Eastside exits are almost always better; the only real exceptions are from the south fork of the San Joaquin and Mono Creek where eastside exits are much longer than those to the west.
I wouldn't count on an immediate ride from any of the southern eastside passes with the exception of Kearsarge. People do come and go but not daily (though cell service on Verizon should be good at most of those trailheads). Although the "terrible four" (Taboose, Sawmill, Baxter, Shephard) can all be done as day hikes (up and back), they are fairly serious undertakings for the average hiker.
You can pretty much count on regular traffic from trailheads below the following eastside passes; Mammoth, Duck, McGee, Mono, Piute, Lamarck Col, Bishop and Kearsarge.
Walk the Sky: Following the John Muir Trail
--- In johnmuirtrail@ yahoogroups. com, Jim Underwood <underwoodjjd@ ...> wrote:
> Has anyone taken some time to determine some contingency planning re: potential exit routes (other than the obvious resupply points) in the event of a medical emergency, etc.? If so, I'd appreciate some advice. Looking to work this info into my maps. I'd esp like to determine some good points of exit at lower elevation in the event there is any serious AMS issues and a need arose to get lower and exit.
> I am not sure if the Harrison maps are sufficient for this purpose or if another overlay map would be better (any suggestions if so, please). Thanks.