When this walk was first suggested early last year, I had envisioned a late fall day with China Creek (as locals refer it to) or Asp Creek (named by the government) as a mere trickle. However, weather being what it has become (unpredictable) we found a creek with a considerable flow and snow on the ground! Nonetheless, a jolly atmosphere prevailed amongst the 11 participants doing the hike.
This area of about a kilometre or so follows China Creek, a wonderful oasis right in town. We were delighted with the magnificent Black Poplars, quite numerous in this ecosystem, especially when we gazed in awe at one that measured 14 feet 6 1/2 in circumference or 4 feet 7 inches in diameter! Also on view were Brown and Silver Birches, Douglas Firs, and Ponderosa Pines, all in wonderful, healthy condition.
A Kestrel was sighted even before we began our hike; other birds seen were the Pileated Woodpecker, Clark’s Nutcracker, Red-Breast Nuthatch, Mountain Chickadee, and a noisy squirrel (not bird related!).
Following a wooded path, we were surprised to find ourselves in an open meadow that continued for a short distance. We crossed the creek four times, then we followed a trail or path that eventually came out at the far western end of the airport. Here a good road takes you back to civilization, but we chose to come down the side hill and arrived in our backyard. The hike took two hours with many stops to admire the scenery and views.