trip reports

January 5, 2019

Herman Creek Trail to Casey Creek

The Herman Creek Trail is one of the areas that was damaged in the September 2017 Eagle Creek Fire. This hike has been a favorite trail of mine for awhile, so I was curious to see how it fared after the fire.

Distance: 7.6 miles 2,000 ft gain

Evidence of the fire is apparent within the first half mile, with fire-scarred boulders in a section of trail that used to be covered with moss. While I was sad to see one of my favorite trees on this trail blackened on the trunk, the tree is still alive and moss is restarting on the boulders, so it’s just a matter of time before the former lushness of this trail returns.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

fire-scarred boulders

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

One of my favorite trees didn’t do so well in the fire.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

still scenic, just in a different way

We took the Herman Creek Bridge Trail to see the bridge over Herman Creek. The bridge survived! And Herman Creek looks as lovely as ever.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

bridge over Herman Creek

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Herman Creek

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Ahh…

After seeing Herman Creek up-close, we backtracked to the trail junction to continue our hike.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

some areas were barely impacted

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

plenty of green in this view from the trail

We started to see more damage from the fire, with blackened tree trunks and eroded areas that used to be filled with ground cover. A lot of plants are starting to make a comeback, so hopefully some of the green lushness will return in time.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Interesting basalt formations are more visible from the trail now.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

I was happy to see that Nick Eaton Falls looks the same as it did before.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

The small oak trees along this section did not fare as well.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Camp Creek is still a highlight of the hike, with plenty of moss-covered rocks lining the creek.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

This section of the trail experienced a LOT of rock fall and there’s virtually no ground cover left.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

I almost didn’t recognize the area around Casey Creek. The former camp area was our turnaround point for the day.

Herman Creek to Casey Creek hike

Trail descriptions:

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