Naomi Peak and Cherry Creek , 16 September, 2018
Nine Cache Hikers enjoyed a pleasant Sunday of hiking: Dave W., Dave P., Jane, Susan, Dan, Brent, Maggie, Antonia, and Teresa (the leader). We started hiking from Tony Grove at 9:15 a.m. after paperwork and payment for parking. Tony Grove was tranquil, with only a handful of cars in the parking lot.
The flower season was past but the group enjoyed brief geological feature stops on their way upward to Naomi Peak (highest peak in the region, at nearly 10,000 ft). We noticed a recently repaired signpost that clearly directs hikers toward Naomi Peak versus White Pine Lake, we observed the "Giant Staircase" of quartzite rocks above Tony Grove, and we were treated to views of hawks and a Clark's nutcracker soaring overhead. The weather started out pleasantly cool with blue skies, and only a slight smokiness affecting distant views, and rose quickly to a pleasant warmth.
We had lunch around noon on the peak, with a 360° view and some cooling brisk winds. Soon after leaving the peak the group parted ways. Seven stalwart hikers headed west into the Mt. Naomi Wilderness toward Cherry Creek. Jane and Dave P. returned to Tony Grove and generously drove back down the canyon through Cache Valley through Richmond to pick up the other hikers at the Cherry Creek trailhead.
The Cherry Creek hikers zigzagged down the west side of Naomi Peak to the ridge overlooking High Creek Lake, hiked through the bowl south of Cherry Peak, ascended to the saddle but did not stop to climb the peak. They continued hiking to the south and west past Cherry Peak while enjoying marvelous views of upper Smithfield Canyon, Cache Valley, and distant Wellsvilles as they hiked down the ridge. From here, it was hiking down and down and down and down into Cherry Creek canyon.
After the ridge the trail turned toward the north, eventually reaching Cherry Creek and the first water we had seen since leaving Tony Grove. Another 2.7 miles west down Cherry Creek Canyon and we reached a short stretch of dirt road past a private inholdings and bull-dozed land to the (recently relocated) Cherry Creek trailhead parking area about 6:00 p.m. Drivers Jane and Dave P. were patiently waiting there and everyone was back in Logan by 7:00 p.m.
It was an unusually long but very rewarding day: about 10 miles, with about 2500 feet of ascent and 4700 feet of descent.
Thanks to Teresa for the description, Dave P., Dave W. and Jane for photos and Dave W. for the GPS data