July 18, 2017
Distance: 0.85 mi (1.4 km)
In an attempt to fill the evening with something more fun than sitting at the research station, Madelyn and I took a quick glance at our map and headed off to a lesser known trail called Alaska Creek.
Come to find out, it’s lesser known – and wholly undocumented – because it isn’t a strictly maintained trail. In fact, there isn’t even a road sign showing where the turn is for the trailhead. (We did a couple of u-turns before we figured it was down an unmarked dirt path.)
When we parked, we were greeted by a swarm of mosquitos, which have been really, really, I mean really bad here this trip. We suited up in long pants and jackets in 75° weather and found a quaint sign suggesting a trailhead existed at the exact point where every dead tree decided to fall. Honestly, looking at it, it looked more like a deliberate debris pile than a trail, so we walked down the road to what looked more like a trail, but still didn’t look…legit.
Anyway, we headed off with our mosquito entourage and trekked through the woods a bit and found Alaska Creek about a quarter of a mile in.
We saw a controlled burn pile, which took me by surprise given that we were on a trail directly off the road. But I suppose there are some burn piles in other populated areas – Signal Mountain comes to mind. Madelyn took a quick minute to give a Dave-wave before moving on.
We followed the creek around a bend, saw some pretty distinct moose and bear tracks, and then headed out toward a meadow.
When we finally broke through the trees, the temperature rose just enough thanks to the evening sun that our entourage seemed to double in both size and ferocity. I had to throw on a mosquito net just to stay sane – there’s a certain madness that sets in when you’re being attacked by needles from all directions. And might I say I think it’s pretty fly…haha.
Anyway we did get a gorgeous meadow view, which was worth the struggle. The trees, the mountains, the setting sun lighting up the grass…the whole bit.
After that, we pretty much ran back to the car. It was less than a mile of a walk in the woods, but we fought hard against nature the whole time, so I say we get a few bonus points just because.