I took off from SLC around 3:00 am on the 23rd of July and drove out to Nevada and down through Tonapah to Bishop and onto Lone Pine to pick up my Permit at the Ranger Station. I then drove up the steep road approach to grab a camp site at the Whitney Portal Camp Ground. The change in temp and vegetation from Lone Pine to the CG is very dramatic. I sent up camp and chatted with some other hikers that were also hiking Whitney the next day. The plan was to rise around 5:00 am, but instead 3:00 am was the time I cracked the eyes open. So I ate and drove to the Trail head, but not until I made sure no food was left in the car. After seeing the picture’s of cars that had been ripped part and the bear that ran through my camp site the day before I thought it to be a good idea.
So at 3:30 am it was off to Outpost camp, I arrived well in the dark and got a little twisted when I forgot to stay to the right. So after regaining the trail the push was on for Trail Camp, I arrived here just as the sun was starting to rise from the east (obviously). I pushed through the sea of tents and decided to stop and eat at the base of the 97 switch backs. By this time one of the hikers from Trail Camp finally reached me and we chatted for awhile and started the push up the switch backs together. It was nice to chit-chat with someone up the never ending switchbacks to Trail Crest. From here you lose elevation, which remember that you need to regain this on the way out. I was starting to get a little winded while approaching the summit. Most of the hike to this point was in pleasant temps, but after cresting to the summit hut the wind was blowing extremely hard and cold. My temporary hiking partner and I jumped in the hut and ate a bit. Another guy entered that was just completing the JMT and was very thankful for any food we would give him. So after eating and grabbing some quick photos it was off for the portal. While on the descent at the trail junction we ran into a couple that were on the PCT. We all grouped together and hiked to the portal together.
We hit the trail head around 1:00 pm. And decided for a beer and burger at the Portal Store.
My ascent time was 6 hours and a 3 hour descent. After the drink I drove the three down to Lone Pine to catch a bus to another destination. I grabbed a bottle of tequila and drove back to my tent for a very relaxing and satisfying hike it was a restful sleep.