2019 Rambler Hikes Page 2

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Rambler Hikes 2017          Rambler Hikes 2018         2019 Part 1

      

Oakhurst River Parkway & Corlieu Falls          Rancheria Falls & Big Creek

     

Oakhurst River Parkway
by Dick and Wes

Dick: Our May hike brought us to a trail that none of us had hiked before, although I had been on part of it with daughter Jennifer in the early 2000's. We also did a second hike that was new to half our group. However, I'm getting ahead of things here. On May 30 Ardyss, Allen and I left my place in Clovis at 7:30 a.m., and met Wes at the Park & Ride at Highways 41 and 145. We expected to have Don join us there but he had to cancel at the last minute, so we all got in Wes's Highlander for the 40-mile drive to Oakhurst. Here we met with Bev from nearby Ahwahnee, and hiked on the Oakhurst River Parkway. I didn't really remember what the trail was like or even where it started, but an internet search turned up the needed information, and we found it with no trouble.

Wes:  The Ramblers' hike today was a "two for." That is to say, we got two hikes for the price of one. We started the morning at the Oakhurst River Parkway which offers trails along China Creek and the Fresno River. Although we were in the midst Oakhurst, the trails gave the illusion of being in the wilderness. We crossed several foot bridges and enjoyed the lush green plants and valley oak forest on the river banks.

      
Ardyss, Bev, Dick and Allen ready to hike The Fresno River
      
We didn't see them, but there are beaver in the river A rustic bridge
    

Dick: Along the trail and in the town park we saw a beautiful flower, which Allen identified as rock rose - not wildflowers, but still providing an added scenic bonus as we walked. From the park, the trail led us down into the channel of China Creek for about a quarter mile. We came to a short uphill section and found ourselves in town again, on Road 425. We walked west a short distance to a traffic signal where we could cross safely, then on a sidewalk in front of a small office building. Soon we were back in nature, this time walking along the bank of the Fresno River. We found a place where a senior citizen who's almost 70 could pose safely for a "Wes on the rock" picture.

    
Rock roses were planted in a number of places by the trail and road Wes on the rock in the river

     

Wes: We saw a field of poppies which may have been planted years ago but appeared to be growing at random. They offered an interesting foreground to one of the town murals. Retracing our steps, we finished the river walk well before noon. Bev left for home to prepare for company while the rest of us drove up Highway 41 about five miles for our second hike of the day along the Lewis Creek Trail.

We wanted to see Corlieu Falls at its peak flow, and we were not disappointed. The water roared as it raced through large boulders and down a 150 foot drop, offering lots of interesting sights and sounds.

Dick: Although Wes and I have hiked this trail a number of times, it was the first visit for Ardyss and Allen, who were delighted with this little-known dramatic waterfall. Although it's only a bit more than a half mile from the trailhead to a viewing platform, it's fairly steep, and rocky in places.

The trail descends into the Lewis Creek canyon through a forest of canyon live oaks, ponderosa pine and cedar, plus the usual bushes and plants. Flowers we saw included Indian pinks, elderberry, miner's lettuce, bear clover and wild iris.

    
Corlieu Falls A rush of water at the base of the falls
     

After enjoying the cool surroundings at the falls, we hiked back to the car, and drove to Oakhurst for a delicious lunch at Pete's Place, where we discussed our next hike. Options include Nelder Grove and Rancheria Falls. Stay tuned!

More Photos

      
Rancheria Falls and Big Creek
    

This is a hike the Ramblers have made several times, the first one in 2016. It's fairly short and easy, but the reward is one of the more spectacular waterfalls outside of our national parks.

We left my house at 7:30 on June 19 and drove the 60 miles to Huntington Lake. At the east end of the lake a dirt road goes in about a mile to the trailhead for the Rancheria Falls Trail. Our group this time included Sue, Wes, Allen and Dick. It was cool and comfortable when we got on the trail, although we did encounter some obstacles - at least five logs that had fallen across the trail. The route had just opened, so we understood why there had not been time for the logs to be cleared.

   
The Ramblers: Dick Estel, Sue Wirt, Allen Ward, Wes Thiessen Getting around the first fallen tree
   

We managed to climb over or go around all the logs, and reached our goal, where we saw that the falls was running as full as we had ever seen it. It was the first visit for Sue and Allen, but Wes and I have been there with or without other members of the Ramblers a number of times.

Following his usual habit, Wes went down a steep, narrow unofficial trail to a good vista point. Although there is a clear view of the 150 foot drop of the falls from top to bottom at the end of the trail, the spot Wes chose gives a better view of the cascades below the main drop.

