of Lone Pine Creek.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Kahuna » Wed Aug 01, 2012 2:40 am

ChristopherFranklin wrote:A5RP,
I'm not trying to argue with you but what the woman on the info line told me yesterday was you can reserve a date 6months in advance and that includes overnights. She also said you can stay up to 14 days. So you're saying that's incorrect?


Allow me to clarify what I posted. You can reserve any date you wish in that six month window IF there is availability for all members in your party the date/s you seek. If there are six people in your party, your permit best indicate that number. Another note of caution. The Permit that you get for the NFLPC is not valid for the Whitney Main Trail Zone. You can not go up the MR and then exit via the Main Trail with a NFLPC permit.

Up to last year, I got a "Cancellation/No Show" permit the day prior at the LPRVC after 2pm. Did it four times as a matter of fact last year alone. Not a "Walk In" mind you. Have done so since the Whitney Region Special Permit System/Program went into effect when not guiding under a Commercial Permit. This year, you have to wait till the day of. That was also confirmed by the Permit Administrator this afternoon. New deal. That is the regulation. What they do at the LPRS on time of issuance is their call. Again, per the Administrator.

I stand corrected as far WP Quotas for NFLPC from Nov through April. I was looking at my Commercial Quota's. General Public are "W" required which indicates "Walk In" acquisition from any Inyo NF RS/VC that issues WP's. They can not be "Reserved" via Rec.Gov.

BTW: Try going online at Rec.Gov and reserve a slot after 1 Jan 2013. No can do. The system will not be able to reserve any reservable dates until after sometime in Feb or early March.

And for MY edification, I found this per the Administrators directions.

"Question 4. For Overnight and multi-night trips ~Where does your trip begin?
If you are starting on the Mt. Whitney Trail: Enter the lottery to reserve an Overnight permit.
(All other trails are NOT reserved in the lottery). Overnight trips starting on North Fork of Lone Pine Creek trail and other Inyo National Forest trails can be reserved on line, 6 months in advance. Trips starting in Yosemite, Sequoia or Kings Canyon National Parks, contact the park where you will start the trip for information."


- http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOC ... 347551.pdf

Thus I stand corrected on my Lottery call. ONLY the Main Whitney Trail requires a lottery entry.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Vitaliy M. » Wed Aug 01, 2012 5:25 am

That's not quite true. There are a few Inyo NF trailheads that do not have a quota even in the summer. And in the winter, which is what Vitaliy was referring to, there is no quota for the North Fork of Lone Pine Creek.


+1 There is no quota for NF of LPC in winter. However one is still required to fill up a permit at the ranger station.

And I have been told by rangers that filling out a permit with the itinerary is helpful in case someone needs a rescue. Relatives call, rangers check the permit to make sure person actually is there, than they check if their car is at the TH, than they go on a search with that person's plan at hand.
Other reason is to know how many people are using the TH and how big the demand is. I am sure there are other reasons. BUT to benefit SAR IS one of them.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby schaffner » Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:23 am

ONLY the Main Whitney Trail requires a lottery entry.


Still not completely true, for day in quota period use you can/have to do the lottery or hope for remaining permits.

http://www.r5.fs.fed.us/inyo/recreation/wild/howto.shtml#nflp
What permit do I need for the North Fork of Lone Pine Creek area? The North Fork of Lone Pine Creek trail ends at Iceberg Lake, beneath the East face of Mt Whitney. It provides access to the base of many technically demanding climbing routes.The difficulty of these routes is often underestimated and includes exposure to heights while scrambling over steep ledges and granite outcrops. Overnight use of North Fork of Lone Pine Creek trail has a separate quota that is not part of the lottery. For trips during the quota period of May 1 to November 1 the entry quota is 10 people each day. Space is set aside for walk in permits (4 people) and 6 (people) can be reserved 6 months in advance of the entry date. Day use of this area requires a Mt Whitney Zone Day Use Permit if you will hike beyond Lower Boy Scout Lake. Reservations can be made through the Mt Whitney lottery for trips during the quota period of May 1 to November 1. After the lottery, any day use space remaining can be reserved up until 2 days before the hike.One day before the hike, leftover Day Use space is free. Visit the Eastern Sierra InterAgency Visitor Center to pick up your permit along with human waste management pack-it-out kits.
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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Josh Lewis » Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:58 am

My trip report has some eye candy if that helps any. :wink: http://www.summitpost.org/the-grand-tou ... #chapter_9
Personally I liked camping at upper boyscout lake. 8)

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Re: Mount Whitney mountaineer's route

Postby Kahuna » Wed Aug 01, 2012 1:09 pm

schaffner wrote:
ONLY the Main Whitney Trail requires a lottery entry.


Still not completely true, for day in quota period use you can/have to do the lottery or hope for remaining permits.

http://www.r5.fs.fed.us/inyo/recreation/wild/howto.shtml#nflp
What permit do I need for the North Fork of Lone Pine Creek area? The North Fork of Lone Pine Creek trail ends at Iceberg Lake, beneath the East face of Mt Whitney. It provides access to the base of many technically demanding climbing routes.The difficulty of these routes is often underestimated and includes exposure to heights while scrambling over steep ledges and granite outcrops. Overnight use of North Fork of Lone Pine Creek trail has a separate quota that is not part of the lottery. For trips during the quota period of May 1 to November 1 the entry quota is 10 people each day. Space is set aside for walk in permits (4 people) and 6 (people) can be reserved 6 months in advance of the entry date. Day use of this area requires a Mt Whitney Zone Day Use Permit if you will hike beyond Lower Boy Scout Lake. Reservations can be made through the Mt Whitney lottery for trips during the quota period of May 1 to November 1. After the lottery, any day use space remaining can be reserved up until 2 days before the hike.One day before the hike, leftover Day Use space is free. Visit the Eastern Sierra InterAgency Visitor Center to pick up your permit along with human waste management pack-it-out kits.


Yet another indication that the system is rather confusing.

I am meeting with the Permit Administrators (I have a daily working relationship with them) tomorrow to voice my opinion on this matter. It is evident that after some ten years of this process, the system can definitely use some simplifying.

Will post after speaking my peace. Hopefully I can make this all that much easier. If I can persuade the system to open up Williamson/Baxter area for year round use, I hope they will be open minded enough to revamp this permit system to make things easier for the general public. I can say that the commercial side of the house is pretty straight forward.
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