Tag Archives: Hot Weather Hikes

Steelhead Falls (Spring 2016)

Directions: Take Highway 26 East to Highway 97 South. Just before the town of Terrebonne take a right onto Lower Bridge Way and drive for 2 miles. Next, take a right onto NW 43rd and follow this road for almost 2 miles where you go left on Chinook Drive. About a mile later you will come to Badger Road on your left, follow this road for about 2 miles and take a right onto Quail Road. After a little over a mile take a left onto River Road and follow it to the end where you will find the parking area.

From the trailhead follow the marked trail as you start to gradually go downhill. You will soon start to see the Deschutes Gorge and hear the river below. From here the trail starts to go downhill more steeply as you get down to river level. Some parts of the trail are eroding a little bit but it’s all pretty straightforward and maintained.

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As you follow the river around a bend you will start to see the top of the waterfall. The trail takes you to a wide flat viewing area. Steelhead Falls isn’t very tall but it’s quite pretty, and so is the surrounding area! This is the end of the hike so head back out the way you came. This hike can get really busy in the summer, it’s a popular area for cliff jumping and swimming.

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Distance: 1 mile (easy)

Elevation: 120 feet (easy)

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: Yes at the parking area.

Parking Fee: None

Seasons: All but check ahead during winter months.

Popular: Yes during the summer months.

Warnings: None

Wapato Greenway (Winter 2016)

Directions: Take Highway 30 West to Sauvie Island. After crossing the bridge follow Sauvie Island Road (make sure to stay on Sauvie Island Road at the fork) to the Wapato Access Trailhead on the left.

From the parking area, cross through the gate and follow the wide flat trail for a short distance until you reach a picnic area. From here go right and follow the trail along Virginia Lake. The lake will be on your left and some farms will be on your right. As you continue on and go past the lake you’ll round a corner and cross a small footbridge.

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From here the trail continues on through trees and you’ll soon get glimpses of the Multnomah Channel on your right. A short distance later the trail splits. Go left, crossing a bridge that takes you to a bird blind with views of a pond. Continue on the trail for a short distance and take the short side trail to the left that takes you to a viewing platform for Virginia Lake. When you’re ready to leave, head back to the main trail that takes you to the picnic area again, completing the loop.

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Distance: 2 miles (easy)

Elevation: 30 feet (easy)

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: No

Parking Fee: None

Seasons: All

Popular: Yes

Warnings: None

Tamanawas Falls (Autumn 2015)

Directions: Take Highway 26 past Government Camp to the junction with Highway 35. Follow 35 for about 15 miles. The trailhead is just past Sherwood Campground on the left shoulder of the highway.

To see our first post on Tamanawas Falls click here.

From the parking area the trail immediately enters the woods and quickly comes to a bridge that crosses the Hood River. After crossing the bridge take a right and follow the trail as it starts to head uphill to a viewpoint of the highway below. The trail then heads downhill to a junction (it’s well marked), stay straight and cross another bridge, this time over Cold Spring Creek. From here the the trail heads uphill, with the creek always visible to your left.

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After about a mile of following along the creek the trail opens up a bit and you come to a junction. Follow the sign pointing you towards the falls as you enter a big rock fall area. The trail winds through large rocks and switches back one time as you enter back into a more forested area. From here it’s just a short distance until you start to see the waterfall. The trail will drop you off right at Tamanawas Falls. This is an out-and-back trail, so head back the way you came in.

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The main difference this time was definitely water level. The waterfall was much less full but still very beautiful. Also, there were three big downed trees on the trail from the recent wind storm. They hadn’t been cleared away yet but the trail was still passable. I’m sure they won’t be there for long.

Distance: 4 miles (easy)

Elevation: 600 feet (moderate)

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: Porta-potty at the trailhead.

Parking Fee: $5 Northwest Forest Pass

Seasons: Late spring through fall.

Popular: Yes

Warnings: None