Forums
Ventana Wilderness Forums • View topic - Marble Peak Trail

Marble Peak Trail

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby Betsy M on Wed Jan 18, 2012 11:19 pm

Date Hiked: January 14, 2012
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Section: From the Trailhead on the Arroyo Seco-Indians Road to Willow Springs Camp

From the Arroyo Seco-Indians Road to Tassajara Creek Camp, this trail is a wilderness freeway. Actually it is an old jeep road, and still as wide as a jeep road for most of the way. At Tassajara Creek Camp the trail begins 14 creek crossings, which can take some time, but all the crossings are now clear of the alder log piles that had been obstructing them since last spring. In early January when we did this hike, the water level in Willow Creek was low enough that all the crossings were possible without removing boots.

Willow Springs Camp did lose a large white oak, but the other trees there are in good shape and this is a large, beautiful camp. There is a toilet located up the hill above the camp. To get to the toilet, hike out of camp as if you were continuing up the Marble Peak Trail. After about 100 yards, turn right at a small stump, and walk uphill about 200 yards.
toilet sized.jpg

Section: Willow Springs Camp to Strawberry Valley

From Willow Springs to the saddle the trail is in good shape, but brushy near the top. For about a mile past the saddle, to where the trail heads in towards Camp Creek, there is lots of encroaching brush, primarily warty-leaf ceanothus. The rest of the way to Strawberry Valley is clear, although brush is starting to push hikers off of the tread, and dry ravel has piled up on the tread, making it outsloped and difficult to walk on in many places.

We met two hikers who planned to hike to Marble Peak. They reported the trail is impassable from Strawberry Valley heading towards Tan Oak Camp.
User avatar
Betsy M
 
Posts: 397
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby jack_glendening on Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:05 am

Date Hiked: November 14, 2011
General Condition: Impassable (completely overgrown or tread obliterated)

This report is for the section east of the trail's intersection with the Lost Valley Trail.

The tread is followable, although encroaching brush and downfall requires one to occasionally hunt for the path, making the trail "passable", until 0.4 miles west of Tan Oak Camp. There the trail descends to the creek and became "impassable" - a sea of ceanothus, vines up to one's hips, and some narrow deep gulleys make it the worst bushwhacking experience I've ever had. I spent 1.4 hours trying to find tread, making only 0.2 miles of headway in that time, and never reached Tan Oak Camp. For anyone trying to go along this section, I'd recommend trying to stay higher if possible, away from the creek and its vines - the vines are like Lilliputian ropes, tying one down, making even lifting a foot difficult, and sapping one's energy. And there are some very narrow but deep gulleys hidden by the vines - I once stepped on what I thought was solid ground but found myself falling down 4 feet into the gulley they hid. (After the hike I was told about someone taking horses along this stretch many years ago, their pack horse falling into a gulley and being hurt so badly that it needed to be put down!) Or else creek walk (although that is made difficult by the narrow gully it is in).
Big Sur Trailmap: https://bigsurtrailmap.net
User avatar
jack_glendening
 
Posts: 685
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:03 am

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby jack_glendening on Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:02 am

Date Hiked: November 14, 2011
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

This report is for the westernmost section, from the intersection with Lost Valley Trail west to North Coast RIdge Road.

Someone has been working on this section and the tread is in good shape, but some downed trees hinder travel with a backpack. There is now a new sign marking the intersection of the MP Trail with the Lost Valley Trail. Going westward from that sign, there can be some difficulty determining the correct route since pig tracks lead in many directions from the intersection sign and the path across the creek is rather thin - specifically, if one takes the path that aligns with the sign one end ends crossing the creek south of the actual trail crossing and separated from the trail by a wall of brush. It took me three tries before I found the correct path, so I placed a few flags there to help.
Big Sur Trailmap: https://bigsurtrailmap.net
User avatar
jack_glendening
 
Posts: 685
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:03 am

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby rt1 on Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:39 am

The trail to ZigZag has been lost for decades
rt1
 
Posts: 127
Joined: Fri Jun 05, 2009 7:50 pm

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby iivvgg on Mon Sep 05, 2011 5:26 pm

Date Hiked: September 5, 2011
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Trail is clear from Indians Road to Tassajara Creek. From Tassajara Creek to Willow Springs, we found some encroaching brush and forking use trails, plus swarms of gnats with admixtures of mosquitoes and biting flies. Poison oak was pretty bad around the shins; I unzipped my pantlegs and washed them with soap when we got to camp. Stock parties will find some nigh (neigh?) impassable deadfalls. Both the poison oak and gnats mostly disappeared once the trail pulled away from the creek. (Just below this point there is a nice campsite, not marked on the map, in a cathedral grove of oaks). We counted 18 crossings of Willow Creek. None were particularly difficult, thanks to our helpful trail crews.

