Track download from Jerry: Mill Creek Falls 5-1-23.gpx
On the first day of May, 15 hikers celebrated the bounty of water poured on Jackson county after years of drought. We drove 42 miles up Highway 62 to the Mill Creek Scenic Area (Prospect) to experience three gushing waterfalls and the raging Upper Rogue River.
The trail winds down through the thick forest to views of first Mill Creek Falls that drops 173' into the Rogue and then a short distance to hike up onto a stone outcropping to view Barr Creek Falls with its' majestic 242' drop.
Over the constant roar of the falls and the river, the group stood spellbound by the epic scene then remembered en masse to start snapping their cameras.
After our time visiting the neighboring falls, we backtracked up the trail to a right turn at the intersection and a drop down to the Avenue of the Giant Boulders (on the Rogue). Along the way we stopped for our group picture up on a moss covered rock wall. We also saw new flowers sprouting in the shade of the forest, including Calypso Orchids, Solomon Seal, Western Trillium, Snow Queen, Evergreen Violets (first sighting), and three flowering shrubs, pink Manzanita, red Currant and Fuschia-like red and pink Gooseberry Ribes.
At the Giant Boulders, we climbed up on the big rocks to get an up close view of the Rogue as it roared downstream through dozens of boulders and constant white water, (a category 6 meaning impassable rapids).
Nearby we found the remaining structure of Prospect's first electric power plant (circa 1911) that channeled Rogue water to turn a paddle wheel that helped create electric energy.
After those views, we headed back up the trail to parking and drove another quarter mile across the bridge to the next lot for a view of Pearsony Falls and lunch.
Pearsony Falls is on the Upper Mill Creek and splits around an island in the creek before dropping in front of our revellors. Again the creek was high and fast, but three in the group did cross on the big wet log to the other side.
After lunch, we took the trail out to the top of the canyon wall to look down on the raging Rogue. Then we continued along the top of the wall to where Mill Creek rushes over the wall to form the plummeting waterfall, a breathtaking view.
Heading back from parking we stopped by the bridge to get one last view of the roaring Rogue and its' white water.
Quite an inspiring day and only 4.4 miles to see all those wonders of nature!
Post hike some of us stopped at Liz's to see her color parade of blooming tulips!