River/Creek · Waterfall
Open year-round for hikers and runners.
This fun hike is a favorite amongst locals for it's easy accessibility, dramatic landscape, and beautiful waterfall destination. At six miles round-trip, it makes for a great afternoon outing.
Need to Know
Much of this hike has little to no shade. Sunscreen recommended.
Start in a parking lot with a water fountain (including a doggy water fountain for fido!) and a bathroom with running water and a sink. There is a well-marked sign for the Hunter Creek Trailhead. Start down the hill to the first creek crossing, with solid rocks to hop across. Shortly after this, you'll see a fork, on the left the trail leads to the creek. This is the last place to access the creek for the next 2 miles. (Important if you have a dog using the creek for water.)
From here, start moving uphill, to a sun-exposed singletrack path with a rare tree for shade. Take this mostly uphill ridge line loosely following Hunter Creek for 2 miles.
There are several areas of talus or fallen rock to navigate, but they are mostly flat and fairly wide. There is one area of larger rocks to scramble for a step or two, but it is short and easy.
Around 2.5 miles, you'll slightly dip into the tree line. This is shady with a nice soft tread to travel over and is still mostly uphill. There are a few false trails, but it is pretty obvious because the main trail is well-trodden.
A second creek crossing (using logs) is located near the waterfall turning point. The creek is very shallow and easy to cross without a lot of skill but if the water is high, you might have to balance on the larger logs.
The end features a waterfall with large fallen trees to sit and rest. It is worth going to this turning point! Now just head back the way you came. The return is mostly downhill and quick.
Note: there are a lot of dogs off leash on this trail, however, the first 3 miles of the trail do require your dog to be on-leash. Please abide by the rules and laws put in place to protect your pup and the wildlife.
Flora & Fauna
This area is a known to have rattlesnakes, mountain lions and black bears, so if you do bring your dog, please keep the pup on-leash (also it is required by the Washoe Country Regional Parks and Open Space as well as the section of the trail owned by the US Forest Service). This is a very well traveled trail so you are not likely to encounter any of the more dangerous animals, but it is still best to plan for the worst and avoid unnecessary risks to you and your pets. Otherwise, there is a large diversity of native wildflowers, shrubs, and trees as well many different species of birds, lizards, and small mammals.
Shared By: ambernikel Mackey