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Deep Creek Hot Springs

The Moon is Waxing Gibbous (80% of Full)


Trip Report, Friday, 7/27

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July 28, 2012 10:23AM
It has not been a great season of DCHS visits for me this year; too busy. I usually don’t go too often in July/August - school’s out, summer temps. But since I haven’t been much at all in the spring, I decided to head out there Friday.

There is still July gloom (!) in LA these days, so it was nice to escape the fog somewhere along the 210 close to Rancho Cucamonga, and of course a beautiful clear day up near Hesperia. As Johnny reported, the Bowen Ranch Road is not in terrible shape, but it is all washboard and you will be bounced. I finally made good on my repeated claim on this board to get a 4WD vehicle with some clearance, and it makes all the difference. Arrived at the ranch around 8:30 am. Reports on this board about the repair of the road from the ranch house down to the parking have been greatly exaggerated. The road is in the same terrible shape. New vehicle however had no problems with this at all. Just be warned!

Only one car in the lot at that time in the morning. No campers, no campsites. Just one car. So I took my time, got ready for the hike, and free-hiked all the way down. It was an absolutely beautiful hike, and as expected, I passed or saw no one at all. It was the first time upon arriving at the point of the trail where you can see the springs area from above, that I witnessed seemingly no campers on the beach, no sign of human presence. At all!

Confirming other reports on the board: the graffiti along the trail is terrible, and there is a shocking amount of it now. A month + ago, my last trip, none of this was there.

I arrived creek side, pretty sweaty from the hike. The springs seemed abandoned and quiet. I put my things down and ran into the creek, low and shallower now, but still cool to a hot hiker. Splashed around a bit and bathed, and only after two minutes or so realized there was a beautiful young woman sunbathing nude on the rocks facing the beach just a few yards from me. She totally blended in, humans are camouflaged like that. So I wasn’t alone. I made my way as is my habit directly to the Womb for a morning and shaded soak, and found there were two people in that pool as well, a couple about my age, one from SF, one from the OC, more beautiful (literally) people. They were the only ones who seemingly camped or slept by the creek the night before. They reported that Thursday had been kind of busy, and at night lots of people came down, I think maybe they said others had slept by the creek but hiked out at first light. But at 9 am on a Friday morning, there were just four people at the springs.

It was one of the most peaceful days there I can remember, I was really surprised. At the most crowded, maybe ten people. Until 2 pm or so, almost everyone was nude and skinny dipping. In the afternoon, more people wore their suits, but there was always about four or five naturists. I saw no regulars that I recognized, there was no one living by the creek, no crazies, no partiers, none of the young people who came down seemingly brought anything to camp with, no cases of booze, just day trippers having a good time.

On the bad news side, the place was pretty trashed. Garbage all over: broken glass on the arrival beach, and piles of garbage including a roller suitcase (!). Random shoes, bathing suits a plenty (!), underwear, wrappers, camping equipment. I picked some small things up and collected things before I left but not a major amount given my own things I was carrying.

Critters of the day: You’ve all been mentioning the fish. Yes, fish, I agree! They were everywhere and if you sat in the creek in the shallows, you became their daily meal. They nibble at you, and swim all around, I guess eating dead skin? Lots of baby catfish. But the best critter was the bat that has taken up residence in a small crack in the shadows near the shower area. It was squeaking all day, which is why I noticed it, up there in its crack. This has replaced the small baby birds in a nest that were in that area a month back.

Free hiked out at around 5:30. Still hot, but that is why free hiking makes sense. I drink a whole 2 liter bottle of water while doing the hike out, and make good time and work up a nice sweat again. Friday night free hike, and again, saw or passed no one. Not a single person descending to the springs. Totally alone in nature. Back at the lot, no one was there. On the Bowen Ranch road back to “civilization,” passed only one car heading to the springs (I assume), a van with a bunch of young people.

Quiet Friday, indeed. I guess I was lucky, but I took it as a good sign for peaceful hot springers.

Trip Report, Friday, 7/27

neogeo2506July 28, 2012 10:23AM

Re: Trip Report, Friday, 7/27

Paul P.903July 28, 2012 08:17PM

Re: Trip Report, Friday, 7/27

neogeo964July 29, 2012 12:03AM

Re: Trip Report, Friday, 7/27

Paul P.948July 29, 2012 08:34AM

Re: Trip Report, Friday, 7/27

mxa1325August 11, 2012 10:38PM

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