The best part about heading south is being able to hike in the woods. Typically to waterfalls.
A few years back, Bear joined me on a hike to Spoonauger Falls and then another hike to King Creek Falls. I’ve been to both waterfalls a few times and knew they were easy walks. Bear did great.
He even got to walk on a log and didn’t fall in!
This year, I took River on a hike to some new waterfalls: Miuka Falls and Secret Falls, both accessible via the Winding Stairs Trail.
River still has poor leash manners, but I decide to let her break all the rules as she pulled me along the first part of the trail. She was on a mission – find the falls.
Shortly into our journey, we discovered Miuka Falls.
We didn’t venture down the slippery, steep spur trail to get a better view. But since it was winter, we got a pretty good view that I’m sure is hidden in the summertime.
Since it didn’t take long to reach our destination, we decided to continue on to Secret Falls, thinking it was just a short walk past Miuka. We verified the directions before heading off down the switchbacks.
We came to the point in the trail where we thought we had to venture off for Secret Falls, but saw no trail or features to indicate where to go.
This glitch did not seem to bother River.
We decided to go further down the trail and see if anything jumped out. After one more turn, we heard the sound of water. Surely this was Secret Falls. We also saw a ribbon on a tree and a spur trail heading towards the sound of the water.
This spur trail was steeper than the last. River looked at it.
Then she looked at me as if to say “You’re kidding, right?”
Needless to say, we didn’t venture down. That didn’t stop our traveling companions.
We weren’t sure this was really Secret Falls, but at this point, we were all pretty tired. Instead of continuing on, we decided it was wise to head back up the trail. We had a long uphill hike left.
Towards the end, River was getting tired. When we finally reached the truck, she quickly settled down and slept the whole ride home.
Later that night, I used my google-foo to discover we hadn’t made it to Secret Falls. The spot we turned around was just a little bit further down the same creek as Miuka Falls. If we had continued longer on the trail we would have eventually found Secret Falls, which is on a completely different creek.
That just means we will have to return and hike it again in the future.