My longer breaks were between the summit and the portal, and at the portal itself. There's definitely no way to feel isolation on that stretch of trail, but there are a couple places where you can wander 50-100 yards off trail and avoid being stepped over every 5 minutes, at least.
I didn't see a single person hiking the Recreation Trail (a nice change of pace from the previous 8 miles), though you will obviously see some in the campgrounds you pass. Those campgrounds are probably your best rest spots on this 4mile stretch. I don't recall many other great options for lengthy rest breaks.
My knees were definitely getting a little tired near the end. But if you're hitchhiking anyway, you can wait til the last minute to decide if you're up for this little add-on. I suppose it would be more complicated if you have a car waiting for you at Whitney Portal.
One other thing I failed to mention: might want to make sure you have some sunscreen left. Those last two miles can get pretty warm/sunny depending on the time of day.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, Karpani <karpanilove@...> wrote:
> I'm glad you posted this info. I've never heard any of the JMTrs talk about it, and over the years I have spent some time in the Whitney Portal area, but never heard of this trail. I suppose all the locals know about it as one of their local day hikes. The way you describe it is cause for me to consider it as an option to finishing out the JMT, as you say, "not through the rear view mirror." I'm glad you did it, enjoyed it and shared it with us. After the never-ending descent from Whitney, how was it on your body as you continued to descend on foot from WP? How did you break up the space between Mt. Whitney and LP Campground?
> Thanks again for sharing.