Fortune Creek - July 2014

Fortune Creek Trail is in the national forest area north of Cle Elum Lake. Its highlighted green on the map.

Trail Details

This was a very easy run. The trail is not very steep and not much in the way of off camber. There is a logging road that runs parallel to the first part so if you want to skip past that its easy to get almost all the way to the end before ever even noticing your off road. But, its more interesting and fun to take the jeep trail which is just south of the logging road.

At the beginning of the run, there are some right forks that just lead to dead ends or camping areas and should be passed by. Later on, there are a number of left hand forks that lead to camping, or back up to the logging road. Dont get fooled into thinking the trail crosses the creek like we did and stay on the road.

The last quarter of the trail is the steepest and hardest with quite a bit of rocks and would be harder when wet but when we went through the roads at least were very dry. Thankfully its not a long part. There are a few small stream crossings. This is where Will's Xterra got a small puncture in one of its tires, which we had to keep pumping up every few hours. (Possibly, it was from the creek bed)


There are a few campsites along the way, and one we discovered by accident in the middle of the creek. Many more at Galagher head lake. All are primitive... so bring your deoderant and your poop bucket. Bring your windbreaker and your warm sleeping bag too... at nearly 6000ft its going to be cold and windy at night, and if there is any kind of cloud cover you will likely be in the middle of it. Even in late july there was still quite a bit of snow on the ground, enough to keep the many streams very gurgly and noisy and COLD.

We saw quite a bit of critters. Deer, chipmunks, and bees. There were many "half" tunnels exposed where critters had been moving around under the snow. There were fish in the lake.


The one thing we wished we had brought on this trip and didn't was bug spray. Even in late july, there was still quite a bit of alpine snow cover and the streams (and bugs) were very active. The biting insects are tough and watch out for poison ivy/oak. Any kind of antihistamine, cortizone, or calamine lotion will be very welcome in this area.