Saturday, October 17, 2009

Hurkey Creek Hike and Bike Trail


The heat was on in the desert again today with the temperature topping 100º so I headed up toward Idyllwild to do my hike today. Our neighbors were up camping at the Hurkey Creek County Park Campground so Nikolas and I went to pay them a visit. Sometimes people knowing that I enjoy hiking ask me if I like to camp. I don't. The only time I enjoy camping is when I've hiked in miles from anyone else and can enjoy the serenity of a pure undeveloped spot. Staying in what is essentially a parking lot next to the Loud Family--like we did at Yosemite this summer--is not my idea of relaxation.

Hurkey Creek is very popular with mountain bikers and the campground was packed with people with bikes. The trail we take is an old road and lot of families use it for riding and hiking.

Nik kicks back on this memorial bench at the start of the trail.

The trail is not really very exciting; it's an old road and fairly flat. We leave the trail and decide to go and hike the creek instead. During most of the year there is water in this creek but it's dry now.

There are a number of downed trees that we have to navigate plus the foliage gets thick upstream so we decide to head back over to the trail.

Those downed trees come in handy as we beat our way back through the brush.

Nikolas doesn't like the trail. It travels through thick chaparral and does not gain much elevation. He tells me, "I was made for climbing and I don't like this". So I let him go back with a group of hikers returning to the campground. I take the left fork here.

There is a stone memorial for a mountain biker who died here in 2006. The memorial bench at the beginning of the trail also commemorates his passing.

The view from here is terrific with Red Tahquitz and Tahquitz Peak filling the horizon. I really want to get further up this canyon but I need to get back to the campground and visit with the people we came up here to see. Next time I come up here I'm going to bring my trail running shorts because while the trail is not great for hiking, it'd be terrific for running.

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