Mount Whitney

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I had the opportunity and was in the physical condition to climb Mount Whitney in the Summer 1994 as a day hike, when no day use permit was required. So these are relatively ancient photos.

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The hike from the parking lot at the Whitney Portal and back took 10 hours. The 2000 meters elevation gain put a lot of stress on the muscles (uphill) and even more stress on the bones (downhill).

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At the same time I had become addicted to classical indian music, and Hariprasad Chaurasia’s rendering of the Raga Kaunsi Kanhra played back in my brain during the first hour of the hike.

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We started at 6am in the morning before sunrise, and the first two hours were pleasant hiking through wooded areas. The first challenge were the infamous 100 switchbacks, which bring you fast to high elevation and to the Mt Whitney Trail Crest.

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From then it is still a long way to reach the summit. In good weather, the hike does not pose any technical difficulties. But it is long, at high elevation, and in an alien landscape.

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