This very popular trail provides access to the southeast portion of the Lost Creek Wilderness Area. The trail is 9.6 miles long and ends in Wigwam Park at a junction with the Wigwam Trail, 609. The Goose Creek Trail offers primitive camping, good fishing and great vistas. At mile 3.9 is a side trail leading to several historic buildings and the remains of a shaft house. These structures remain from an attempt to build a reservoir on Lost Creek at the turn of the century.
The McCurdy Park Trail, 628, intersects the Goose Creek Trail at mile 6.5. A popular backpacking trip is to hike the Goose Creek Trail to McCurdy Park Trail, then turn left and follow the McCurdy Park Trail to the intersection with Brookside Trail, 607. Walk south for 1 mile to Lake Park Trail, 639, and follow it to Hankins Pass Trail, 630. Travel east on Hankins Pass Trail to the Goose Creek Trailhead. The distance of the loop is 24 miles.
This narrative describes the first 6.5 miles of the Goose Creek Trail to its intersection with the McCurdy Park Trail. From the trailhead sign follow a spur trail .2 miles to a wooden foot bridge. Across the bridge is a trail junction where Hankins Pass Trail leads west (left) and Goose Creek Trail leads east (right). At mile .6 you will reach a large metal footbridge that crosses Goose Creek. Ten minutes past this bridge you will come to an open, grassy area suitable for camping. (There are also campsites on the opposite side of Goose Creek. To reach these sites return to the metal bridge and follow the path along the opposite side of Goose Creek.) Approximately 20 minutes past the metal bridge you will reach an unmarked fork in the trail. The left fork is a small path leading to the Creek. The main trail follows the right fork up the hill. From this point the trail begins to gain elevation. After hiking 7 or 8 minutes past the fork look to the northwest and locate a "thumb-like" rock spire high on the formation. To the right of the "thumb" you will see an arch in the rocks.
At mile 3.9 a sign marks the turn off to the historic buildings and shaft house remains. At this point the trail begins to gain elevation rapidly before dropping into Watkins Gulch. The trail then begins to gain elevation in a northwest direction, reaching McCurdy Park Trail at mile 6.5. The Goose Creek Trail continues straight (north) to a saddle east of Peak 10,459 before dropping into Wigwam Park. The distance from the junction to Wigwam Park is 3.1 miles and the elevation gain to the saddle is slightly over 700' above the junction. The McCurdy Park Trail leads west (left) from the junction.
Directions from Bailey: From Bailey, drive east on Highway 285 to Pine Junction. Turn south (right) at Pine Junction on to Jefferson County Road 126 toward Pine and Buffalo Creek. Drive 21.8 miles on County Road 126. Turn south (right) on to Forest Service Road 211 that leads to Cheesman Reservoir. Travel 2 miles and turn west (right) at the sign pointing to Goose Creek. Drive 1.1 miles in a westerly direction until you reach a fork in the road. Bear left at the fork and stay on 211. From this fork drive 5.2 miles to a road intersection south of Molly Gulch Campground. Turn right and drive 4.7 miles to the Goose Creek Trailhead access road. Half way along this road you'll pass Goose Creek Campground. At the trailhead access sign turn north (right) and drive 1.3 miles to the trailhead parking.
Mid-Spring through Late Fall .