   
Wes finds the perfect viewing spot Rancheria Falls and the cascades below
   

We enjoyed the view and the dramatic sound of rushing water, getting well dampened with mist in the process. As we took a final look at Rancheria Falls, I could not help thinking how much my great grandson Colton would like it, having become a big fan of waterfalls after his first visit to Yosemite at age three.

    
Rancheria Falls The big cascade below the main falls
  

It was not even noon when we got back to the car. Since our hike had been fairly short and easy, we decided to go to the Big Creek Trail, which starts behind the China Peak Ski Lodge, about a mile from the Rancheria road. We have made this hike before, although we never go very far - less than half a mile round trip in this case. This creek is even bigger than Rancheria, and at this season is mostly white water crashing and cascading over rocks and boulders.

    
Wes gets too close to Big Creek Lots of white water
   

After we finished our second hike, we made a lunch stop at Shaver Lake, where we ate at the Pub and Grub, an excellent restaurant we had discovered by accident on a previous Ramblers hike. We missed those members of our group who were not able to join us on this special hike, but hopefully they will be back on the trial in July.

--Dick Estel, July 2019

More Rancheria & Big Creek Photos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    
Photos (Click to enlarge; pictures open in a new window)

Photos by Wes and Dick

Oakhurst River Parkway & Corlieu Falls         Rancheria & Big Creek
     
Oakhurst River Parkway & Corlieu Falls
      
China Creek Nearby Yosemite and Sierra wildlife are featured on this mural at the Boys & Girls Club Another mural with a stand of poppies

The Ramblers at Corlieu Falls: Dick, Allen, Ardyss and Wes

Making our way up the trail Wild iris provided a bright spot along the trail
  
Rancheria Falls and Big Creek
      
Allen at the the end of the trial near the falls Big Creek Clouds above the ridge
 
Related Links
Oakhurst River Parkway Pete's Place Oakhurst CA
Lewis Creek Trail Corlieu Falls  Rancheria Video
Rancheria Falls Trail Huntington Lake Other Rancheria Hikes
Rancheria Falls 2019
    
 
Travel Reports
   
Before 2002     2002     2003     2004     2005     2006     2007     2008         2009

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Before 2002
Early Trips Later Trips
Camping Trips Backpacking Trips
1961 Monterey Jazz Festival Bluegrass Odyssey
   
Multi-Year Compilations
Fresno Area Canal Walks Clovis Trail Walks
   
2002
Journey of 2002 (Ohio & Back) Logandale & Utah Parks 2002
   
2003
Arizona & Bluegrass on the River 2003 Grand Canyon & Logandale Bluegrass 2003
Parkfield & Huck Finn 2003 Early Frog Camps (2003-2005)
   
2004
Paso Robles & Parkfield 2004 Road Trip 2004 (Ohio & Back)
Bullhead City Bluegrass, Mesa, Superstition Bluegrass 2004 Bluegrass in the Foothills 2004
   
2005
Arizona-Southern California 2005 Huck Finn Bluegrass 2005
Morro Bay 2005 Stargazer Rock Camp 2005
Parkfield Bluegrass 2005    
   
2006
Huck Finn Bluegrass 2006 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2006
Rock Creek Non-Camp Stargazer Rock Camp 2006
Parkfield Bluegrass 2006 Oregon 2006
Bluegrass in the Foothills 2006    
   
2007
Bullhead City, Bakersfield, Joshua Tree 2007 Frog Camp 2007
Eastern Sierra Journey 2007 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2007
Stargazer Rock Camp 2007 Roundup #1
(Mother Lode; Kings Canyon, Yosemite)
Bluegrass in the Foothills 2007    
   
2008
Nevada-Arizona Hockey & Bluegrass 2008 Parkfield Bluegrass 2008
Frog Camp 2008 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2008
Stargazer Rock Camp 2008 Bluegrass in the Foothills 2008
Hobbs Grove Festival 2008     
   
2009
Roundup 2009
Las Vegas, Mariposa, Table Mountain, Orange County
Frog Camp 2009 Southern Journey 2009
Parkfield Bluegrass 2009 Stargazer Rock Camp 2009
Bluegrass Tour 2009
Brown Barn, Plymouth, Hobbs Grove   
Hensley Lake Camp
   
2010
Mojave National Preserve & Havasu Bluegrass Roundup 2010
Hensley Reservoir, Mojave Preserve 2 & 3
Parkfield Bluegrass 2010 Lake Almanor & Mt. Lassen 2010
Las Vegas Expo Summergrass
   Brown Barn, Watsonville & Hobbs Grove
   
2011
Roundup 2011
Mariposa, Hensley, Table Mountain
Frog Camp 2011
Parkfield Bluegrass 2011 Frank, Pat, Dick & Ted's Excellent Adventure
Northern Coast Journey 2011 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2011
Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival Chilkoot & Stargazer Rock Camp
Kings River & Brown Barn Bluegrass Festivals Hensley Camp 2011
    
