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Cruikshank Trail

Re: Cruikshank Trail to Upper Cruikshank Camp

Postby gfelsman on Sat Sep 09, 2017 6:31 pm

Date Hiked: September 8, 2017
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Darlene and I had a chance to explore the lower Cruikshank Trail from Hwy 1 to Villa Creek Camp and back. Luckily it was a cool and foggy day for this journey making for a pleasant hike. We encountered two backpackers on our trip who hiked in from Salman Creek Ranger Station.

I am happy to report the trail is basically clear all the way to Villa Creek Camp with many leaves across the trail for lack of use because Hwy 1 is closed at the Salmon Creek Ranger Station.

Below are the basic trail conditions.

1. From Hwy 1, brush encroaching to the start of the switchbacks.
2. Switchback to Wilderness Sign, Clear
3. Next half mile to the second redwood trees, clear with encroaching brush.
4. Remainder of trail is clear all the way to Upper Cruikshank Camp.

Both Upper and Lower Cruikshank Camps are clean and clear. Remember there are no campfires allowed anywhere in the backcountry. You may use a portable propane stove with a valid fire permit.
Attachments
IMG_2421.JPG
Upper Cruikshank Camlp
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby mmellea on Sun Aug 06, 2017 9:54 pm

Date Hiked: August 5, 2017
General Condition: Difficult (brushy and/or many deadfalls, faint tread)

Hiked from South Coast Ridge Road to turnoff for Buckeye Trail.

Trail to Lion Den camp is clear, with a little water at Lion Den camp. From there, it gets more overgrown as previous posters have mentioned, with brush tunnels becoming fairly common.

The trail is thick with poison oak, including some areas where it overgrows on both sides and above the trail -- it just seemed to keep coming. About a mile or so upstream of Silver Camp the train seemed to open up and get less poison-oaky. Lots of bugs, especially near the streams/trickles of water (which there are a handful of along the trail).

Information about washed out areas upstream of Silver Camp is still accurate:
at_scott wrote:Two of these sections were sketchy while the third seemed downright dangerous to me. One of these sections seems to be a recent slide of pretty loose sandy material and was pretty difficult to get across. Another section has a very narrow, loose, bench cut over a rocky cliff. A fall here would be serious.


We lost the trail at what I think is the third slide (trail ends, steep gravel slope and then creek with water) and spent about 20 min looking for it, getting scraped up descending a super-steep face as a result. Of course, it was more obvious than we realized--but if others have trouble, the trail continues on the other side of the creek downhill of where it ends.
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby at_scott on Mon Jun 05, 2017 8:41 am

Date Hiked: June 3, 2017
General Condition: Difficult (brushy and/or many deadfalls, faint tread)

I hiked with my dog from South Coast Ridge Road to Upper Cruikshank Camp. The trail was mostly clear with the exception of a couple of brush tunnels that were difficult to get low enough to get through with a pack. I would have rated the trail passable if it were not for three pretty sketchy sections about a 1/4 mile east (up hill) of Silver Camp. Two of these sections were sketchy while the third seemed downright dangerous to me. One of these sections seems to be a recent slide of pretty loose sandy material and was pretty difficult to get across. Another section has a very narrow, loose, bench cut over a rocky cliff. A fall here would be serious.

There was good water flowing at Lion Den Camp and Silver Camp.

We didn't see another person all weekend.
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby Jeff Cannon on Sat May 06, 2017 6:43 pm

Date Hiked: May 6, 2017
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Hiked from the Coast Ridge Road to the divide past Lions Den Camp. The camp is in perfect condition and there is more water in the stream than I have ever seen. The sign at the road has delaminated from its backing and is lying neatly on the ground so it is readable. It would be a great project to redo this sign as well as the one at the top of the Dutra Trail. Conditions from the road to the Villa Creek drainage divide is mostly clear. The use trail to Silver Peak needs real help. I didn't have to crawl as I have done in the past, but it is getting close to this in spots again.
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby Al Normandin on Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:03 pm

Date Hiked: December 18, 2016
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Hiked Cruikshank from Highway 1 to Coast Ridge Road. The trail is excellent from Hwy 1 to Silver Public Camp. Shortly after Silver Camp the trail is very dangerous as the trail cut is heavily eroded in many very steep hillsides. Once you hit the Silver Peak turnoff, the trail is excellent from there to Coast Ridge Road. There was water at all campsites. The good news is that the trail is not grown in so that people wearing shorts will not get their legs scratched up. It is noted that the trail sign at Coast Ridge Road is falling apart as the laminated wood has literally become unglued and soon maybe in a state where it is no long readable.
Al Normandin
 

Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby gfelsman on Mon Dec 12, 2016 6:53 pm

Date Hiked: December 12, 2016
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

We had the chance to take our first excursion in the Silver Peak Wilderness today. The weather was perfect and we had the trail to ourselves. We hiked from the Trailhead to Upper Cruikshank Camp, then down to Villa Creek. The trail is clear in many sections and a Wilderness Freeway in others.

