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Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Wildest Place in the Thornton Creek Watershed

Where is the wildest spot in the Thornton Creek Watershed? My opinion, after taking a little tour of the Jackson Park/Thornton Creek Park #1 is this place!

It's right under our noses, but it's hiding on the South end of Jackson Park. This is the former site of a pulp mill, long ago, before Jackson Park was a Golf Course. This stretch of Thornton Creek is blessed with seclusion and wildness. It has many acres of wetlands, forest and pretty good quality stream habitat.

Neighbor and park steward Kelly Dole, his family and neighbors have been watching over this spot for many years. Kelly has hosted work parties, and SPU has done some restoration projects, adding LWD (Large Woody Debris), and a few trails. 

Kelly has spotted huge cutthroat (some say the largest in the state) and coyotes.  During our visit we spotted a Sharpshin Hawk. Many other species find refuge here as well.

 Large stands of skunk cabbage show the presence of significant wetlands in this reach of Thornton Creek.

 Many huge trees have been free to grow in this stretch.

How to get to this wonderland. NE 130th between 10th and 15th NE. 
Please tread carefully and help preserve this fragile and magnificent urban open space. Pack it out if you bring it in! 

A trail is also being planned AROUND Jackson Park Golf Course, but it will leave this section untouched. 

 Enjoy it, but please tread lightly.

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