Deep Creek and its tributary, Holcomb Creek, flow from the heart of the San Bernardino Mountains northward to the Mojave Desert in southern California. the creek is an important migration corridor for wildlife. Supporting the greatest diversity of habitats on the San Bernardino National Forest, the creek flows through an area of high ecological significance. The high quality aquatic and riparian habitats of the creeks support the endangered arroyo toad, willow fly-catcher (an endangered neotropical songbird), and California spotted owl. Deep Creek is a state-designated Wild Trout Stream popular with anglers.
Historically, Native Americans used the stream corridor to seasonally migrate between the mountains and desert. Today, the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) follows Holcomb and Deep Creeks on its journey from Mexico to Canada. The creek is also a popular day use destination for hikers, equestrians, anglers, swimmers, and picnickers.
The 2019 John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act protected 34.5 miles of Deep Creek and Holcomb Creek as National Wild and Scenic Rivers.