Hike Into the Dry Creek Wilderness Area
  The name of this creek has always made me think that a good rain would be needed before exploring its depths. It seems that this is probably only true in the dryer months. Dry Creek Wilderness Area has a smallish footprint at 6,300 acres. By comparison Richland creek has 11,800 acres and Upper buffalo has 12,000 acres. It sits in a giant bowl of a valley with boundaries at the surrounding ridge tops. There is one opening where the water flows out to the west. The bear population here is supposed to be healthy so beware of the high probability of death when entering this depression from hell. If you survive seek help at nearby Booneville. 
  After a Denny's breakfast in Russellville the towns of Dardanelle and Danville were passed through while breaking all speed limit laws undetected. FS 51 borders on the south and this was my entry. At 5:45 a.m. Friday morning with 41° on the ridge, my hike began with a leisurely 3 mile stretch of dirt road. Curiously the puddles on the road were frozen. My headlamp spotted many bears fleeing into the woods on my approach...no doubt aware of my reputation for skunk warfare. Soon the forest surrounded me. On this north facing slope the tree composition was mainly hardwoods with occasional pines and such. Upon reaching Dry Creek several waterfalls were observed with flowing water upon their surfaces. Many trees were down from, most likely, the ice storm that hit around here and the Mt Magazine area last winter...I believe it was. This valley is extremely rocky. The combination of rocks and dead wood make for a less than optimal boot contact area. Add some ice around the creek and, once again...certain death. Add the bears and...well, you know.
  The creek was traced downstream and its character improved with my advance. Timber trash was still a 50% proposition throughout the valley floor. Many shale-like bluffs lined the outer bends of this creek. Numerous cedars and pines were spread around the south facing slopes. The sun did warm the creek bed quickly and it went from 33° to 55° by 11:00. Around noon lunch was had and afterwards the climb out of the valley was undertaken. My hike ended at 1:40 with 8 miles behind me. Overall this is an interesting place but the dead tree count borders on...not good. No bears were seen.

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