I am a intermidiate mountaineer, I climbed Mt. Whitney in 2000 when I was only 14 yrs old. I did it in 3 days which was way to short. I went to base camp the first day, then the 2nd I went to the top and back down to base camp. Then the 3rd day I hiked out. I recommend if you do the regular route to stay the first night at the lake before basecamp, and make it a 4 day trip. The climb up to base camp is the hardest part, and the longest. It has lots of switchbacks and you gain almost 4000ft in elevation. Make sure your pack is light, it helps! Base camp is pretty nice, there is a lake you can swim in, but it is pretty cold and you can pump your water from it. The bathroom facilitiy is just an outhouse. The hike from basecamp to the summit isn’t too bad, just rocky and a lot of switchbacks. The view from the top is amazing. Guitar lake is right behind you and is a pretty cool sight to see. I felt a little light headed and the wind picked up so I came down after a few pictures and signing the book. I didn’t have enough water comming down, so I recommend you bring like a 2L cammelback or somthin. After I got down back to basecamp I felt much better, my altitude sickness went away and I slept good that night. I recommend if your comming from sea level to bring some diomox (medicine for altitude sickness) and take it when you get to basecamp. I didnt get any sleep the first night and diomox would have been a life saver. Mt. Whitney is a great hike and definatly worth it. If your ever thinking about it you should just go ahead and do it.