|Guide||♦||10 Triplogs||1 Topic|
Pinch of Fab guarded by Better Hikes
Charcoal Gulch Trail #9419 begins at the Green Gulch TH. The final leg utilizes old Bannie Mine Road aka FS 9426 to an unsigned(needs to be verified) junction with Nemo Spring Trail #9405. FS 9426 continues down yet there is no difference in the scree-filled luge-track that once was Bannie Mine Road.
Head west on the double-track trail. Hiking is very easy but you might cross side to side depending on which side is more favorable. 0.5 mi in Nemo Spring Trail #9405 hooks left. Ignore a right at 0.7 mi. At 0.95mi/160ft the easiest grade is over, Red Mountain Trail #43 continues forward and Charcoal Gulch Trail #9419 turns left.
The trail narrows and incline doubles but it's still easy. Watch your step for easily avoidable ankle buster rocks. The chaparral lined trail is mostly Mountain Mahogany. No catclaw riddled horror or notable bushwhacking on most of these Bradshaw OHV trails. One-seed Junipers and oaks increase at 1.3mi.
About 2.25 mi in it feels more prime hiking vs OHV. In the next half mile the trail dips though a tributary with Charcoal Spring (off-trail 750 ft up) before going around Upper Charcoal Tank. The trail has plenty of shade for almost a mile to the origin of Charcoal Gulch.
Salida Trail #93 turns right at 3.7 mi, which happens to be within ft of the highpoint for Charcoal. A 0.4 mi RT ascent up #93 takes you to 6,730. An excellent break option with views. However, shade favors late afternoon for favored positional views. If you're looking for an out-n-back 6,730 or the #93 junction might be your best turn around.
Continuing on it an old road and the final tall pines are gone very soon. It's still a nice walk to 4.2 mi.
The trail utilizes old Bannie Mine Road at 4.5 mi. If you are determined, bring a rock gliding toboggan by 4.65 mi. I hiked the trail in reverse with Nemo first. It's no big deal ascending but do use caution descending as this guide reads. There are nice sections too. Just warning the footing descending might be undesirable to some as the grade increases down to Nemo Spring Trail #9405.
For me, the trail offers a 3.5 out of 5 experience. The upper 2-ish miles are prime. Getting there won't interest thrill-seekers nor find it a thrill.
The FS website says Temporarily CLOSED for rehabilitation following the Goodwin Fire. Work is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. Obey all official signage. No closed signs at either end of this trail, only in the middle on April 25th, 2020.
Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.
This hike is listed as One-Way.
When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.