Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

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michaelzim
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Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by michaelzim » Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:03 pm

I'm hoping to get some help locating a "destination lake", where there is water noise or a waterfall, close enough to a potential camping spot to hear continually while staying there for some days. In other words, a 'water-noisy' stream would do fine though a waterfall would be optimal...as long as could be heard from a campsite - with the usual culprits of: some afternoon shade, flat enough ground for a tent, not lots of people, hopefully a view, etc.

Region I'm looking in is east of Lake Thomas Edison, or east of Florence Lake - the area north and south of the Mono Divide on Tom Harrison maps. The extension of Silver Divide would be northern edge, and Piute Canyon southern edge. I generally avoid the JMT/PCT as much as possible but it will probably be the main trail I have to use before branch off into the hills for more isolation.

I tried an advanced search here on HSTopix and came up with countless combos c/o "lakes/with/waterfalls" so that did not work. The human filter of members memories seems the way to go!
I am comfortable with extensive off trail hiking. Strongly prefer isolated base camps (where this hypothetical lake would hopefully be), though not out on super exposed bare granite way above the treeline.

Planned time of year is a couple of weeks from now in mid to late August. *[Will post a separate thread to see if any members may be out in same vicinity and want to chance a "walk-by meet-up" to say hello - would nice to meet some fellow HST'ers!].

Any help or ideas much appreciated. Thank you! ~ Michaelzim








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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by cgundersen » Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:26 pm

Hi Michael,
In this relatively low-snow year, things may not be as effusive as they were last year, but one of my all-time favorite waterfall lakes is that lovely lake just south of Reinstein col (lake 10232) on the western flanks of Ionian basin. It gets several ribbons of water tumbling into the lake that in big snow years can be deafening. Anyway, from Florence, it's possible to get all the way to Martha (if you push it; but that's not really necessary). From there it's a pretty easy hop over to 10232, and Reinstein keeps the crowds down. There is a cute peninsula on the western shore of the lake that is ample for camping. I've seen spectacular wildflower blooms on the surrounding hillsides, but they are probably muted this year, too. Regardless, from there you have great options for exploring Ionian or down toward Finger Peak. It's a magical place! Cameron

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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by michaelzim » Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:19 pm

Cameron... Well you will not know how "poignant" your choice of lake 10232 is, as it has been a whim of mine for some time to get to it. However, what I did not mention in my post was that I am 70 in a few weeks and my days of doing brutally long, fast hikes with a heavy inbound pack are sadly over. My daughter and I went to Portal, Pearl, Ambition, etc. lakes in Sept. 2017 and it took us two and a half days just to get to base at Pearl as kinda slow for the early parts of a trip due to pack weight, altitude adjustment, and plain old age.

In 2018 based at Disappointment Lake we looked down from the top of Red Mountain on Goddard Canyon and then southwards to Martha ..."Myweh", as they say in Zimbabwe, that is a LONG way and a helluva haul to get up to Martha then over to 10232 from the west - be it via Hell for Sure or over from the Blackcap Basin using Valor Pass or perhaps above Hummingbird Lake.
Your suggestion to go from Florence makes more sense but I still wonder how long it might take me as my limit is around 8 to 10 miles a day on the first few days of any trip where inevitable altitude gain is required. This more so when going solo and not sharing the load of one-off items like water filter, tent, cook-stove, etc.

Thanks for the info though and I will definitely mull it - especially if I can find a "closer side option" en route if realize I have bitten off more than I can chew once get going. 35 years ago would have been on this like a flash...Sigh!

Best ~ Michaelzim

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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by cgundersen » Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:30 pm

Hi Michael,
And, I belatedly realized that you are looking more to the North. That said, going that same route from Florence (toward Goddard Canyon) is VERY gentle elevation gain all the way to Goddard Canyon. Water flow at the junction with Piute Creek is pretty impressive, but also busy. The pig chute further up Goddard Canyon offers a wild sluice that would meet your criteria (with decent camping options). And, there are bona fide falls a bit further up the trail. And, the noise level near the Martha outlet would also do the trick. But, assuming that route is off the list, I'd plump in favor of the pounding water flow into 4th recess lake that is fed from the Snow Lakes. Or, plan B is to camp near the outlet of Vee Lake. There's enough space for one party there, and plenty of rumble, not to mention spectacular views of 7 Gables. In fact, I'd make Vee planA, because there's so much to see/do in the Bear Lake basin. And, it's pretty darn accessible from Edison without too much JMT frenzy. Otherwise, serious water falls that you can camp close to in that area just do not quickly come to mind. Maybe someone else has a candidate? Cameron

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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by giantbrookie » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:06 pm

The lake that comes to mind is Bighorn L. out of Edison. It has a very nice waterfall outlet that is audible from campsites in the outlet area. See my 2018 TR that included it (and a photo of the waterfall) at: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=18658.

