Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Black Hole Falls

On Memorial Day my dear homie Francis and I embarked on a nearly three hour drive in the pouring rain to find (and lose, and find again) the elusive trail to Black Hole Falls.

The North Siouxon Creek trailhead is located up a steep gravel forest road; FR #1000, spray painted on trees every mile or so as the road continually parts toward random, unmarked offshoots.

This wet wonderland was full of creative creek crossings, often over giant, fallen trees. A landscape ripe with large clovers, maidenhair fir, and uninterrupted mushroom growth. Old cedars split open to expose blood red flesh deeper even in hue than their bark. The rain and the river created a misty atmosphere that added greatly to the ascent....and descent...not a standard climb to a peak, but a winding expedition full of unpredictable up's and down's.

Despite considering a turn around at the 3 mile mark, we instead took a quick beer break before pushing on for another hour to the waterfall. I stuffed my leggings with an extra pair of socks and a shirt, which helped to sop up a few hours of rain. All in all, we were super stoked (and soaked) and proud to finish the trail after so many weeks of inactivity. I feel like I'm breathing life back in my bones one muddy boot print at a time.

In the spirit of True Crime Garage, I'd give the Tropic Haze IPA a solid 3.5/5 Bottle caps

 The gorgeous and remote Siouxon wilderness blew me away. I'm excited to spend Summer 2020 exploring more of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, as well as the Dark Divide- the mysterious wilderness that lurks between Mt. St. Helens and Mt. Adams. As the itch to move increases and I fantasize about what/where is next, I want to soak up my current access to the arcane South Cascades.

  Trail Specs:
10.5 miles
2200 ft. elevation gain

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