Our destination had been Zigzag Camp, but we went all the way into the canyon of Camp Creek and never found the spur trail down the hill. At one point, we found some orange ribbons tied to the burned remains of manzanitas, appearing to be trail markers, but they led us to what was clearly just more brush and not a trail.
iivvgg
 

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby js_radford on Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:53 am

Date Hiked: July 10, 2011
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Beyond the South Fork Trail Jct. in Strawberry Valley, Marble Peak Trail tread is traceable once one is across the seasonal stream near there, to Tan Oak Camp and a few hundred yards beyond, which is as far as I went.

Between Strawberry Valley and the Tony Trail, tread is good to excellent with some slip-outs. I removed some brush and obstacles causing off-tread walking, which is extremely destructive of tread, which I repaired in critical sections. But there remain other problems needing repair soon. I also cut all the deadfalls between Willow Springs and the Tony Trail junction, except one small one 4" log (any backpacking saw can handle that last one).

There is some serious brush in the cove just before one rounds the corner going uphill to Camp Creek cove. That lasts a very short time and is but a very tiny hint at extensive problems to come on the South Fork Trail past the Black Cone Trail junction and on the BCT about .6 miles beyond Strawberry.

Otherwise, there is very little tall brush but a substantial amount of shin-brushing vegetation such as the gloriously blooming (now faded) Deer Weed.

Water this year (into mid-July!) between Willow Springs and Strawberry has been delightfully abundant, with fill-up sources every hour at most.
js_radford
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:19 am

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby Betsy M on Sat Jun 11, 2011 9:10 pm

Date Hiked: May 31, 2011
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Thank you to the previous poster, for working on the poison oak! We hiked from Strawberry to the Tony Trail, before you were through here, and it was starting to get bad. Loppers do a good job in the short term, although grubbing PO out by the roots is the best long term solution.

There are tons of flowers on the contour sections of the Marble Peak Trail: creeping sage, penstemon, yerba santa, poppies, even a few wooly blue curls.
IMG_1177.JPG
IMG_1178.JPG
IMG_1181.JPG
Plus there is lots of encroaching brush, starting to push hikers off of the tread.
IMG_1182.JPG
Mostly this is a problem between Camp Creek and Willow Springs Camp. Camp Creek itself is pretty much ruined for camping. The trees which shaded the camp burned, and have fallen down. The creek crossing is tricky because the trail has collapsed where it crosses the creek.
User avatar
Betsy M
 
Posts: 397
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby fulmar2 on Tue May 31, 2011 9:06 am

Date Hiked: May 28, 2011
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

A friend and I hiked from the Arroyo Seco end out to Rainbow camp on this trail. The section from Arroyo Seco out to Strawberry is fine; Some slightly challenging stream crossings, and a few fallen trees to climb over. Tread is decent, sometimes sloping. Pretty easy to find in almost all places. My friend spent significant energy brushing this trail with some loppers - removing almost all of the poison oak extending into the trail between Arroyo Seco and Strawberry.

fulmar2
fulmar2
 

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby Rob on Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:01 pm

Date Hiked: February 12, 2011
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Hiked from the junction with the South Fork trail (Strawberry Camp) to Willow Springs Camp and then on to the Tony trail the next morning. Pretty smooth sailing in most places. Tread was sloping in some areas. There was a washout at the last big creek crossing before Willow Springs and some large blowdown, necessitating a short detour. Brush encroaches for short stretches and there was some of the usual winter blowdown before and after Willow Springs. Spent a chilly night in the canyon.
Rob
 
Posts: 98
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 3:21 pm
Location: SJC

Re: Marble Peak Trail

Postby Farley on Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:34 pm

Date Hiked: October 28, 2010
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

The trail was clear from Horsebridge to the Zig Zag saddle as of 28 October 2010.
All of the trees pictured below in Betsy's last report were removed 28 October 2010 by members of the Rancho Cielo fire crew working with VWA trail crew leader Steve Benoit, his handy under-bucker and trusty crosscut saw. Earlier, this crew removed 12 tree/shrub jumbles, overhanging dead limbs and hung up trees, as well as encroaching brush between Willow Springs Camp and Zig Zag saddle (the watershed divide between Willow Cr and Zog Zag Cr).
As we walked out at least four trees toppled in the wind between Willow Springs Camp and Tassajara Camp. One or two of these may have crossed the trail, but they fell behind us, and we didn't turn around to check. Care should be taken in canyon bottoms burned by the Basin fire - seems the weaker hardwoods - especially riparian trees such as sycamore and alder - are coming down really fast this season. Ladybugs were massing on blackberry and dead sycamores between Tony Trail junction (clearly marked with signs and flagging) and Willow Springs Camp.
Huge thanks and respect to the fire crew from Rancho Cielo and to all who work to keep these ways into Wilderness open for all to enjoy.
User avatar
Farley
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2010 12:54 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Ventana Wilderness Trails

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron