The USA’s tallest point rises slightly right of center, set back from peaks that look taller from below. My wife Sue snapped this view of Mount Whitney on March 11 from our site in the rustic Portuguese Joe Campground, just off the Whitney Portal Road west of Lone Pine, California. I had a lump in my throat as I gazed up and recalled my Whitney summitting in August 2021 with fellow hikers on the John Muir Trail. Whitney and the JMT are the greatest trekking accomplishments of my nearly 70 years. What’s next?
From the never-thought-I’d-do-this department: In August 2021, I stood atop California’s Mount Whitney at 14,505 feet, the highest point in the continental USA, as part of my 243-mile trek on the John Muir Trail. Seven months later, I stood at the USA’s lowest point, 282 feet below sea level, at Death Valley, as part of my cross-country RV adventure. Just 106 miles separates the two places.