2012 
Parkfield Bluegrass 2012 Four Squaw Leap Hikes
Northern Coast Journey 2012 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2012
Stargazer Rock Camp 2012 Bluegrass in the Foothills 2012
A 3-Event Weekend
Farmer's Market, Kings River Bluegrass, Antique Fair
2012 Las Vegas CAN AM Hockey Challenge
Fall Hikes
Finegold Trail; Bower Cave
Into Los Gatos Canyon
  
2013
Silver Stick Tournament - Canada Sierra Foothills - Winter 2013
Finegold Trailhead, Hensley Lake, San Joaquin Gorge
Death Valley - Alabama Hills - Whitney Portal Sierra Foothills - Spring 2013
San Joaquin Gorge Hike, Big Creek Drive
Parkfield Bluegrass 2013 Shaver Crossing Station & Big Creek
Lake Almanor & Caribou Crossroads Mono Hot Springs
Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival A Wedding in Duluth
Sequoia Park Hiking Roundup 2013
Kings River Bluegrass, Buena Vista Peak Hike, Hensley Lake Camp, North Fork Mono Museum, White Rock Road, Hockey in Denver
     
2014
2014 Winter Hikes
Millerton South Bay Trail, Clovis Trail, Hite's Cove Trail
San Joaquin Gorge Campout
Colorado Springs Hockey Tournament Lake Havasu Bluegrass
2014 Spring Hikes
Stockton Creek Preserve, San Joaquin River Trail, San Joaquin Gorge, Millerton Lake, Sycamore Creek, Buena Vista Peak Again
NORCAL Hockey Playoffs and Santa Cruz Visit
Greeley Hill Road Trip Parkfield Bluegrass 2014
Journey of 2014 Journey of 2014 Photos
Nelder Grove Hikes 2014 Sentinel Dome Hike
2014 Fall & Winter Hikes
San Joaquin River Trail South & North, Red Rock Canyon Nevada, San Joaquin South Again
California Flat Campout
Snow Day with the  Upshaw's   
 
2015
Rambler Hikes 2015 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2015 Part 2
Adventures of 2015 - February to May
(Goofy Smith Flat, Coast Redwoods & Big Sur, Pine Flat, Finegold Trail, Edison Point Trail, Nelder Grove)
Adventures of 2015 - June to December
(Lewis Creek Trail, Kaiser Pass, Kaiser Pass Again, Taft Point, Kings River Bluegrass, Shaver Logging Road, San Joaquin River Trail, Lewis S Eaton Trail, San Joaquin River Gorge, Thanksgiving at the Gorge)
Lake Tahoe & Virginia City Parkfield Bluegrass 2015
Colorado Springs Cousin Convention 2015 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2015
Stargazer Rock Camp 2015 Grand Canyon & Arches National Parks
  
2016
Adventures of 2016 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2016 Page 1
Adventures of 2016 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2016 Page 2
Adventures of 2016 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2016 Page 3
Adventures of 2016 Part 4 A Pennsylvania Adventure
Adventures of 2016 Part 5 Parkfield Bluegrass 2016
Adventures of 2016 Part 6 Las Vegas Commodore Expo 2016
Adventures of 2016 Part 7 Stargazer Rock Camp 2016
     
2017
Adventures of 2017 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2017 Page 1
Adventures of 2017 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2017 Page 2
Adventures of 2017 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2017 Page 3
Adventures of 2017 Part 4 Hiking and Hockey
Adventures of 2017 Part 5 Lake Almanor
Adventures of 2017 Part 6 Northern California Redwood Hike
Parkfield Bluegrass 2017 Stargazer Rock Camp 2017
Travel Blog 2017 (an experiment) Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks
  
2018
Adventures of 2018 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2018 Page 1
Adventures of 2018 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2018 Page 2
Adventures of 2018 Part 3 Rambler Hikes 2018 Page 3
Adventures of 2018 Part 4 Parkfield Bluegrass 2018
Adventures of 2018 Part 5 Northern California Journey 2018
Adventures of 2018 Part 6
  
2019
Adventures of 2019 Part 1 Rambler Hikes 2019 Page 1
Adventures of 2019 Part 2 Rambler Hikes 2019 Page 2
Utah National Parks Rambler Hikes 2019 Page 3
Adventures of 2019 Part 3 Parkfield Bluegrass 2019
Adventures of 2019 Part 4
  
Other
Fresno Area Canal Walks Clovis Trail Walks
Butch's Blog Walker Family Trips
Parkfield Earthquake Kim & Morgan Brown Trips & Photos
Travel Report Menu Estel Home Page
Photo Albums Slide Shows
Laurie Lewis' High Sierra Hikes Email
   
 

Updated July 13, 2019