On Sunday the weather forecast was too iffy to do a hike with a views so I opted for a forest hike and headed up to the Trapper Creek Trailhead to do the Dry Creek Trail. It’s almost totally flat the whole way and although there are no sweeping views or wildflower meadows, this is still a very pleasant woodsy ramble along a lovely gurgling creek.
There was this newish-looking sign at the trailhead promoting leave no trace principles and wilderness ethics. I have no idea how many people pay attention to this sign and follow these guidelines, but I applaud the effort. I wish a sign like this could be at every trailhead, regardless of whether the trail heads into designated wilderness:
The forest is incredibly lush and green after the wet winter we had. This forest has plenty of nurse logs/stumps:
The Forest Service website says “5/05/2017: Trail has not been cleared yet of downed trees.” Well at some point since then a crew has come through and cleaned things up. I saw numerous freshly-cut logs. It must have been quite a mess before they cleared the way!
Numerous little side trails led down to the creek:
Looking down on the creek from above:
For awhile the trail is unusually straight. This stretch is along an ancient railroad bed from the old logging railroad days:
There were several stands of bigleaf maple along the way. I also saw plenty of vine maple. I bet this is a nice hike in the fall!
Not too many wildflowers here, but I did see a nice patch of columbine by the creek:
This was cool. The top of this tree broke off and some of the bark peeled away in one big long strip!
Inexplicably there were two sturdy bridges over two unnamed dry creeks:
But at Bourbon Creek there was no bridge at all:
I had read that there was no bridge and had planned to make Bourbon Creek my turnaround point so that’s exactly what I did. 8.5 miles total for the day.
This was a great alternative to the Eagle Creek or Dog Mountain hiker freeways. I saw probably a dozen people all day. There was a trio of adults with two off-leash dogs, one of whom growled and barked at me when we met on the trail. His owners called his name several times before he finally retreated. They apologized to me as they hiked past, but they did not leash either of the dogs.