I have a sedentary job and I’ve been disgustingly sedentary on my free time this winter. So today I was looking for a whip-my-ass-into-shape hike where I wouldn’t encounter mobs of people. So I settled on Indian Point.
The gate is open at the Herman Creek Campground so you can drive all way the trailhead. The lot there had more than 30 cars when I pulled in right after 10:00. Yikes!
Within the first quarter mile I saw several trillium blooming alongside the trail. The forest is very much cloaked in winter right now, though, with no vegetation leafing out yet.
Cool tree leaning over the trail:
So much moss!
I decided to take the Gorton Creek Trail up and the Nick Eaton Ridge Trail down. There’s no scenery along the GCT so I just powered up the trail one step at a time, wondering how I could let myself get so out of shape over the winter.
I finally made it to the steep booth path that goes down to the point and made my way down. When I got to Indian Point I was surprised to see that the place was deserted. I headed out on the rocks a short ways, took a few quick pics, and then beat a hasty retreat. A fierce icy cold wind was blowing and it instantly numbed my bare fingers.
I ate a quick snack in the trees where it was slightly less windy before heading back up to the main trail. I picked up the cutoff trail and headed over to Nick Eaton Ridge, then headed downhill. I was pleasantly surprised to find a series of small meadows, and then a huge meadow, along the upper stretches of this trail. I could see Bonneville Dam and I even got a peekaboo view of Mt. Hood!
Except for the trillium near the trailhead these grass widows and goldstars were the only signs of spring on the whole hike.
After a long grueling descent down all those switchbacks (oh my poor knees!) I finally reached the Herman Creek Trail. There’s an old mossy trail sign near the junction, although not as near as you would think.
Back at the trailhead I saw that parking had overflowed and cars were parked in the campground, and I saw some parked down on the road as well. Sheesh! I feel lucky that I only saw 20 people on my hike!