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Mount Whitney, California

Mt Whitney is the highest peak in lower 48 states. The hike to me is more of a physical challenge than a photographing trip.


People on the Internet recommended Canon 24-105 lens and I took the advice. However, in retrospect I think 17-40 lens are a better option. 24-105 is just not wide enough to shoot reflections of mountains in the lake at Trail Camp. 17-40 is also lighter. I dont see 70-200 is needed at all.

Overnight camping vs day hike

We camped at Trail Camp, and summitted on the second day, then backed down to the parking lot on the same day. There are many discussions regarding camping vs day hike. In my opinion, the only advantage of camping overnight is to give hikers more time to acclimate high altitude. Lugging the camping gears on the second day all the way down after summitting is very exhausting.

Photo spots

At Trail Camp, you will see a wall of mountains facing the east. At sunrise, the mountains will be lit in red and there are perfect reflections in the lake. This is a good photo spot. At sunset, however, they are backlit. I do not see there is a good photo opportunity there, except at the spot about half mile before Trail Camp, when the last light hits the mountains.

In my opinion, the best photography spots are at Whitney Pass and shortly after. It also has very nice views as you approach the peak. Waiting for sunrise or sunset there, however, would be quite challenging because you are at the middle of nowhere - there is no water or a flat surface to camp.

Sunrise at Trail Camp, Mount Whitney, California

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Sunrise at Trail Camp

Reflected Mountains at Trail Camp, Mount Whitney, California

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Reflected Mountains at Trail Camp

Whitney Pass, Mount Whitney, California

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Whitney Pass

Near to the Top, Mount Whitney, California

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Near to the Top

We Made it!, Mount Whitney, California

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We Made it!

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