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Dismal Creek
March 27, 2004

The real star of the morning's show was not the increasingly popular Glory Hole waterfall, but the little stream which feeds it. I gladly accepted an invitation from Charles and Jen to go with them on their first trip down to the Glory Hole, after yet another family camping trip was cancelled due to wet weather forecasts. We met up at 7 a.m. and arrived in time to have the area to ourselves for only about 30 minutes before group after group came down the trail to see the waterfall.
On the hike in, just uphill from the creek we started hearing a lot of splashing that turned out to be a nice six-foot waterfall. We took a small side trail down to the waterfall and followed the creek downstream from there.
The creek tumbled down a gentle slope dotted with the white blooms of serviceberry and green pines. There was one point where a brief gust filled the air with little white petals blown from the serviceberry flowers. Most of the time the creek flowed across wide flat rocks, but sometimes it ran down narrow channels or paused in shallow pools. There were also some nice cascades and small falls.
When we arrived above The Glory Hole, Charles climbed down to take pictures directly above the top of the hole while I took a higher vantage point and tried to get some pictures of all the mosses. The splashing of the water directly above the hole also caught my eye.
We didn't venture any farther than directly below the bluff, although at least I got a few pictures of the awesome bluffs and house-sized boulders just downstream. Another mile of Dismal Creek downstream is part of this forest service "special interest area." I guess I'll just have to come back in the fall and check it out!
On the hike back I crossed paths with a huge garter snake. It patiently waited for me to change memory cards in the camera so I could get its portrait.
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