Lakes and Creeks

Lakes, creeks, rivers, ponds, streams. Just about anything wet that isn’t the sea.

Lunch break by Long Creek – The Falls on Long Creek are a popular destination, so I normally stop a couple of hundred yards or so further downstream to keep away from people. Today was no different. Although it was deserted when I arrived, at least half a dozen people turned up while I was taking a break. Two-minute read, +2

Long Creek, Hercules Glades Wilderness, Fall 2021 #1 – I set myself a deadline of 2 p.m. to arrive at Long Creek. If I made it by then, I’d stop for lunch at The Falls. Otherwise, I’d carry straight on and head up the creek and the Pole Hollow Trail, to head for my campsite for the night.

Mores Branch, looking upstream – After lunch, which I heated up on my new titanium wood stove, I lazed around enjoying the sunshine, peace, and quiet.

Deep Pool on Mores Branch – And deep it was. I had to leave my camera, clothes, and other gear behind because I was up to my waist within a couple of steps. I wanted to get to the end of the pool to see how easy the next section of the creek would be to hike. One-minute read

Mores Branch – Hercules Glades Wilderness – From the map, I could see it was under a mile of bushwhacking to get to Mores Branch. The hollow is steep but there was a point where a ravine ran into the hollow that looked like it would offer a good way down. +2

Bath time – After crossing ‘Cat Briar Meadows,’ I was hot, sweaty, and dirty. I stopped here for half an hour, filled up with water, and then had a quick bath in this pool. Let’s just say it was invigorating (flipping chilly).

This is going to get messy. The lake has dropped six to eight inches, but it’s still covering the trail. +1

Lifting mist at Piney Creek – Complete with a heron.

Misty Morning at Piney Creek. It was worth all the heat and bug bites just for the magical few minutes watching the mist evaporate. +2

Through the veil – looking across the lake, the mist was lifting.

View from the lake.

Fun and frolics at the lake – The lake was warm, almost bath temperature. I didn’t bother to count how many times I took a dip. It was a lot. Slideshow: +5

First glimpse of the lake – but not my first encounter. I checked the lake level before I left, and it was five feet above standard pool. When I was here this time last year, I think it was eleven feet above pool. Anyway, the lake was high enough to have covered the trail in places on the way in. One-minute read

‘Top-up Creek’ – On my trips to the lake at Piney Creek I almost always stop here to get water. So I’ve decided to name this feeder-creek ‘Top-up Creek.’

Small spring and creek near ‘Ant Hill’ – The spring we found can be seen right at the bottom of the frame. The water was pouring out of a small one to one-and-a-half-inch hole in the bank. +3

Glimpse – A glimpse of the sky, and the river can just be seen through the leaves. +2

Steam Mill Creek Crossing – This is where the main North Fork Loop Trail crosses the creek in Steam Mill Hollow. One-minute read

Lunch break by the creek in Steam Mill Hollow. Not that I knew it was the creek in Steam Mill Hollow at the time. It seems I need to learn several more lessons in checking my compass and map before I assume I know where I am. Two-minute read, +1

The final crossing of Whites Creek.

Crossing Whites Creek – You have to cross Whites Creek to get back to the main Whites Creek Trail. It’s not very obvious in this picture (or in reality), but the trail climbs up the bank just to the right of the tree on the left side of the frame.

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