Warning to all: there is no good place to ford Lake MacDonald Creek. This is a there and back trail, but there are human markers after the official trail ends, and one can see Going-to-the-Sun road across the river. Buuuuut there’s no way to get across.
I set off for the weekend by myself, having borrowed a proper backpack and a tent. I had a little trepidation about going entirely by myself, but I was excited to get away and didn’t want to waste a time because other people didn’t want to come with me! I figured that this would be a nice easy trail to start off with despite my heavy backpack, and hiked part of the way along John’s Lake trail to get to the trailhead. However, I’d fallen and bruised my knee pretty badly on Redgap Pass the day prior and though it hadn’t been terribly bad, it begun hurting like hell just before the end of the Lake MacDonald Creek trail.
As such, I thought it would be a good idea to skip the back part of the trail and just hitchhike, especially since I was planning to do climb almost 10,000 feet–and back down–in the coming two days. I spent about half an hour clambering around the off trail path looking for a safe place to forge, but found none. Grumpily, I limped back. Big shout out to the people who picked me up; hithchiking was much nicer than hiking the three miles to camp, and I ended up arriving just as dark fell.