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Adventure to the East Side of the Sierra with Mom Day 1: Saddlebag Lake to Rock Creek Lake

My mom and I headed out for a 4-day adventure at Rock Creek Lake, just south of Mammoth Lakes on the eastern side of the Sierra. Our plan was to hike, fish, read and relax. Each day was unique so I decided to break the Blog posts up by each day. So, this is the first of four blogs about our adventures along the way and at Rock Creek Lake.

Where: Inyo National Forest
Distance: .5 Miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation Range: 10,120′ – 10,144′
Date: September 15, 2014
Maps: Falls Ridge Topographic Quad

Heading east over Tioga Pass, we made a stop at Saddlebag Lake. Mom had never taken the water taxi across the lake and I just knew it would be fun to have a picnic lunch at Greenstone Lake, a short hike above Saddlebag Lake.

We all loaded up, including Sally, on the water taxi that is operated by Saddlebag Lake Resort, and headed over on a slightly breezy trip. It was a beautiful ride, looking at the mountains that surround the lake, and watching white puffy clouds cast their shadows over them.

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 2

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 3

After safely landing at the other side of Saddlebag Lake, we took a short hike up to Greenstone Lake.

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 4

We had made sandwiches the night before, along with a few other goodies to bring for our picnic lunch. Mom had one of her favorite sandwiches, pastrami and it was on that really good two-toned swirl rye bread from Raley’s. I had a ham sandwich. An apple and one of the new KIND Bars, Caramel Almond and Sea Salt, rounded out the feast. Unfortunately Sally got diddly.

My mom doesn’t usually wear her baseball cap backwards but she discovered that it stayed on better in that breeze and she could see better. She wanted me to tell you that.

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 5

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 6

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 8

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 9

Greenstone Lake gets its name from the beautiful greenish cast of the water. This picture shows that color off perfectly!

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Looking back toward Saddlebag Lake.

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 11

We returned across the lake and drove down to Rock Creek, stopping in Mammoth Lakes along the way to top off the gas tank. After checking into our little cabin at Rock Creek Lodge and unpacking the car, I headed down to Rock Creek for some fishing. I caught 3 nice ones, two of them over 13 inches, within a half hour. Mom told me to go back and get one more so we could have two a piece for dinner. So that is what I did! She fried them up in her famous cornmeal and flour coating. Mmmmmm!

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 12

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 13

Saddlebag Lake Resort is scheduled to close on September 28, so there isn’t much time this year to get a water taxi ride in but there is always next year! You can always walk along the trail beside Saddlebag Lake to get up to Greenstone Lake and many others in this area.

Adventure to the East Side of the Sierras 14Sources:

http://www.saddlebaglakeresort.com/
http://rockcreeklodge.com/

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