Mount Whitney Sierra Trek

Starting Mon, Aug 7, 2023, 5 scouts and 2 adults started the roughly 50-mile trek from Cottonwood Pass to Mount Whitney and back. The first night scouts set up camp at Chicken Spring Lake which was a beautiful snowmelt lake at the bottom of a basin of mountains. This was the only opportunity for scouts to swim and get a much-needed wash-off for the entire trip. Scouts continued to Rock Creek where some went fishing as well as continued competitive card games. Rock Creek was the only campsite throughout the trip scouts were allowed to have a campfire as it was below 10,000 feet. The next day we continued to Crab Tree Meadow which was a long day but brought us close enough to Whitney we would be able to day hike it the following day. At the beginning of the hike, however, we had to cross a river by going over fallen trees making a fun start to the day. Throughout the night there were large thunderstorms which subsided just as we started our day hike. The hike to Whitney along the backside was one of the most incredible trails you will ever see with views of the Sierras and Guitar Lake that are unmatched. Fortunately, none of us got extreme elevation sickness and we were entertained by our own antics and the occasional marmot along the path. Getting to the summit was challenging having to boulder over the last bit because icy snow was covering the path. At the summit, we were rewarded with incredible views of the sierras and some iconic symbols like the Whitney shelter. Just as we got past the switchbacks up the backside by Guitar Lake it started to rain, hail, and thunder and didn’t stop for hours. Somehow we squeezed in the perfect timing to make it up and down Whitney without running into storms at the top. On the way back we backtracked staying at the same campsites each night which meant we could make another campfire at Rock Creek where we met some new people who used to be scouts and followed some traditional recipes to make some more delicious doughnut holes. On the last day Mon, Aug 14, 2023, we hiked around 12 miles and made it back to the Cottonwood trailhead.

Written by Tarkan E