Because of its southerly route and sun-drenched terrain, it is the earliest of the trails in this guidebook to open in the spring. Follow Horseshoe Meadow Road to its end. The Pacific Crest Trail is nearly flat over this segment, with several ups and downs along the way. Just south of Lone Pine, the gateway to Mt Whitney, you leave Rt 395 and climb 6,000 feet up Horseshoe Meadow Road, a long windy road up the side of the mountain. Hiked this back in September 2018; absolutely stunning scenery, first real time where I did backpacking and can safely say that I will be planning on returning to this trail sometime in the future and continue backpacking. 6 ½ hour riding time The plan I came up with was a slight variation on our 2012 trip, but on a much tighter schedule: drive to Whitney Portal, leave the car, “teleport” over to Horseshoe Meadows. From this notch, angle left and scramble up a small chimney. MILE 750.2 | Follow Cottonwood Pass 4 mi / 6.4 km to Horseshoe Meadow and then hitch 18 mi / 28.9 km to Lone Pine. Both camps are close to running creeks. The trail itself is impressive as it climbs through the talus, large rock faces, and imposing granite towers. We will work our way to Crabtree Meadows, where we will make camp for a day hike to the summit of Mt. This trailhead (along with the New Army Pass trailhead) starts at nearly 10,000 feet, the highest starting point of any of the trips in this guidebook, with an elevation gain of only 7341 feet over about 30 miles of trail. Mile 20.4 to 24.2 (Lower Crabtree Meadow to Guitar Lake) At the trail junction in Lower Crabtree Meadow, take the right fork leading to the Crabtree Patrol Cabin and Guitar Lake. All are easy Class 2 scrambling (See note below) and provide a bird's-eye view of the sheer, nearly vertical east face. Can be done in two days but wish we had spent more time. Horseshoe Meadows to Mt. The paved road is usually open from May to late October. Deer are often seen browsing in these meadows. Mile 27.7 to 29.7 (Mount Whitney Trail to Mount Whitney) There are only 2 more miles to the summit and a little more than 1000 feet of elevation gain. Whitney Portal. About a mile from the trailhead, the trail crosses the creek and less than 100 yards from this crossing, there's a faint, almost invisible trail going off to the left. Before reaching the Crabtree Patrol Cabin, turn left and cross the creek. Langley is only about 500 feet shorter than Mt. The trail passes through some beautiful high Sierra Nevada meadow terrain with widely spaced lodgepole, limber, and foxtail pine. As one drops into Rock Creek there are excellent views of Mount Langley, Joe Devel, Mount Pickering, Mount Chamberlin, Mount Mallory, and Mount LeConte to the north. Our trips originate trips primarily from Horseshoe Meadows. After you cross the outlet creek, there is a short climb of about 300 feet. There are also numerous campsites a little higher at the 11,900-foot level near a series of small tarns linked by a small stream flowing toward Hitchcock Lakes. After breakfast and orientation, riders travel to Cottonwood Pass and continue on the PCT to camp alongside of Rock Creek. Planning Your Hike. From Los Angeles, California, take the I-5 North to the 14 North to the 395 North and then turn left on This is a great way to summit Whitney if you can’t get a permit for the standard trail. To reach the top of the first needle, Aiguille Extra, leave the trail about 1 mile from the trail junction and scramble to the top. Near the 10,400-foot level, the trail crosses Guyot Creek. Refer to Chapter 4 for a complete discussion of wilderness permit requirements. some earthquake damage on crest trail but easy to manage. Just about 40 miles starting in Horseshoe Meadow and ending at Whitney Portal. A series of switchbacks seems endless but finally ends at the junction with the Mount Whitney Trail. From Lower Crabtree Meadow to the Crabtree Patrol Cabin it is about 1.3 miles with a slight climb of about 400 feet. It's a great way to climb Mount Whitney if you don't have any permit and you're up for a 3-4 days hike in the mountain. The paved road is usually open from May to late October. At Guyot Pass, one can climb the ridge, over easy terrain, to the summit of Mount Guyot with its 360-degree views of the Sierra Nevada and Mount Whitney. To reach the trailhead from Lone Pine, drive three miles west on Whitney Portal Road to Horseshoe Meadow Road and turn left. MT. From the pass the trail advances past Crabtree Meadow and the Crabtree Patrol Cabin, where it joins the John Muir Trail on its way to the summit of Whitney. At the upper end of the meadow, the trail begins its upward climb to Cottonwood Pass, gaining about 1000 feet in less than 2 miles. There are numerous excellent places to camp near the lake. This places the … Turn south onto Horseshoe Meadow Road and continue 20.5 miles to Horseshoe Meadow and the Cottonwood Pass trailhead (not to be confused with the Cottonwood Lakes and New Army Pass trailhead). At Lower Crabtree Meadow there is a bear-proof food storage box located about 75 yards south of the Whitney Creek crossing on the west side of the Pacific Crest Trail. Lone Pine to Horseshoe Meadow $85 first passenger, $30 each additional. After this initial climb, the rate of ascent slackens. WHITNEY TRAIL RIDE Sequoia National Park/Golden Trout Wilderness 7 Days Horseshoe Meadows to Horseshoe Meadows . I have official notification that we have a permit for the July dates for our Mount Whitney excursion! Most of the information on this page is directly excerpted from Mount Whitney - The Complete Trailhead-to-Summit Hiking Guide by Paul Richins, Jr., pages 134-142. 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