I was greeted in the morning with a beautiful sunrise across Garnet Lake, enough to motivate and head out on the trail by 7:45am. After the climb out of Garnet Lake, you are greeted with a neat view of the Minarets, and then down a really nice hike along Shadow Creek (a lot of really nice campsite options along Shadow Creek). You are then rewarded with Shadow Lake, at this time of day, a beautiful and serene setting.
On the climb up from Shadow Lake, I started hiking with Carly from Revelstoke, BC, and quite the adventurer (http://manymilesmiles.blogspot.ca). Hearing her stories and methods really helped pass the time hiking down to Devils Postpile and Reds Meadow Resort (this section of the trail is not that scenic), and before long, 10 miles had passed and it was only a little bit after Noon!
After a couple more miles, you come across Devils Postpile, which is a really neat rock formation just off the trail (and on the way to Reds Meadow Resort). Essentially, what happened was the conditions were perfect for lava to cooled slowly and evenly and take on the ideal hexagonal shape. There is a little path around the formations. Well worth the side trip.
Reds Meadow Resort is a little cabin and camping property close by that has bus service to Mammoth Lakes. More importantly, it has a restaurant, camp store, showers, laundry and able to take resupply buckets, which make it a popular stop for JMT hikers. I took advantage with a shower and dinner (cheeseburger, milkshake and pie!) and camped out at the backpackers campsite within the campground with a dozen other JMT hikers. There was great cell service, as well, so I was able to check in with Ann. The shower was especially nice!