10 months ago

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Three of us did a multi day loop that included this trail. It was a nice hike with some good views. One thing we hadn't counted on was the scarcity of water. We passed through in the middle of August and found no available water until our second day. Not a problem if you're prepared for it. The summit did offer some great views.

Nice little trail with not a lot of info describing it online. I will try to fill in some of the holes.

I did this hike on Memorial Day weekend. Based on online descriptions of this trail as empty, I didn't expect to see that many people on the trail. However, there were dozen of cars at both Deafy Glade and Summit Spring Trail heads and lots of people on the trail.

The drive in was also not as expected. While the road is pretty good (I saw loaded sedans on it) and fun, there were no river crossings as described. Perhaps they are there earlier in the year. Also, road 17N06 is washed out so you either have to park at the junction or take 17N29 (which gets a little rough) about 1.2 miles east and start from there. Either way, the hike will be longer, with more elevation gain.

I did this hike from the bottom of a the hill on 17N29. The route to the summit and back was 9.6 miles and 2300ft of gain. This route (from 17N29) requires a STEEP off-trail climb directly up the hill. This can be a hard way to start (and end) your hike. Also, at least one rattlesnake inhabits the area. I'd recommend not starting here.

The start of the trail was hot and dry. Soon enough it cools off and the patches of poison oak give way to fragrant wildflowers. The trail then cools off as you enter a forested area near cedar camp. Higher up there were small patches of snow and little streams from the melt. The final approach looks much like higher summits: rocky, treeless and with patchy snow.

All in all, a nice little drive to a nice, well-marked, little trail. There is only moderate steepness along the way and late-season snow make this right all ages and many fitness levels. It's not amazingly scenic, but is very pretty. If I could make a recommendation, I'd say do this in the early spring. The weather would be nicer and I imagine this place would look awe-inspiring with the top half of the trail under a little snow.

You may want a four wheele drive to get to this trail if you are brave enough to cross the river that is . Getting to this trail head is half the adventure . Well worth the trek . Very rewarding views into 4 different county's.