Sunday, August 7, 2011

Initial Thoughts

Before I post a trip report and photos I would like to offer up some thoughts.......The trip was a success. I could not have done this without the support of my family and friends. I would especially like to thank my wife. She went above and beyond to make this happen for me. I love her so much. Thank you Judy, Te Amo Mi Amor.

I completed the trip in 15 nights/16 days as planned, but that was the only thing that went as planned. I had to tweak my itinerary daily as conditions dictated. There is alot of snow and water on the trail. Trail is hard to follow in spots due to the snow. The first half of the trail was a breeze, very little snow. But the second half is another story. I read alot of reports and viewed a ton of photos from years past to get an idea what was in store for me and the trail looks nothing like anything I had read or seen so far. It may be August on the calendar, but it is still spring in the Sierra's.

Most difficult part of the trip was the mental battle. Snow, Ice, Water, Home Sick and then the straw that almost broke the camel's back......Thunderstorms. Bad T-Storms Started July 29th and got progressively worse until the apex July 31st. Lightning, Hail, Thunder and lots of Rain. I did not dry out until Tuesday August 2nd. Really was a bummer having to bed down in your tent at noon waiting out the storms.

Overall a great experience. I really want to return in a "normal" year to compare the two experiences. I thank God that I was able to safely complete the trail on time.

I again want to thank my wonderful wife. She drove all night from a conference she was attending in Anaheim Friday afternoon through Los Angeles rush hour traffic to get to the Whitney Portal trailhead. She slept in her car that night. When I was close enough on the SPOT, she hiked up to the Whitney Zone Boundary sign and waited for me. I was reunited with my loving wife at 1100 Saturday August 6th. I was completely overcome with emotion as was she. It was a genuine loving moment in our lives that I will never forget. It was very special. Gracias Mi Amor, Te Amo.


  1. way to go Jim! can't wait to see the photos and hear your account.

  2. Hey Jim Great Photos! This is Joseph the really tall guy who hiked with you from VVR to MTR! I'm glad you made it all the way and on time! I waited for a guy at MTR (Chris)after you left and the T-storms persuaded us to spend a night at the ranch and the rain stopped us from catching up to you at Sapphire Lake. I summitted around 10:30am on the 7th. Again congrats and fantastic photos.