My wife and I hiked Jungle Creek Trail for the first time. We hiked from the southern trailhead on Jungle Creek Road to the saddle and back. The weather was mostly sunny and the temperature was around 65F in the morning and around 74F in the afternoon. There were a lot of flowers along the trail, good views of peaks in Stuart Range at the saddle.
The road to the trailhead is rough but passable even for a low clearance vehicle if you drive carefully. Our trusty Forester was able to manage this road fine but I heard branches scratching the body a few times. Unfortunately the coordinates given for the trailhead in WTA’s hiking guide was incorrect. It is 0.6 mile west of the actual location. We passed the trailhead not knowing this error and turned around and found the trailhead (47.3458, -120.8937). There is a small parking space for probably three cars on the south side of the road. The trailhead is on the north side of the road without any marking.
The trail starts out flat and crosses the creek six times. All of them are easy crossings except one that is difficult for hikers with a balance issue. After about 1.1 mile and 460 feet elevation gain and the last creek crossing, the trail starts climbing steadily towards the saddle. Trees in this area were burned by 2017 Jolly Mountain Fire and the shades are sparse. Bring a lot of water and sun screen when you hike on a sunny hot day.
We saw a lot of flowers, columbine, tiger lily, paintbrush, buckwheat, lupine, thimbleberry, starflower, larkspur, clematis, penstemon, silvercrown, rockcress, salsify, Oregon grape, arnica, biscuitroot, currant, wild rose, peavine, false Solomon's seal, etc. Some flowers were past their peak.
After about 2.2 miles and 1550 feet elevation gain, we arrived at the saddle a little past 12:30. A man with a dirt bike was waiting for us. He was joined by three other bikers shortly after. They were carrying a chainsaw and shovels and clearing downed trees and doing trail works. We appreciated their work.
We had lunch at the saddle and hiked a little higher on Wey Creek Trail for a better view of mountains in Stuart Range. Then we turned around and returned to our car at 3 pm. We saw no other humans than four dirt bikers.
More photos and our GPS track are in the links below.