It was a four mile hike total, and we started a bit late so I was getting antsy as we got into range to hear the creek, which meant we were almost back to our start point. We got to the creek and stopped, flummoxed. There wasn't a way across. It wasn't very deep and maybe 20-25' wide, but it was flowing reasonably fast. We walked up and down stream but nothing. We could see the stairs on the other side of the creek that led up to the parking lot but had no good way to get there. We debated hiking 1/2 mile back (which would have been mostly uphill) to get back to the fire road, which we could have walked down to the car. I was about to suggest it when I realized J was taking off his shoes. His solution was to just wade over. He rolled up his pants, carried his shoes and socks and crossed. I followed and realized that the water was cold, and the rocks were pokey. It took me longer than it had taken him, but I made it. We climbed the stairs and at the top saw a sign that said the Dipsea bridge was out. It sure would have been helpful if they had put a sign anywhere coming in the other direction.
But it was a mini-adventure for my birthday, surprise creek wading. A decade ago I probably would have folded up and whimpered for a while, I'm rather proud of myself for doing it, even if I wasn't very quick. We plan to go back to Muir and I'd be curious to do the same hike in a different season to see what changes. And I might wade even if the bridge is back.