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Mt Whitney Challenge

Essential Items
• Solid Hiking Boots - Boots should have high ankle support with a solid Vibram®, or equivalent, sole. Gore Tex®, or other waterproofing, is recommended to have for wet days as well as added insulation. Be sure to break your boots in at least 4 WEEKS prior to departure. Additionally, bring a spare set of laces.
• Day Pack –The most important things to look for if you need to purchase one are size (30L is good), hydration pack compatibility, hip and chest straps, frameless, good padding on shoulder straps and bottle holders.
• Water/Wind proof Jacket - Your water/windproof jacket is your outer water repellent layer. Gore Tex, seam-sealed is recommended as well as a hood for added warmth.
• Water/Wind proof Pants – Your water/wind proof pants will be worn during inclement weather. These pants are essential for warmth and should be Gore Tex lined and have lower leg zips.
• 2 duffel bags – One we will leave at the hotel in Lone Pine to store non-essential gear when on the mountain (clean clothes for changing when off the mountain and for onward travel) and the other for carriage by the mules when hiking

Things to Keep in Mind about the Essentials
Look for items that will add less volume to your overall pack. We will be using mules to carry our equipment however they are limited in the amount each can carry. Heavy synthetic materials will be very limiting and could cause issues when packing up for the hike. If you have any questions about an item you currently own please call, or bring it to a preparation hike, and we can discuss it. If you have any questions about an item you currently own please call (858) 356-9411.
Clothing & Layering
• 2 pairs synthetic warm weather trekking socks - These socks are for trekking in the warmest part of the day since they are made of a Coolmax® fabric. What is Coolmax®? - CoolMax® wicks moisture, dries quickly and breathes well, keeping your feet dry and preventing blisters.
• 2 pairs heavier synthetic or wool blend socks - Your wool socks are ideal for around camp when the temperature drops as well as on cold mornings. Merino wool is very comfortable and dries quickly with fewer odors than synthetic blends.
• 1 pairs long underwear top - This will be your base layer for colder mornings, evenings, and days where the temperature drops considerably. The material is lightweight, tight fitting, moisture wicking, and comfortable. • 1 pairs long underwear bottom - This will be your bottom base layer for colder mornings, evenings, and days when the temperature drops considerably. The material is lightweight, tight fitting, moisture wicking, and comfortable.
• Warm pants - These pants are ideal for evenings around the camp and cold days on the trail. Typically made of lightweight fleece, and Wind Pro material, these pants should offer the added warmth in case of cold nights or high winds.
• Fleece Top - This Polartec® 200 weight top will provide added warmth during the evenings as well as on cold morning starts. Please look for fleece material and stay away from cotton sweatshirts. Ideally, this item is worn over the thermal base layer and underneath your water/wind proof jacket.
• 2 pairs Shorts/Pants for Hiking- These convertible shorts/pants will be what we hike in every day. They should be of a lightweight, quick drying nylon material. Some come with UPF protection and mosquito protection.
• 2 pairs long or short sleeve shirts for the trail - Your trekking shirt is what we should wear early in the climb in warmer climates. The shirt is moisture wicking, light weight, and designed for multi-day hikes.
• Mid-Layer Top - This shirt is a long sleeve version of the one provided above. The long sleeve trail shirt offers added warmth, more protection from the sun, and an additional layer for evenings and early morning starts.
• Warm Hat - This fleece or wool hat is ideal for evenings and will be valuable in the event of cold weather and temperatures on the summit. The hat should be tight fitting with minimal loose ends.
• Lightweight Gloves - Fleece gloves are essential. Look for gloves that are Polartec® 200 weight with a leather reinforced palm. For more protection wind proofing is available and will add an extra layer of warmth.
• Sun hat – Your sun hat should be worn at the lower camps and should provide ample coverage for the face. A full brimmed hat is good for added shade and increased sun protection. Additionally, a neck scarf should also be considered to protect the back of the neck.
• Sun Glasses – Your sun glasses should have 100% UV protection and should reduce glare as well as visible light. The frames should be lightweight with a wrap-around design for enhanced grip and staying power.
Things to Keep In Mind for Clothing
Less is more!!! It is important to bring the essential gear discussed above, but it is more important to refrain from bringing items that are not recommended. Items to stay away from are cotton socks, jeans, multiple pairs of shoes, and heavy sweatshirts. Look for items that are moisture wicking and quick drying fabrics as opposed to cotton fabrics.
Additional Items
• Head Lamp- Petzl® and Black Diamond® make several models of small and efficient head lamps. Look for ones that have multiple lighting levels, LED bulbs and uses AAA batteries.
* Please bring at least 1 set of spare batteries.
• Water shoes (Teva, Crocs, Sandals) - These are great for around camp and in the kayaks. We recommend closed toe and straps for getting in and out of the boats.
• Hydrator - Hydrators are ideal when hiking for several hours because they enable you to drink slowly and frequently. 2-3 liters is a good size and should fit easily into your pack. All Camelbaks® come with a bite valve, or on/off switch, as well as a large access port for filling.
• Bug Spray - DEET based products work well and we find that the spray on versions last longer and are less messy. 4-6 ounce repellents that are perspiration and splash resistant are great.
• Sun Screen - 30 SPF or higher is recommended as well as water proof and sweat proof. 8 ounces will be plenty and we typically carry one with 45+ SPF for our faces and a 30 SPF for other exposed areas. Banana Boat, REI, Kinesis and All Terrain are good options.
• Wide mouth water bottle - A 1 liter water bottle is essential for hydrating at lunch, around the camp, and refilling throughout the day. Stay away from glass and heavy metals and look for lexan® for durability.
• Pillow– A Thermarest® pillow that compresses down or folds into itself is ideal. A good benchmark for size and weight are 18 X 14 inches and 9 ounces total.
• 2 Dry Bags - A 20 liter + dry bag is great for ensuring your personal items are safe in case of rain as well as when we are on the water. Cameras, wallets, money, and any other valuables can be kept dry at all times.
• Pack Cover - The pack cover is an additional item we recommend everyone carry in case we encounter heavy rains. The pack cover should have a drawstring cord and elastic edges to fit firmly over your bag. A 40 liter cover will work well on any day pack.
• Trekking Poles - Collapsible poles are great for steep downhill terrain and assistance up hill. If you have knee problems they reduce the impact on your joints by 20-30%. A nice soft foam grip will help prevent blisters and the ones with an aluminum shaft are durable and light weight.
• Camp Towel - the camp towel should be of a polyester nylon blend that dries quickly and compacts tightly in your pack. The large (50 X 27 inches) is a good size and can be used to wash up at the end of the day. Stay away from house or beach towels.
Optional Items
• Camera
• Paperback book
• Journal with pen or pencil
• Person First Aid Kit (band aids, mole skin or second skin, Ibuprofen, Aspirin)
• Hand sanitizer
• Sani-wipes – These should be used for using the bathroom as they have anti-bacteria in them and are bio-degradable
• Bandanna
• Flavored chocolate/energy bars for snacks
• 2 extra garbage bags for waterproofing and separating dirty laundry
• Ear plugs
• IPod or MP3 player
• Water-flavoring to mask the iodine taste in the purified water (Cytomax or Endurox)