The Trail Conditions are as follows.

Trailhead to Top of Switchback, Wilderness Freeway.
Northern facing slope to start of redwood trees clear with some encroaching brush.
From the redwoods to Upper Cruikshank Camp, clear.

Lower and Upper Cruikshank Camps are in good condition and no recent evidence of an camp fires. (Campfires are not permitted at this time.)

Villa Creek is crossable at this time.

We removed most of the storm debris along the trail along with three snags that had fallen onto the trail.

We had a nice snack lunch in the open meadow just past Upper Cruikshank Camp.
Attachments
Top of Switchbacks.jpg
Top of the switchback entering the Silver Peak Wilderness
Fungi.jpg
Fungi along the trail
Upper Cruikshank Camp.jpg
Upper Cruikshank Camp
Villa Creek.jpg
View of Villa Creek
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby Guest on Thu Jun 09, 2016 11:55 am

Date Hiked: June 4, 2016
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Went up to Lions Den with my brother Saturday morning and hiked out Sunday. Trail was in good condition and the weather was nice. Saw quail, a Gardner snake, and lots of lizards. Once we cleared the first set of switchbacks we began to noticed a lot of ticks from that point in. It was pretty warm too so it was a good thing the water was following both at Upper Cruickshank and Lions Den. The flies were a nuisance (are they seasonal?) and stayed out from sunrise to sunset. Also, lots of little spiders hanging across the manzanita tunnels. Only saw 3 groups the whole hike and had a great time. Probably try to again when its cooler in the fall or winter.
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby billomansiek on Sun May 22, 2016 4:59 pm

Date Hiked: May 16, 2016
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

The Cruikshank trail heading uphill from the Buckeye Trail is in good condition. No problems getting to Silver Camp, where there is plenty of water flowing. Beyond Silver Camp, the trail is still in good shape, but there are some stretches that are a little more challenging. Pretty good shade while hiking much of this trail up. Once near the top the shade diminishes for the last 20 minutes or so before Lion Den Camp. When you reach the top there appear to be two directions one can take following the trail. Take the one straight ahead rather than the one to the right to get to Lion Den Camp.

Lion Den Camp is really wonderful. There is water flowing enough to sustain any size group right now. It takes a bit of time to fill a bucket of water that has no sediment, but I was just happy that there was water. The view from Lion Den camp is truly wonderful. Over the V shaped valley to the ocean. Highly recommended - it is worth the hike up.
billomansiek
 

Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby Guest on Tue May 03, 2016 5:14 pm

Date Hiked: April 29, 2016
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and well maintained)

What a fantastic trip! Hiked from the Cruikshank trailhead to Villa Creek Camp. Cruikshank is in great condition, tread was extremely well defined, there was a tiny bit of encroaching brush here and there, but really nothing to complain about and easily avoidable. PO was not really an issue and the spots where there was some were easily avoidable. Villa Creek Camp is looking gorgeous as ever with the creek gushing alongside and full, clear, cold pools to soak the feet in! Thanks to all who have worked hard to make this such an enjoyable hike - the diversity of amazing scenery definitely has me planning my next trip down!
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Re: Cruikshank Trail

Postby gfelsman on Wed Apr 27, 2016 7:00 pm

Date Hiked: April 25, 2016
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and well maintained)

Darlene and I hiked the trail to Upper Cruikshank Camp, the trail was in good shape all the way to the camp.

There is some encroaching brush in a few places with all the spring growth. Tread was easy to follow

Lower Cruikshank Camp was clean, clear and had water flowing nearby.
Upper Cruikshank Camp was clean, clear and had water flowing nearby.

We ran into two set of backpackers on this trip. One heading out and the other heading to Buckeye Camp for the weekend. It was a beautiful day with great views.
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