1. Sean
    Sean May 12, 2015 at 8:49 am

    I stayed at the Shiloh Inn unexpectedly like 10 years ago. We were doing a camping/fishing trip up north of Bishop and a mother of a storm blew in. We didn’t think our tents could withstand the hail and winds so we packed up and headed into Mammoth Lakes and ended up at the Shiloh Inn. I have a distinct memory of watching the rain and hail pour down and the storm blow itself out while I sat in a sauna comfortable and happy.

    It was pleasantly memorable back then and it’s really great to hear it’s still a pleasant option.

  2. Richard
    Richard May 12, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    After weeks of trying to get a permit out of the valley with no luck I decide to look at alternatves. I’m flying into mammoth lakes Wednesday sept 9. Next day hitch to Devils pp start northbound to yosemite via jmt. Sunday afternoon catch yarts back to mammoth from the valley. Return to same hotel then next day hitch out to Devils pp southbound on jmt with exit whitney permit. Both separate permits. Unfortunately shuttles stop day before my hike…lil concerned about the altitude as I’m from north Florida. All my hikes are done -6,000′ on AT. I’m on a tight schedule and only have 15 days to hike it. I’m fine doing 15-17 mpd in southeast. I plan to keep my pack under 12 lbs with out food or water. Still trying to decide on my shelter set up. I use a solong6(2lb) and love it for me and my dog. Thinking about trying a tarp to save a lb or so since I plan to cowboy camp as you did. Should I try tarp or stick with the solong6?

  3. Wayne Fenton
    Wayne Fenton May 12, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    We stayed in Merced last summer and bought all our resupply gear from the local stores & supermarkets! It kept our costs down significantly as the motel rates in Merced were relatively low. Merced also has an Amtrak station and is a YARTS stop also.

    We did take our time and took 5 days to get to Tuolumne having had two very easy days around the Cathedral Lakes area (easily worth the slow pace). This allowed us to acclimatize a little easier.

    We flew in to SF from the UK and as such were straight from sea level. We have had experience of altitude before so we knew what to expect and how to manage that.

    If we had a greater budget then the Ahwahnee would be great. It was good enough for the Queen!

  4. mb
    mb May 13, 2015 at 7:52 am

    For those starting in yosemite valley, I think the altitude increase is gradual enough it wont matter for most. For some that that have issues, they might take greater precautions.

    typical for a fast person :

    night 1 in yosemite valley – 4000 ft
    night 2 at LYV (or not very far after on pass thru) – 6185 ft
    night 3 somewhere close to Tuolumne meadows 8600 ft max.
    night 4 somehwere near donahue pass – ~8000-10000

    This is a reasonable acclimation rate.

  5. Betty
    Betty May 18, 2015 at 4:43 am

    A different perspective on the comment “For some that that have issues, they might take greater precautions”:

    You can’t reliably predict from past high altitude experience whether you will have altitude issues, and thus need to take greater precautions. And if you find yourself experiencing even moderate high altitude sickness while on your JMT hike, you’ll probably regret not taking greater precautions to acclimatize in advance.

    Before my JMT hike, I had never experienced any altitude issues, despite hiking/camping at 10K+ altitudes a fair number of times, except for a minor issue with nausea starting at about 13,500 ft. on a Mt. Whitney hike.

    On the JMT, with a Glacier Point start and a permit-mandated night at LYV, I found myself suffering nausea and loss of appetite starting below 9,400 – and this continued for several days, from below the Sunrise High Sierra camp area until I resupplied in Mammoth and was able to start a course of Diamox, which made a difference very rapidly.

    The study that Dr. Ken Murray and others conducted at Mt. Whitney showed that the main risk factors for altitude sickness severe enough to keep people from summiting were: gender, age, and total number of hours spent over 10,000 ft. elevation during the two weeks before the summit attempt. (Perhaps surprisingly, females and older persons were at lower risk.) Obviously, the only one of those that we can control is the # of hours over 10,000 ft.

    Since I live in So. California, I easily could have timed my JMT training hikes on Mt. Baldy, San Jacinto and San Gorgonio to be within that two-week window, but as it happened, I did them too far in advance to be of optimal benefit in acclimatization for my JMT hike. I would change that for future hikes, and I also share Ray’s more gradual acclimatization preference. I loved my JMT thru-hike (and had NO issues on Forrester or Whitney), but would have had a lot more fun on those days in the Sunrise-to-Reds stretch without the nausea. And though Mammoth is sort of ugly, it is a great place to get last minute supplies and enjoy some excellent food while spending pre-JMT time at high altitude.

  6. Richard
    Richard June 23, 2015 at 3:31 am

    A friend and I are prepping for a JMT through hike in 2016 and are debating on June/July start vs your suggestion of Sept. Sept sounds good except concerns about water, lots of bugs etc. June July concerns about lots of snow. Love to hear from you and your readers. We hope to start applying the moment we can.

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