3584-3694 Joy Lake Road
Reno, NV 89511
With the help of a few tools (hiking backpack, carrier, and portable potty + Liners), we set off to what ended up being one of the most beautiful, challenging and rewarding hikes. The trail was filled with so many stunning views and different terrains. Going through the Galena forest and crossing tranquil Brown's creek was so refreshing. I would encourage everyone to go on this hike.
The first part of the hike before you get to the loop is through the woods with a gentle upward slope (about 1 mile). You will come to the 1st fork, which is worth stopping at- The Vista (only a couple of min away). There you'll find a bench, an amazing view, and an educational sign of a former family attraction named Sundown Town. The 2nd fork is the start of the loop (not far from the vista). If you take the left side, you will be going down the steeper side of the loop. Go right if you want more of a challenge.
There are 3 small bridges that cross the creek. We stopped at the first creek so the kids could wet their feet and have some fun. It was very nice, since there were trees all around to help supply shade. You will cross a 2nd bridge before you get to the third fork. We took the wrong turn at the 3rd fork and went straight into the "National Forest" (the sign for the loop was a little ways up with back of sign facing us) and ended up going up another 1.5 miles. This trail was nice and challenging and we ran into lots of people on mountain bikes. When we realized we were lost, we went back to the fork and found the sign. Instead of going straight, go upward and to the right to stay on track. After the 3rd fork, we crossed the 3rd bridge and made our way back to the parking lot.
My 5-year-old surprised me and walked the whole trail. My 4-year-old got tired at the 5-mile mark, at which point I carried him with a carrier. My 1-year-old took naps and enjoyed the views the whole time in the hiking backpack. At the end, we did a total of 8.5 miles. It was the most empowering and rewarding journey we had done as a family. We met a lot of cool dogs, saw a lot of wildflowers, and met a ton of nice people who stepped to the side for us.
*Dogs, horses, cyclists allowed
*Enter the Galena estates to get to trail entrance parking lot (on left) on Joy Lake Road
*The trail entrance is across the street a little way up from the parking lot going back toward entrance to Galena Estates
*Bring lots of water
*If hiking with kids, pack lots of snacks. We also packed a portable toilet for the kids and lots of sunscreen and hand sanitizer.
*There is plenty of shade throughout the hike, but there is also exposed areas.
*have your phone handy for emergencies
*if you download AllTrails, you can bring up their trail maps and track your location at all times with respect to highlighted trail (Next time, I won't forget to hike without it.)
*Both me and my daughter tripped on some rocks and got scrapes. Next time I will bring alcohol pads and bandages.
*trail is rocky so good footwear is recommended
*I saw a good amount of people with hiking poles, but you definitely can do without them
*Lots of vegetation, lizards, and insects to look at
*Around the loop is about 2.3 miles. The total mileage of Brown's Creek Trail is 4.8 miles.
*Spring and early summer wildflowers
-Sunscreen (after trying so many options, this is my family's favorite)
-Water Bottle (definitely a must in Reno's dry climate)
-hiking backpack (great view for kids, storage, nap friendly, shade)
-carrier (more afordable, light weight, shade, storage for keys)
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|Pick right side for more of a challenge to go up steep left side at end of loop. Left side to go down steeper side.|