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Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

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Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby dougieb » Wed Apr 13, 2016 8:24 am

Happy Spring everyone!

I'm marking out my calendar for trips this year and I'll be heading up the north fork of the San Joaquin, Miter Basin, Wind Rivers and then a trip at the beginning of September which is where I'm hoping for some input.

I've wanted to see the lakes east of Finger Peak as well as lake 10,232 for some time now. Ive looked at a few different approaches to get there and I'm hoping someone with experience can shed some light. I will be with some older folks (my parents) so I'm limited to 8-12 miles depending on terrain and we have 5 or 6 days.

I've looked at entering from Rancheria area then up through blue canyon and taking blue canyon pass. Or entering at Maxon trailhead, heading to portal lake and then taking either finger col, or mantle and then blue canyon. Then the last option is to go from florence, head up the canyon to martha lake and go up and over that section, down to 10232 and do day trips from there.

I'm looking for the least technical pass to get down there. We are good with cross country route finding and navigation but would like to avoid exposure becauase my parents would have some trouble with class 3 or anything that requires them to use their hands. Ive taken them into bear lakes basin and lamark col and that was ok. If you have any advice to offer I'd appreciate it. This forum and all of the good adventurous spirits on here keep me sane when I can't get to the mountains. Thanks in advance!



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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby maverick » Wed Apr 13, 2016 2:52 pm

Hi Doug,

Would recommend taking the ferry over Florence, then take the JMT to South Fork San Joaquin Trail to Martha Lake>Reinstein Pass>Lake 10232, use as a basecamp.
It is around 21 miles of hiking to Martha Lake when you including the ferry, but they are relatively easy trail miles compared to your alternatives, and therefore will get you to your destination the quickest, this is especially important with the limited amount of days your group has available and the your daily mileage limitations.
The most difficult part of the Martha Lake to Lake 10232 route is the passes southern side to Lake 10232 due to the small run outs (cliffs), slabs, and boulders that need to be negotiated, but much can be avoided with proper navigation, it is a relatively moderate class 2 pass.
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby dougieb » Wed Apr 13, 2016 8:01 pm

Maverick,
Thanks for the suggestion. I think I'm going to go for it and finally try to get out there. I think Goddard Canyon looks like a neat place to explore too. I am so excited to get out there! I owe everyone a trip report one of these days so I promise I'll share one after my next trip. :wink: Now I just have to try to get a permit for entrance at Florence... I have to mail it in!? eeek
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby Wandering Daisy » Wed Apr 13, 2016 8:27 pm

IF your parents have done some off-trail travel, you probably will be OK. If not, it may take 3 full days to reach your destination. I did the route several years back. Made it nearly to Martha Lake on first day, but it was a rough day. There is plenty of camping along the way to Martha Lake. More limited camping between Martha Lake and the first big lake on Goddard Creek. The terrain is more tricky than it looks on the map. The lake under Finger Peak is exceptional. I will try to post a photo when I get back home (am on a trip now).

Worst case, even if you do not make your destination, it is beautiful route. THe ride across Florence Lake is scenic. Just be sure you get back in time for the last boat out. Also, if late season be sure the boat taxi is still running and what the schedule is. I think they run fewer boats the later the season.
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby Wandering Daisy » Wed Apr 13, 2016 8:35 pm

Sorry I missed the part that your parents have done some off-trail. I think they may have to use hands now and then, and there are small cliffs but no major exposure. In my experience, the route is a bit more difficult than Lamarck Col. Route finding is certainly more difficult, but that would be your job. The area is significantly more remote- more "psychologically" difficult. I did it in my 60's so tell your parents that if they get discouraged. We old folks still can do this kind of stuff.
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby Cross Country » Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:42 am

Lake 10
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby Cross Country » Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:45 am

Finger Pass
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby mort » Sat Apr 16, 2016 6:07 pm

Hi Doug,
Consider something like this:
Sometime in the 1980's my brother, his girlfriend, me & my girlfriend made a loop out of Wishon Resevoir. First night at Halfmoon Lake or about. The first couple days are not in wilderness so you hike with cows. But the scenery is spectacular, granite dome lands but up to their shoulders in forest. We aimed up Bench Valley on through the Six Shooter, Bullet and Holster Lakes, I recall a pretty good use trail past the last water. By the way there are very peculiar small beaches at those lakes, not sand but teensy clam shells. We crossed over what is called Gunsight Pass. Just sighting Lake Confusion. Down to the South Fork San Joaquin. This was fairly easy, with those diagonal grassy ledges switch-backing down, but trend north. We camped in a packer site just about where the creek from Martha Lake joins at about 10,200 ft elevation. We went over Reinstein Pass in light hail. Camped below the big lake about 10,000 ft. We contoured around to the creek that flows below Finger Col. Stayed in the lower lake basin. The lakes are very shallow, with odd marking on the bottom. Over the col to Cathedral Lake. Finger Col is scree near the top, on the east ascent we found a trail right over the top.
We kept mileage to 6 to 8 a day and from the day at the San Joaquin River to Portal Lake on the last day we had been over 10,000 ft for 4 days. None of the passes or other cross county was difficult, we found use trails on both sides of Gunsight Pass and Finger Col. I don't recall Reinstein as being hard, it was cold and we just wanted to get out of the wind.
Somewhere I should have 24 or 48 prints, and my brother might have some slides. Maybe I'll make a trip report when I get it all scanned.
If I find the time I'll do it again.
-mort
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby giantbrookie » Mon Apr 18, 2016 7:53 am

I would agree with WD that the approach from Florence is easiest and should be just fine for your group.

For a more scenic, but slightly more difficult, option, entry via Lamarck Col (from North L.) is the way to go because you jump right off into high alpine country from more or less the first step. The easiest of the Lamarck Col. options (to 10232) would be to go Lamarck Col to Evolution Basin then to Davis Lake, then to Martha, then over Reinstein Col. My wife and I did this as our return route from 10232. Our entry route was more difficult (Wanda Pass-Ionian Basin-10232).

The approach via Mantle and Blue Canyon Passes is certainly technically easy (with minor route finding to avoid the worst talus on the N side of Blue Canyon Pass) but the approach to Blue Canyon is very long and not nearly as scenic as going from Florence, let alone Lamarck Col. There is a creative way to make the Mantle Pass-Blue Canyon approach much much shorter, which is to go nearly 100 percent off trail from Hoffman Mtn (Above Wishon Res). This is technically easy (class 2 and less) but it requires consistently good route finding in tree-covered terrain (difficult line-of-sight for navigation) for many miles. This requires less than half the normal distance to get to Mantle Pass compared to "standard trailheads" (ie places where one parks and a trail begins--no trail starts from Hoffman Mtn).
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby SSSdave » Mon Apr 18, 2016 9:03 am

reads like a beater
5 days...not enough time to do anything but hike
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby Jimr » Mon Apr 18, 2016 9:35 am

I agree with Dave. Not enough time, given the restraints, to do anything but hike. I've hiked into that area from Hell For Sure pass and from Finger Col. 3 days in.
What?!
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Re: Upper Goddard Creek Lakes

Postby sekihiker » Mon Apr 18, 2016 12:17 pm

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