Up French Canyon, I also recall that there is a nice waterfall downstream of the lowest Royce Lake.
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" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by LMBSGV » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:46 pm

I second Cameron's suggestion of Goddard Canyon, at least for this year. Other places I can think of I suspect won't be running hard enough to qualify for your criteria. While it's not a lake, the falls from N. Goddard Creek can be spectacular (see photo below). The falls at Fourth Recess are spectacular, but since the lake is a day's hike from the Mono Pass trailhead. Fourth Recess Lake gets a lot of people camping there.
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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by giantbrookie » Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:13 pm

michaelzim wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:19 pm
Cameron... Well you will not know how "poignant" your choice of lake 10232 is, as it has been a whim of mine for some time to get to it. However, what I did not mention in my post was that I am 70 in a few weeks and my days of doing brutally long, fast hikes with a heavy inbound pack are sadly over. My daughter and I went to Portal, Pearl, Ambition, etc. lakes in Sept. 2017 and it took us two and a half days just to get to base at Pearl as kinda slow for the early parts of a trip due to pack weight, altitude adjustment, and plain old age.
Well, after recommending Bighorn L. and Royce L., and reading this as someone in his early 60s...Gosh I don't want to see someone give up on their dreams. I figure getting older mostly means taking longer to get there. I figure a Florence L. entry (w ferry on a normal year) then to Martha, then over Reinstein Pass, gets you to 10232, which I will concur is a special place. Indeed I visited the place as a young person (34 going on 35) but having just been at Brown Bear L. and meeting a fellow in his 70s on at least one replaced hip...I don't want to sound too naive but I hate to give up on dreams. 10232 is indeed a special place (even if the fish are super small).
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" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Lakes with waterfalls??? - East of Edison or Florence L.

Post by michaelzim » Sun Aug 02, 2020 11:59 am

Thanks so much @cgundersen , @giantbrookie , and @LMBSGV for the great feedback all, and after I reply here will look more closely at your Silver Divide foray @giantbrookie as your father-daughter backpacking is very close to what I have been doing for many years. My daughter was my stalwart companion and avid lover of off trail adventures. I will miss her terribly, let alone her sharing the pack weight. We would have taken on the Lake 10232 challenge for sure, albeit slowly.

Mott Lake and that Silver Divide area had actually been my initial target, with possible switches over to base camp at Grinnell later c/o the passable looking divide there. An old timer once told me that Mott was so close to the stock-up point for JMT/PCT at Edison (Vermillion Resort) that it got very little traffic as was too close to stop at, either direction. Made sense to me, plus could go up if needed to Rosy Finch or Bighorn, etc. if "occupied".
Then my waterfall need came to the fore and my question here, though it looks like Bighorn may answer to that too?!

cgundersen & Cameron...I don't want to sound like some Prima Donna and really appreciate your suggestions for Goddard Canyon and Fourth Recess, etc. However, maybe I was being too brief in my "ideal requirements" list, as indeed one thing I do require for a longer stay base camp is not to be in a confined canyon. Big views and vistas are mandatory. Even long hikes in extended canyons are not my favorite as prefer to dip in and out of tree-line once get going. Goddard certainly would qualify as a long, confined canyon from the topo and view down into it c/o Red Mountain. It would have to be a transit route for Martha and then 10232 rather that a destination point.
Vee Lake on the other has a lot more of the right look to it, with extended day hiking options all around too. One question though - topo appears to show zero trees there, which would match the elevation as well. Does anyone recall? The light can get kinda intense hanging out for many days without relief from some shade. @mckee80 did a fantastic TR of that area in 2019 that inspired me greatly to get a new camera viewtopic.php?f=1&t=20072&hilit=mckee80+Trip+Report and recall Vee Lake was one of the stops therein. The views were very much up to what I seek for a base camp!

OK, maybe enough here as I tend to be too long winded (old school = half a century before "Tweets" were invented and considered a form of acceptable communication by humans). Any further ideas or elaborations much appreciated.

Best ~ Michaelzim

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