Larry and Mike joined me and our new intern Andy Soleman for a great climb of the Mountaineers Route on Mt. Whitney (14494 ft).  We still had threatening clouds rolling in after noon, so I voted for a 2:00am wake-up.  Since I’m the guide, my vote counted most, and we got up at 2:00am!

I’m adding a conditions report next, but its amazing to see how much snow is in the route.  All of the rock normally exposed this time of year is burried – we just walked right up the middle, in snow, all the way to the summit.  Amazing.

We reached the summit just before 9:00am, and stopped at Iceberg Lake for lunch at 12:00pm.  Even though we cold have hiked down to Whitney Portal that same afternoon (making for a VERY big day), we opted to take a nap and stay another night.  Besides, we had a dinner waiting of chicken burritos with fresh avocado and tomatos, a first desert of chocolate-carmel cookies, and a second desert of icredible dark chocolate (thanks for sharing, Larry!).

Larry and Mike wanted to get down early on the third day, and my 6:00am alarm was beaten by Larry’s voice, “Well, time to get up!”  It was 5 freaking 30!  I managed to ignore him and stay in my bag for another 20 minutes, but we still made it to the Whitney Portal by 11:00am!  Hah!

Chris Simmons is a rock, alpine, and ski guide for Sierra Mountain Center as well as an AMGA Certified Alpine Guide.  More about his adventures can be found on his personal blog, Climb.Ski.Run.Sleep.Repeat.