Big Creek Professional Guide
Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook
"In this pretty and often sun-drenched mountain meadow campground well off the busy St. Joe River Road lies a story. It begins (as Cort Conley recounts in his book Idaho for the Curious) with Fred Herrick, a timber entrepreneur from Wisconsin, who salvaged timber after the massive 1910 fire ripped through this area. For a time his company was the largest independent timber producer in the inland Northwest, but the Great Depression wiped him out.
His abandoned logging camp was turned into a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp in the New Deal years, and those CCC workers built the foundation of the forest road system that today connects St. Maries to Avery and beyond; before then, only boat or railroad (the old Milwaukee Railroad followed the St. Joe River) travel was possible. With World War II, all was abandoned except for a local bar, but soon a notorious double murder closed even that; all the buildings were razed, and today’s campground eventually was built. Most of today’s campers have no idea how many ghosts abound in this quiet mountain setting."