Tom Paragi has been spearheading an effort to re-route the Mist Creek Trail after the 2019 Nugget Creek Fire. The trail takes off from the south side of Chena Hot Springs Road across from the CHSR 36.5 mile shooting range. Tom and Jim Brader installed reflecting diamond markers this weekend. The re-routed trail winds about 4.5 miles until it meets the Mastodon Trail about 3 miles from the Mastodon and Nugget public use cabins. The Mastodon Trail is currently not broken to the cabins, but Mist Creek is good to go now for exercise and nice views of the surrounding hills. Dress for wind at higher elevations.
This trail is good for snowshoeing and passable with backcountry skis (probably with skins) in winter. Hiking in summer requires crossing the Chena River by the shooting range. It’s not good for biking either season. The trail is a great overland access to the cabins and/or for packrafting access to the South Fork of the Chena River. It’s about half the distance of the Mastodon Trail.
Tom worked 20 years ago with several kindred spirits to re-open this old miner’s foot trail from the Gold Rush era that was a spur off the Chena Hot Springs trail. According to Tom, there’s still more to do. “A summer project will be clearing the ankle-grabbing deadfall that is now covered by snow.”
If you’re interested in helping out, contact Tom at firstname.lastname@example.org
Back in 2009, before the reroute and markers were put in, Jay Cable and Tom Moran used the Mist Creek Trail for a pack rafting trip. Jay wrote about it in his blog.
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