The Baldy Creek Trailhead is located on the north side of the North Fork John Day Wilderness along the Elkhorn Drive Scenic Byway where Baldy Creek joins the Wild and Scenic North Fork John Day River. The site is frequented by summertime day hikers, backpackers, horseback riders and during fall hunting season. A primary attraction of the area is the hike into Baldy Lake.
The site provides access to Baldy Creek Trail # 1603 which lies almost entirely within the North Fork John Day Wilderness, providing access to the remote Baldy Creek drainage country, Baldy Lake, and the open ridges above the Cable Cove area. The trail follows and crosses Baldy Creek many times. It passes spruce, fir, and lodgepole pine forest; grassy openings: and some boggy areas. The old Cal-Pacific power line corridor, installed in the early 1900's is still visible, intersecting the trail about 5 miles from the lower trailhead.
Baldy Lake sits in a serene subalpine basin under Mt. Ireland. The fire lookout on top of the peak can be seen from the lake's north shore. One-quarter mile before Baldy Lake, a trail forks off across the head of the east fork of Baldy Creek up to the end of Forest Road 5540-920 just below Crown Point. For a sweeping view of the historic Cable Cove mining area, take a short walk up the old road which has no public vehicle access.