Garnet Lake
Hike From Donohue Pass to Reds Meadows
And Some Of My Favorite Pictures Of The Trip
Mule at Reds Meadows, feet in corral, front feet in
feed trough, eating outside the box
in the
the café
I have chosen to show a bunch of pictures for this
part of the hike as I think they are my favorites for the
first half of the JMT. As we came down from Donohue
Pass we met a lot of mosquitoes on a very personal
level. We had a hard time stopping as they wanted
lunch every time we stopped. The trail headed down
and there was a lot of water running down the creek.
(33, 34) I was glad I was hiking in the direction I was,
as it was  very steep down hill in several places. The
downhill stopped at the Rush Creek Trail.
 (35) was at
the trail junction for Rush Creek.  Travel was rocky
but not bad.  We passes a bunch of scouts hiking up
and asked them how it was getting over Island Pass.
They said it wasn't to bad.  We kept thinking we were
about to the top of the pass, and the trail just kept on
going.  From Rush Creek to Island Pass is only 1.2
miles, but was a 600 foot climb. We were a little tired,
so it was not as easy as we had hoped.  I think we
had worn ourselves out
going to far before breakfast. We were definitely
ready for some lunch and a break.
We stopped for lunch and when I looked over at Lisa and Emily, Lisa had found a
position showing how she felt. (36)  She laid there for about a half hour.  Tom and Geoff
found a more comfortable position.  Tom started having some cramping in his back and
was using this rock for a massage. (37)  We hiked up over a little pass and started to see
Thousand Island Lake. It was so cool looking, (39) was the first good look we got. Emily
and Lisa were ahead of me going down the switchbacks. The lake was so cool looking
that we forgot how tired we were.  (40) was about 1/2 way down the side. We went along
and the lake disappeared over the hill and we thought we had seen the end of it.
We hiked up over a ridge and past
a small lake and up over an other
ridge and bingo, there was (43,44)
Thousand Island Lake again.  At
first I thought I had gotten to
Garnet Lake sooner than I thought
I would, but the reality eventually
sunk in that I was still at Thousand
Island.  I had real mixed emotions
about that.  The lake was pretty,
but I was tired. It had been a long
day. We have not been hiking as
fast as we planned and were not getting the rest we needed. It was wearing on me
mentally and physically.  I felt OK, no blisters, pulled muscles, sprained anything, I did
have a little pain in my knees and ankles, but I think that was from all of the down hill and
fatigue.  I had slightly rolled an ankle a couple of times, but didn't think that was the
problem. It was a little over a mile and a half to Garnet Lake, and was mostly downhill.  
Tom got there first again, and staked out a place to camp.  Some other campers were
there already, and others came. There was not much space, so some of the other
campers decided to hike on and camp on top of the next pass a couple of miles away. We
saw them the next day and they said there wasn't water up there but it was nicer place.
I did some more fishing. I had tried at
Thousand Island Lake, but the wind
had been blowing so hard that it was
really hard to fish. At Garnet Lake I
caught two  It was slow, but I caught
some, I hate it when I get skunked.  
Garnet Lake was pretty. Picture 45,
and the one at the top of this page (32)
 were taken there.  32 is actually two
pictures that I took and used a
computer program to stitch them
together. The only other pictures that I
have modified is the two bear pictures.
(55, 56) They were taken at night so I
lightened them. I'll tell about them later.
For breakfast today we tried
something new. We had what Tom
called Sponge Bob eggs. It was
freeze dried eggs in squares, with
bits of bacon. The first cup full was
OK, but I tried a second helping
and getting it all down was tough.
Then Tom wanted me to finish up
the 2 spoonfuls that were left. I did
but thought I was going to die.
my screen. Tom and Geoff finally came, Tom was having back problems so
they had stopped to try getting rid of the big knot in his back. We could see
where the girls were with the Rino and had them meet us at the sign in #54.
We walked to the rangers station and caught the shuttle to the store so we could get
our food stash. We caught the shuttle back to Reds Meadows Campground. My family
drove in to get the extra food. I took shower, it was hot. It was water out of the hot
springs and it is on or off, no temperature control.  I washed my laundry while I was at
it. I left my laundry on the picnic table.  We headed over to the cafe by the store for
dinner. (57) Coming out there was a bear trying to get into the dumpster. The camp
operators had some dogs the sent to chase the bear off. Winston yelled I want to pet it
                                                                          and took off after it. I went chasing
                                                                          Winston to slow him down, but did
                                                                          have my camera in my pocket. I took
                                                                          picture 55 before the bear took off. I
                                                                          got a couple of others while it was
                                                                          running, but then it went between 2
We cleaned up camp, I
was ready first, and
volunteered to get us all
water at a water fall that
we could see across the
lake. I took picture #45
from there. I used my
MSR water purifier that
uses salt and batteries to
make a solution that
purifies water like
chlorine does. It weighs
almost nothing, and
takes about 1 minute for
2 liters of water.
From the waterfall we hiked up a slope that we
thought would be a low pass, but it was a lot farther
than we hoped and was about 10,000 feet.  #s 46,
47 are at the top of the pass and down the back
side. Emily's knees were really giving her trouble now
She iced them with some snow, and we had a snack, then on we went.  The trail
was the typical roller coaster trail, nothing terribly bad. Everything was starting to
seem the same. Uphill switchbacks still sucked but they were just part of the day.  
Tom started to have some bad back cramps. We crossed the bridge shown in
#48, and headed over the next rise. We went past Shadow Lake  (49) without
stopping, and then hit an ugly uphill set of switchbacks up through some pines.
(50)  There was nothing living on the ground under these trees. The ground was
mostly dry, but had an occasional place where some water ran across it.  I
stopped an filled my water bottle, and felt like the mosquitoes filled themselves
with me.  We went over some rocks slopes and a bunch of switchbacks to get on
top. It is a little frustrating to be so high and not be able to see past the trees.
                                                                                          As we were approaching Rosalie Lake Tom needed to rest his back. We stopped,
but I decided to go on to Rosalie and fish.  (53) In my first 10 casts I caught 6 fish. I was still using a #4 brass Panther Martin. The other four
of my group found me there and Emily wanted to fish. (52)She had also bought a licence, but hadn't fished yet. I let her take my pole and
she caught a few. We worked our way down to the outlet (51) from the lake and Lisa and Emily both got their poles out and caught a fish or
two each.  Tom and Geoff had kept hiking. We found them at Glades Lake sitting in mosquito haven. They had not been there very .
long.We tried
fishing there,
but didn't see
any signs of
anything. It
looked pretty
shallow.  We
headed off
and caught
Tom and
Geoff part
way up the
We went
past, Geoff
was taking
some pictures
and they said they would
catch up. Usually they would
catch us in not much time,
but we didn't see them. We
waited for quite a while, but
no sign.  We kept trying to
reach them on the radio, but
nothing. Finally Lisa and
Emily wanted to go on, so I
sent them. We talked on the
Rino radios, so I could see
where Lisa was by looking at
JMT Trip Pictures
Hiking From:
JMT Trip Pictures
Hiking From:
trees and came right for me. (56)  Winston was standing behind me now. The bear charged
and got about 10 ft away and turned and ran to our left. I was glad. We rounded everyone
up and headed back to camp. Wen we got there the guys in the camp next to us said they
chased a bear out of our camp. I bet it was the same bear as he came in this direction. He
had gotten up on our table and knocked all of the bear canisters off the table, he walked
                               all over my laundry, and the only thing he found to eat was a few
                               sunflower seed that got left in a pack pocket. The pocket had been
                               ripped off the pack. My family left with Lisa and Emily to go to Nevada.