I’m BACK! (At least I hope I am!)
I made an unexpected trip to Reno, NV the week of April 15th. After a rough week of dealing with issues, our family congregated at my brother’s stead outside of Reno on the 21st. We decided to spend the day hiking the Hunter Creek Trail as a way to get away from all the stress and chaos!
Hiking distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation gain: 1,000 feet
Summary of hike: Elevation 5,000 feet, highest point 6,000 feet. Very hot hike in summer! You travel up a stark, steep canyon, climbing to a ridge, pass over and down a rocky slope and enter a forest. You will have to do a bit of path finding, ducking under branches and climbing over logs. There are a couple of small creeks, which flow into Hunter Creek from the west. You will finally hear the roar of a waterfall. To get to trail end, stay on the west side of the creek and travel up the very steep, pine needle covered slope.
Information from Visit Reno/Tahoe.
The day was scheduled to be hot (about 83 degrees!), so we brought plenty of water and sunscreen. Our party included 6 adults, 1 baby and 6 children. My brother is a geologist, so a hike with him is always an educational learning experience. We were excited to see the waterfall and head out in jubilant spirits.
The first leg of the hike was not that bad. I was thinking, cool..I can do this! First sticky place was the creek crossing. But with a little bit of coordinated feet work, our party safely made it over the river. On our way to the woods we go!
As we began climbing the terrain I began to worry about just what type of a hike I was getting into. After all, it was hot and I am a complete wimp!
I enjoyed the soft breeze coming from the rambling creek. But when I began to see small waterfalls…I realized that the climbing was going to get a little bit steeper.
This was from our first stop up the hill. You can see the parking lot where we started. In the distance is Reno, NV.
We began to wonder if we were going to make it even half way up the hill. Of course my little nephew was doing great…happy as a clam in his Ergo! This baby was born to hike. His momma spent the majority of her pregnancy hiking!
Don’t you just LOVE that hat!
My brother, the geologist. He is living his dreams. This is where he belongs. Outside among the rocks. I love this picture.
Amazingly the youngest two were keeping up better than the adults! I love my nephew in this picture, he’s such a ham!
Halfway up we lost 2 members of our party. They decided to stay in the shade by the creek until we returned. The guys and the kids took off, leaving me and my sister and the baby trailing behind. By this time, every part of me hurt…and we were getting worried about the continuing lack of shade.
I couldn’t complain about the scenery. It’s mountain desert. You never know what treasures you will find. Of course there was plenty of dead wood for me to shoot!
There were many people we crossed paths who said, “Sorry, we just couldn’t make it.” About 1/4 mile from the waterfall we stopped to decide: Should we go back? I just didn’t think I could do it…I was so hot, low on water, and I hurt all over. Plus I had fallen down a slippery path of rocks and it hurt my pride.
We decided to not quit. SO…low on water (we had to keep what we had for the baby)…we began the last leg of our journey.
Wouldn’t you know it…it was the best part! The hot canyon gave way to a shady path through large pine trees. You could hear the sound of the waterfall as you meandered over tiny creeks. This was our kind of hiking! In Oregon, you hike through the trees…not over rocks & sagebrush.
We came to a split in the road. The moment of truth…We chose the wrong path!!! It took us about another 40 minutes to figure that out. By that time the trail had all but disappeared. I quit taking pictures and started observing my surroundings. Our party was split. The guys made the decision to turn back and return to the split, where we had heard the waterfall.
Of course…that was just a few hundred feet from the waterfall! We spent 40+ minutes getting lost because we turned right instead of left! (Note to hikers, when you get to the meadow, don’t go right, even though the trail seems to disappear…go LEFT!)
THE long journey finally was rewarded. And I was in photograph HEAVEN! Here are some of my favorite pictures:
Hunter Creek Falls
My son couldn’t resist getting in the middle of the falls (despite me telling him NO)
The girls enjoyed playing in the creek.
Monkey Boy dipping his toes into the creek. (YES, he has TONS of sunscreen on!)
I LOVE this picture of my sister!
There was a de-barked tree that was perfect for posed pictures!
Future so bright…I gotta wear shades!
Hanging out with Uncle Rock!
We spent about 45 minutes hanging out near the creek and playing with the baby! The trip back down didn’t take as long as going up.
Overall, it was a great trip because I was with my family. The hike was TOUGH, and it took me 2 days to be able to move all my body parts again…but it was worth it. I can’t wait to start hiking with my sister this summer now!