North Fork - Salmon River from Mule Bridge TH 2-21-20

Photos by Barry H. and Jerry

The Monday Scouting team (John, Rich, Jerry) were joined by Barry Harris, just returned from the flesh pots of South East Asia. Our goal was to take the PCT north from Etna Summit and discover a new hike. Everything went well until we discovered the weather gods had provided lots of snow at 5,900 feet. While lamenting our fate, a Ranger came along and we discovered some new opportunities. We continued on to a camp ground with a road leading to the Mule Brige TH and the North Fork Trail along the Salmon River. 

This proved to be a beautiful hike and we only ran into one barrier, a fast running small creek. Rich managed to hopscotch across below the normal crossing, not recommended for the less agile. Jerry then dynamically reached into his magic rucksack and pulled out two kitchen garbage bags. He and Barry managed to put these over their boots and legs and hobble across without getting wet, tossing back the bags with a stone in them. Quite a picture. I had trouble tying off the bags so I just said what the heck and marched across, getting wet but creating a rather cold cushion in my boots. Lunch was at a great viewpoint over the river. 

We had lost a garbage bag, so Jerry went back to his magic bag and pulled out two big black garbage bags. I threw up my hands and plowed back across the water while Rich went above the crossing and hopped across the rocks like a ballet dancer on steroids. Jerry and Barry arrived dry but with some impairment of their dignity, tromping across in black bags that looked like bloomers from the roaring twenties.

On the way back we discovered two more TH's to explore within the 2 hour maximum. Crazy beautiful day.  The scenery and weather were fabulous. We didn't do the intended hike but found out enough to include the one we did in our new hikes. Not only was the hike a winner, we found two more to explore later. Take a look at the pictures.

A round at Caldera sealed the deal. 

Track download: Mule Bridge Trail 2-21-20.gpx

To TH: Take I-5 South 37 miles to Exit 773 in Yreka. Follow Route 3 26 miles to Etna. At junction where Route 3 turns left, continue straight to Main Street and turn right. Main Street becomes Sawyer Bar Road.  Drive 10.6 miles to Etna Summit then continue 9 miles to Idlewild Camp Ground. Turn right onto Mule Bridge Road (FS 40N47) for 2 miles to TH. Cross the bridge and continue as far as desired on the North Fork Trail above the river. The Salmon River has a series of rapids for several miles. Distance Return: 190 Miles. Time to TH: 1 Hr 45 minutes.

Ashland Hiking Home

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Z01 Map to Mule Brg TH.jpg
Z01 Map to Mule Brg TH.jpg
Z02 Good signs - Turn here.jpg
Z02 Good signs - Turn here.jpg
Z03 Pretty good road.jpg
Z03 Pretty good road.jpg
Z04 Several miles of this.jpg
Z04 Several miles of this.jpg
Z05 Off we go.jpg
Z05 Off we go.jpg
Z06 Your intrepid explorers.jpg
Z06 Your intrepid explorers.jpg
Z08 N. Fork Salmon Rv.jpg
Z08 N. Fork Salmon Rv.jpg
Z10 Rv and trail are @37 miles long.jpg
Z10 Rv and trail are @37 miles long.jpg
Z11 Rich posing in burn out.jpg
Z11 Rich posing in burn out.jpg
Z12 Barry utilizing Jerry's river boots.jpg
Z12 Barry utilizing Jerry's river boots.jpg
Z14 Tanners Pk wants us to climb it.jpg
Z14 Tanners Pk wants us to climb it.jpg
Z15 Google Road Map to TH.jpg
Z15 Google Road Map to TH.jpg
Z16 KML inserted into Google Earth.jpg
Z16 KML inserted into Google Earth.jpg
Z18 Gaia  data.jpg
Z18 Gaia data.jpg