In Chapter XVI the history of Glenbrook is given in some detail. It is now, however, converted into a pleasure resort especially popular with residents of Nevada, and largely used by automobiles crossing the Sierras and passing around Lake Tahoe.

The Inn, and its veranda overlooking the Lake, is built with an eye to comfort and convenience. Every need for pleasure and recreation is arranged for. For those who enjoy privacy, cozy cottages are provided, around which beautiful wild flowers grow in wonderful profusion. The guests here are especially favored in that the Inn has its own ranch, dairy, poultry farm, fruit orchard and vegetable garden. The table, therefore, is abundantly provided, and everything is of known quality and brought in fresh daily.

Glenbrook Inn makes no pretense to be a fashionable resort. It especially invites those individuals and families who wish to be free from the exhausting "frivolities of fashion," to come and enjoy to the full Nature's simple charms, regardless of the city's conventions as to dress and fashion. Rest and recreation, amusement and recuperation are the key-notes. Simplicity of life, abundance of sleep, sufficiency of good food, tastefully served, the chief hours of the day spent in the open air, fishing, boating, swimming, trail-climbing, horseback-riding, driving or automobiling, - these bring health, renewed energy and the joy of life.

The specific pleasures provided at Glenbrook are varied. It is confessedly the best place for fishing on the Lake. During the season the fishermen from all the resorts at the south end of the Lake bring their patrons over in this direction. The Inn has its own fleet of gasoline launches and row boats, with experienced men to handle them, and it supplies fishing-tackle free, but those who wish to use the rod must bring that with them. As is explained in the chapter on fishing the trout of Lake Tahoe are taken both by rod and "jerk-line" trolling. Near Glenbrook, however, the rod can be used to greater advantage than anywhere else, and catches of from one-half to thirty pounds are of daily occurrence.

While promiscuous fishing is not allowed now in the famous Marlette Lake, eight miles away, the patrons of Glenbrook Inn can always secure permits, without any vexatious inquiries or delays, and there an abundance of gamey trout of various species are caught.

The bathing facilities here are exceptionally good. There is a long stretch of sandy beach, which extends far out into the water, thus ensuring both warmth and safety to children as well as adults.

In mountain and trail climbing Glenbrook has a field all its own. The ride or drive to Marlette Lake is a beautiful one, and the climb to Marlette Peak not arduous. The chief mountain peaks easily reached from Glenbrook are Dubliss, Edith, and Genoa Peaks, which not only afford the same wonderful and entrancing views of Lake Tahoe that one gains from Freel's, Mt. Tallac, Ellis and Watson's Peaks, but in addition lay before the entranced vision the wonderful Carson Valley, with Mt. Davidson and other historic peaks on the eastern horizon.

The drive along the shore by the famous Cave Rock to Lakeside Park or Tallac is one that can be enjoyed daily, and for those who like driving through and over tree-clad hills, surrounded by majestic mountains, the drive over the Carson road is enchanting.

It is at Glenbrook that the famous Shakspeare head is to be seen graphically described by John Vance Cheney, and quoted elsewhere (Chap. XVI).


Marlette Lake and Peak are two of the attractive features to visitors at Glenbrook Inn. The trip can be made in a little over two hours, and as on the return it is down hill nearly all the way, the return trip takes a little less.

Leaving Glenbrook on the excellently kept macadamized road over which Hank Monk used to drive stage from Carson City, the eyes of the traveler are constantly observing new and charming features in the mountain landscape. The Lake with its peculiar attractions is left entirely behind, with not another glimpse of it until we stand on the flume at Lake Marlette. Hence it is a complete change of scenery, for now we are looking ahead to tree-clad summits where eagles soar and the sky shines blue.

About two and a half miles out we come to Spooner's, once an active, bustling, roadside hotel, where in the lumbering and mining days teams lined the road four, six and eight deep. Now, nothing but a ramshackle old building remains to tell of its former greatness. Here we made a sharp turn to the left, leaving the main road and taking the special Marlette Lake road. We cross the grade of the abandoned railway - the rails, engines and equipment of which are now operating between Truckee and Tahoe - see in the distance the tunnel through which the trains used to take the lumber, and notice on the hill-sides the lines of the old flumes which used to convey the water to the reservoir on the other side of the tunnel, or bring water and lumber ready to be sent on the further journey down to Carson City.

My driver was in a reflective mood, and as he pointed these things out to me, made some sage and pertinent remarks about the peculiar features of some industries which required large expenditures to operate, all of which were useless in a comparatively short time. Mainly uphill the road continues through groves of cottonwood, by logged-over mountain slopes and sheep-inhabited meadows until the divide is reached. Here a very rapid down hill speedily brings us to the south edge of Marlette Lake. Skirting the southern end we follow the road to the caretaker's house, tie our horses, and walk down to the dam, and then on the flume or by its side to a point overlooking Lake Tahoe, from which a marvelously expansive view is to be obtained. We return now to Marlette and while drinking a cup of coffee prepared for us by the hospitable caretaker, glean the following facts in regard to the history and uses of Marlette Lake.