Layering Information
In general, there are four types of layers. We will be using the first three for the Mt. Whitney climb however, if you venture into higher altitudes or colder climates you will need to have the super insulation layer.
Base Layer: The task of the base layer is to maintain a dry and comfortable microclimate next to your skin. The base layer will therefore absorb all the moisture from your skin and then spread it out over the surface of the base layer where it will be evaporated via the other clothing layers. Typical base layer fabrics are: CoolMax®, Polartec® PowerDry®, Wool, Patagonia®Capilene®.
Insulation Layer(s): This layer provides more warmth if the base layer and the shell layer do not provide enough insulation on their own. It traps small pockets of air in the fabric the insulation layer is made of which slows down the loss of heat. Typical insulation fabrics are: Polartec® Classics®,Berber pile, and Windstopper®.
Shell Layer: The shell layer provides protection from wind, rain, sleet, and snow, without allowing the build-up of condensation inside the clothing system. It protects while allowing moisture vapor to pass through. Shell fabrics are Gore-Tex, Hyvent, Aqua-Dry, and Dri-Lite.
'Super' Insulation Layer: It is enough for most people to have the first three layers. However, in extremely cold conditions, you will need to add a large amount of insulation as a fourth layer. Down and Polarguard can both be used for this layer. This layer is either worn as a shell layer or underneath the shell layer for added warmth on summit bids or high camps.