Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

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ebishop
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Joined: November 16th, 2011, 12:52 pm

Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

Post by ebishop » August 29th, 2019, 11:39 am

On Thursday August 22, a friend and I hiked part of the upper Gorton Creek trail, up to point 2936, about half a mile past Deadwood Camp. Gorton is reasonably clear up until it gains the ridge about 0.5 miles past Deadwood Camp, at roughly 2930'. Beyond that point, the trail goes from faint to nothing.

We didn't have time to explore through the disappeared section that day, so I can't report yet on where the trail picks back up.

We had intended to hike up to where Gorton joins Nick Eaton Ridge at about 3900', roughly 7.4 miles in. Neither of us had been through upper Gorton since the fire, and we weren't sure what to expect for damage. When the trails opened last year, I hiked Nick Eaton all the way to Green Point, and although Nick Eaton disappears for a while on the ridge, I remember the burn letting up somewhere near the upper Gorton junction, which I think was still in tact. So, apparently at least a little bit of the upper Gorton trail still exists, coming down from Ridge Camp at 3900'.

Has anyone else hiked through the section of Gorton between Deadwood Camp and where it meets Nick Eaton at 3900'? I'm curious to know how far the damage extends.

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mountainkat
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Re: Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

Post by mountainkat » August 29th, 2019, 4:59 pm

Yes, we hiked it in the spring sometime. We took Gorton up to Greenpoint, then back to where it connects to Nick Eaton and then Nick Eaton back down.

The burn is bad there on that ridge beyond Deadwood and after for a little bit. The trail has disappeared to some degree. We did find it on the ridge and followed it mostly through the burn. I feel like there were only a few intensely burned sections before going into unburnt forest again.

ebishop
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Re: Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

Post by ebishop » August 29th, 2019, 5:13 pm

Mountainkat-

Thanks for your reply. That is good news and excellent information.

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Chip Down
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Re: Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

Post by Chip Down » August 29th, 2019, 6:32 pm

ebishop wrote:
August 29th, 2019, 11:39 am
Has anyone else hiked through the section of Gorton between Deadwood Camp and where it meets Nick Eaton at 3900'? I'm curious to know how far the damage extends.
A few months ago. It was snowy though, so I didn't know how much to blame the fire vs snow coverage. Like you, I struggled up the ridge. I seem to remember it did get better intermittently. Eventually I gave up and cut over to Eaton offtrail. Then at the Eaton/Gorton junction, I tried to follow Gorton down. Of course, there was even more snow up there, and I gave up. I've been wanting to get back, but based on the posts above, I suspect there's no point, unless I'm in the mood for a bushwhack.

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Don Nelsen
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Re: Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

Post by Don Nelsen » August 29th, 2019, 7:23 pm

I did this route twice post fire and there is only about a half mile or less of completely obliterated trail. The switchbacks off the ridge are the worse due to small trees down over the trail and some brush. Here is a track from a June '18 trip:

Image

This map shows my original track from my June 27th, 2018 hike. The ridgeline switchbacks are the problem but with very careful navigating you can find the route. the worst of it is at about 3200 feet.

Have fun!

dn
"Everything works in the planning stage".

ebishop
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Re: Gorton Creek 08/22/2019

Post by ebishop » August 30th, 2019, 7:57 am

Don-
That's really good to hear. I suspected the damage might be short but feared that it was closer to 2 miles than half a mile. I will have to get back in there with more daylight and a GPS. I'm hoping to get some of the smaller brush up there cleared before the weather totally turns this year.

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