Marlette is an artificial lake, fifteen hundred feet above the level of Lake Tahoe, and about three miles from its easterly shore. Its waters are conveyed by tunnel, flume, etc., over the mountains, the Washoe Valley and up the mountain again to Virginia City. Originally the only supply of water available for Virginia City was from a few springs and mining tunnels. This supply soon became insufficient and many tunnels were run into hills both north and south from Virginia for the express purpose of tapping water. These soon failed and it became necessary to look for a permanent supply to the main range of the Sierra Nevada twenty-five or more miles away. Accordingly the Virginia and Gold Hill Water Company called upon Mr. Hermann Schussler, the engineer under whose supervision the Spring Valley Water Works of San Francisco were constructed. After a careful survey of the ground he found water at Hobart Creek, in the mountains on the east side of Lake Tahoe, and in the spring of 1872, received orders to go ahead and install a water system. He ordered pipe made to fit every portion of the route. It had to pass across the deep depression of Washoe Valley with water at a perpendicular pressure of 1720 feet, equivalent to 800 pounds to the square inch.

The first operations were so successful that as needs grew the supply flume was extended eight and a half miles to Marlette Lake, thus making the total distance to Virginia City thirty-one and a half miles. This Lake was named after S.H. Marlette, formerly Surveyor General of Nevada, who was associated with W.S. Hobart, of San Francisco, the owner of the land and one of the original projectors of the Water Company. The site was a natural basin, the dam of which had been broken down or eroded centuries ago. A dam was built in 1875, and later raised eleven feet higher so as to afford more storage capacity. The area of the lake is now about 600 acres (before the heightening of the dam it was 300 acres), and its storage capacity is about two billion gallons.

When the supply was enlarged a second pipe was laid alongside the first with an equal capacity, each being able to convey 2,200,000 gallons every twenty-four hours. A third pipe was installed later. The second and third pipes were laid by the late Captain J.B. Overton, who was Superintendent of the Company for over thirty-two years. Captain Overton also extended the flume lines, constructed the tunnel through the mountain ridge, built the Marlette Lake dam and made many other improvements and extensions.

On leaving Marlette Lake through an opening at the lower portion of the dam the water is conducted five miles in a covered flume and thence through a tunnel four thousand feet long through the summit of the dividing ridge or rim of the Tahoe basin to its easterly side. From this point it is again conducted through covered flumes, together with water from Hobart Creek and other streams, to the intake of the pipes across Washoe Valley. These pipes are three in number, two twelve inch and one ten inch. The difference in elevation between the inlet and discharge from No. 1 and No. 2 pipes is 465 feet. The difference in elevation between the inlet and discharge of No. 3 pipe is 565 feet. The pipes are laid across Washoe Valley in the form of inverted syphons. At the lowest point in the valley, the perpendicular pressure is 1720 feet on No. 1 and No. 2 pipes and 1820 feet on No. 3 pipe. The pipe lines go up and down nine canyons in their course across the Valley. Each line is something over seven miles in length. The pressure gauges at Lake View, the point of heaviest pressure, register 820 lbs. on No. 1 and No. 2 pipes when filled, and 910 lbs. on No. 3 pipe when filled.

When this work was first contemplated many hydraulic engineers condemned the project as impossible, as never before had water been carried so far under such pressure. But the fact that the first pipes laid by Engineer Schussler are still in active use demonstrates the scientific and practical knowledge and skill with which he attacked the problem.

It is an interesting fact to note that, prior to the building of the dam, part of the water was used for "fluming" lumber and wood to Lake View, and also for a short period of time after the dam was constructed. But for the past twenty years this practice has been discontinued, the water being solely for the supply of Virginia City. The total cost of the work was about $3,500,000. The Company is now under the immediate and personal supervision of James M. Leonard. The flumes and pipe-lines have recently been rebuilt and repaired where necessary so that the entire system is in excellent condition and a high state of efficiency.


The ride to these three peaks can easily be made in a day, and though they are all in reasonably close proximity, there are differences enough in their respective outlooks to make a visit to each of them enjoyable and profitable. With a good saddle-horse from the Glenbrook stables, a guide, and a lunch tied to the saddle, one may start out confident that a most delightful scenic trip is before him. The first hour's riding is over the rocky and tree-clad slopes, far wilder and more rugged than one would imagine, rudely bordering the Lake southwards. Then turning east, hills and vales, flowery meads and dainty native nurseries of pines, firs and hemlocks enchant the eye. Reaching the summit of any one of the peaks, a wide expanse of Lake is offered, extending to the surrounding mountains north, south and west, but on Genoa Peak an additional charm is found in the close proximity of the Nevada Valley, and mountains to the eastward. The contrast between the richly clad Sierras and the apparently unclothed, volcanic Nevada mountains is remarkable.