Sweetwater Creek: The Sequel

Today’s target was the yellow trail of Sweetwater Creek, but sadly, the bridge was wiped out in the Sept 09 flood & has not been rebuilt. However, I *did* see someone on the opposite shore of the Yellow trail – I need to figure out how to get to the side of the creek to actually hike the trail… It sounds like it’s a great hike from reviews I’ve read. There’s a “road” where the washed out bridge should be. (Anyone help out with that?)

So after taking the yellow trail to the missing bridge, I u-turned it and took the red trail to the white trail to the “not the white trail” further than last time. I discovered the “Tributary Campsite” and hiked beyond that. Don’t let the first 100 yards of the “Not White Trail” dissuade you, it’s not pretty. It cleans up quite significantly, so don’t be dissuaded.

It was amazing to watch the ferocity of the creek following the recent heavy rains. It felt strong & somewhat angry… I was amazed at areas I had hiked just last week were virtually unrecognizable because they were covered by a significant amount of muddy water. (Compare these pics with my previous visit’s pictures) The creek beds I sat on, watching deer drink from the creek, were now more than a foot underwater.

Here’s some video footage: http://youtu.be/6FX6tobG9xA

I did not see a crane, turtles, or a cottonmouth snake this time…just a lizard in an odd home thanks to the flood on the white trail…

I noticed a lot of details – rocks and fungus, as well as numerous sections of the creek, their motion & energy. . I guess it’s the diver in me, but I found these things interesting:

Tree:Fungus Fans:

Rock Formations:

I saw this tree near the Tributary Campsite and named it Kim Kardashian… It seemed appropriate.

I did not hike inward on white trail to connect with the blue trail. This was more of a “just get out and stretch your legs” hike. I’m recuperating from a concussion (seriously), so I didn’t want to push myself..

The Red trail goes along the creek, has some rocky segments, some ascents or descents (depending on which way you’re going). I saw some folks along the trail with small kids and grandma. Not sure it’s ideal for either, particularly when the water is moving so quickly. These were some spots that required alertness:

Some more pics of the Mill Ruins:

I hiked far south beyond White trail & took Red back to Mill Ruins and back to parking lot. Here’s a pic at the trailhead of the “detour”. This wasn’t up on my first visit.

My phone gps went completely haywire – kinda funny to look at the frantic trail it says I took:http://t.co/HEd1Nwtz I promise I did not have some sort of seizure & cross very fast-moving creek multiple times. 😉

Here’s the official trail map and you can click around for more details: http://goo.gl/S8ykf They have numerous tours during the month on a variety of cool topics including geology and wildlife of the area. Worth checking out.

I still haven’t figured out how to convert/upload the trail data from my Garmin Etrex, I use MyTracks app for backup because it’s easy to just click “upload to Google” but the tracking isn’t exactly accurate. My Etrex said I did 8.2 miles, the tracking is fairly accurate but I went slow – over about 5 1/2 hours (Anyone want to help me with that too?)

Here’s a link about Tributary Trail/campsite:http://goo.gl/KchU

 

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