Willow Creek Trail is a 5.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Gorda, California that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Willow Creek Trail is a hidden gem in the Silver Peak Wilderness. Although the trailhead is only about 2.5 miles from Highway 1, it sees very light use. The trailhead is unsigned and there are currently no signs along the trail, either. Drive about 2.3 miles up the unpaved Los Burros Road near Treebones Resort and park about 50 yards before the start of the trail. The trail starts out as an abandoned road, and it's possible to drive about 1/2 mile down this road for a slightly shorter hike. The road then becomes impassable for vehicles, and eventually transitions to a single-track hiking path at the boundary of the Silver Peak Wilderness. The trail descends through mixed redwood groves on the south side of Willow Creek. A narrow side path just above the creek leads down to the site of an old swinging bridge. The bridge has been removed, and we could find no sign of it on our hike. The main trail continues upstream a short distance to reach two campsites along Willow Creek. The first site is in a small clearing and has a grill and fire pit. The second site, a few minutes' walk farther up the trail, is larger and has a dilapidated picnic table, a grill, and a fire pit. The trail continues beyond the second camp, but soon becomes impassable. This is a very beautiful area, and you'll probably have it all to yourself.