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  1. #1
    Registered User wcgornto's Avatar
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    Default Let's talk about Number 2

    I hiked up Mount Whitney in 2007 and needed a WAG bag to carry out my poop. I presume the requirement to use a WAG bag is still in place. So, for a SOBO JMT hiker, do I need to carry the WAG bag from my starting point or can I acquire one along the way (Muir Trail Ranch for instance)? Is WAG bag required anywhere else other than the Whitney Zone?

    Thanks.

  2. #2

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    Probably can get one at any ranger station along the trail. Crabtree meadow ranger station perhaps. I think it's for any "not good for cathole" areas. High mountain passes above treeline/fragile tundra/high use areas. But not completely sure.

  3. #3
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    Interesting, not something I'd considered. For PCT thru-hikers, climbing Whitney is a one-day side trip; one camps at Guitar lake, then it's a steady climb up to the top with just a ~day hike sort of very light pack and back down again. I doubt that many folks in that situation have the #2 issue (I didn't at any rate). Obtaining and carrying a blue bag didn't occur to me, though of course it would make sense. Some thru's, however, go straight from Kennedy Meadows, climb Whitney en route, and blast on to VVR with no resupply in between. Quite a long time to carry your poop in that scenario!
    Gadget
    PCT: 2008 NOBO, AT: 2010 NOBO, CDT: 2011 SOBO, PNT: 2014+2016

  4. #4
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    When I went thru on the PCT in 2009 there were (un-used) wag bags in the bear locker in Crabtree meadows.
    There is also a privy in Crabtree meadows near the ranger station.
    So a southbound JMT hiker could "make a deposit" at crabtree meadows at the privy and summit Whitney and presumaby make it out to Whitney Portal a day later before another "deposit" was neccesary.
    A funny story about those wag bags..
    Socks and i stayed at Crabtree meadows, planning an early morning summit run on Whitney. We got up early and as we passed the Ranger station we noticed a dozen presumably used wag bags rolled up on the Ranger's porch!
    I guess it's more sad than funny.
    I suppose the correct thing to do, if you are a JMT hiker finishing up, is carry the wag bag up to the highest point in the lower 48 at 14,494, use the bag, then carry it all the way down to Whitney portal.
    Hey you could probably sell the sucker on E-bay!
    Headed in to town.. You gotta rock the down! -fellow hikers mantra

  5. #5
    13-45 Section Hiker Trash
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    I'm hoping to do the JMT in the next year or two, and was wondering the same thing. I have read that Guitar Lake is the common point for camping the night before summitting Whitney and leaving out via the portal. So is the area around Guitar Lake "set up" for cathole style pooing (sorry, but I just made myself laugh), or do you need the bag there?

    Quote Originally Posted by Iceaxe View Post
    Hey you could probably sell the sucker on E-bay!
    Make sure you autograph it (the bag that is), and it might bring a higher bid

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by wcgornto View Post
    I hiked up Mount Whitney in 2007 and needed a WAG bag to carry out my poop. I presume the requirement to use a WAG bag is still in place. So, for a SOBO JMT hiker, do I need to carry the WAG bag from my starting point or can I acquire one along the way (Muir Trail Ranch for instance)? Is WAG bag required anywhere else other than the Whitney Zone?

    Thanks.
    wag bags only needed in the Whitney Zone. Southbound, you pick them up at Crabtree Ranger Station - right on the trail where you'd leave the JMT to go to the ranger station is a plastic bin willed with bags to take.

    Much easier in that direction, because heading north, you're supposed to pack any used wag bag to where you can discard it (Muir Ranch, I guess).

    this is a constant discussion item on the Whitney Portal Store and Whitneyzone forums. Go search these sites and knock yourself out with all the poop talk

  7. #7

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    Hiked the JMT in 2011. There was a Wag Bag bin at the junction of 2 trails. I don't have my map in front of me...we were hiking NOBO and took the first trail off the PCT towards Guitar Lake that passes by the ranger station. When that trail met up with the JMT, there was the bin of Wag Bags.

    We did take a picture of the bin as it had instructions on the lid that said: "For Use from Guitar Lake to Whitney Portal. Use only if existing Whitney Portal."

    Our journal can be found here: http://www.trailjournals.com/entry.cfm?trailname=12749
    Video: http://www.youtube.com/user/royalusa/videos

    It was a wonderful trip. We highly recommend it. Have fun!
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  8. #8
    Registered User RossSFCA's Avatar
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    I hiked the JMT SoBo from Yosemite to Whitney in July/August 2011. I did my last resupply at Muir Trail Ranch (which made my pack pretty full of food, etc.). Theoretically, you could ship yourself a WAG bag, but they are provided by the park service. I picked up the WAG bag at Crabtree, in a tub placed on the trail by the Crabtree ranger. There was a bit of a climb from that point up to my camp for the night at Guitar Lake. It was okay to bury your waste at that spot.

    The next day was a long day for me. I think I started climbing up from Guitar Lake around 7 am. I hit the summit of Whitney around 1 pm, then started the long descent to the Whitney Portal, where I arrived after 7 pm (I think, as I hitched a ride from a Trail Angel who got me down to Lone Pine between 8 - 9 pm).

    Aside from Number 1, I think I "held it" that day until I got to my hotel room, so I never used the WAG bag.

    I know that people leave clutter along the trail... wrappers, tissues. I am embarrassed to say that I lost one of those cheap-o digital watches near Evolution when the strap broke. I try my best to honor the Leave No Trace ideals, but I know that I stepped on my share of trail-side plant life to avoid ankle deep mud. However, I was disgusted by the FULL WAG bags that people left at the top of Mt. Whitney and down the Whitney Portal side of the mountain (which makes me believe they were not thru-hikers, but possibly day-hikers). I did not see any WAG bags on the Guitar Lake side of Whitney, just sayin'. With all due respect to day-hikers, they are probably not accustomed to pooping at 13,000 feet and did not have to carry their waste / trash / litter around with them. However, I thought it was really gross that people would fill the bags and not have the decency to carry it OUT with them. Really gross.

    ALL THAT TO SAY... by the time you get to Whitney, you will be so elated you are finished with the JMT, you will probably not want to go Number 2 until you get off the mountain. BUT, you will be fine. Bags are provided. If you are concerned, ship yourself one, but that is just one more thing to take up space in your pack for those last 10 days.


    Ross/DirtyGirl
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    DirtyGirl
    2012 NoBo AT Thru-Hiker
    (and an incredibly proud 2011 SoBo JMT Thru-Hiker... I did it!!)

    Ross Hayduk
    San Francisco, CA

    www.hikerosshike.org

  9. #9
    Registered User schnikel's Avatar
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    Helmuth is right. There is a bin right on the trail by the ranger station to pick one up. There are to be used for any #2's in the mt. Whitney area, not just where a cat hole is not possible. When I hiked the JMT this summer I grabed one but didn't have to use it. Being on my last day on the JMT, summiting Mt. Whitney and the thought of food and beverage 7000 ft below me was enough on my mind!
    Schnikel

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