A couple of weekends ago, we decided to head out of the city and go on our first Pacific Northwest hike. While Matt would’ve liked to summit Mt. Hood, it’s unfortunately snow-capped and we have zero winter clothes with us, so Multnomah Falls it was!
About 30 miles east of downtown Portland, through the Columbia River Gorge, is a moderate hike that meanders through the woods between two giant waterfalls. We started at the much more popular Multnomah Falls and ended the hike at Wahkeena Falls. The falls were 600ft and powerful! There was so much spray coming off of them, that the raincoats really came in handy.
There were a lot of people there that morning, but it seemed that most were just there for the shops at the bottom. Once we got past the bridge over the falls (~.25 miles) the number of people on the trail dropped by about 75%, then once we passed the lookout point (~1 mile) the trail was all but deserted. We enjoyed the moderate 5 mile loop as it climbed up and down and passed a handful of smaller waterfalls. Snickers especially enjoyed running through all the mud.
Although Wahkeena Falls was significantly less crowded, it was just as beautiful as Multnomah. It literally took my breath away…seriously, the wind and spray was so powerful on the bridge across it that it knocked the wind out of me. Oof. At the end of the hike, we got a gorgeous view of Washington across the Columbia River.
Overall it was a great day hike and we’d recommend it if you’re in the area. Oh, and afterwards we had a lunch of champions: donuts and beer 🙂 (Voodoo Donuts and Culmination Brewing for inquiring minds)