Tag Archives: Umbrella Falls

Umbrella Falls (Summer 2018)

Directions: Take Highway 26 East past Government Camp to the junction with Highway 35. Follow Highway 35 for about 8 miles until you see a sign for Hood River Meadows. Take a left here and follow the road a short distance to the Elk Meadow Trailhead on the right shoulder of the road.

From the trailhead you will be starting out on the Elk Meadow Trail for a little over a quarter mile until you reach a signed junction. Go left here on the Umbrella Falls Trail, the trail starts out through a small meadow and then you start to hike uphill, the trail does get steep in areas. You will start to get views down into Mt. Hood Meadows off to your left and then pass under a ski lift. The trail switches back and you head up a short steep section that drops you into a wildflower filled meadow. We saw lots of lupine and paintbrush in this section.

      

      

The trail starts to level out a bit as you pass through more meadows with streams and get some views of the top of Mt. Hood off to your right. In these meadows the Beargrass was dominant and in full bloom. We were also lucky enough to be here during a California Tortoiseshell Butterfly migration- it was absolutely amazing how many butterflies we saw!

      

      

As you continue hiking you will come to a junction for Sahalie Falls. Stay straight here and a short distance later you will reach Umbrella Falls. We had bad lighting for any decent waterfall pictures but it was nice to sit and have lunch by the beautiful waterfall, and the mosquitoes weren’t too bad! Head back out the way you came.

      

Distance: 4 miles (easy)

Elevation: 800 feet (moderate)

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: Most- the trail does get steep in areas

Bathrooms: Yes at the parking area

Parking Fee: NW Forest Pass

Seasons: Late June through mid fall (check for snow before coming)

Popular: Yes

Warnings: None

Summer Hikes

Looking for a nice summer hike? Here’s a list of some of our favorites 🙂

If you’re looking to stay in Portland and the surrounding cities check out Oak Island, Mt. Talbert, or Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge. They are all easy hikes that have decent shade and lots of birds.

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We love hitting up all the great trails that the Mt. Hood area has to offer during the summer months. Tamanawas Falls and Umbrella Falls are great options if you are looking for a waterfall hike. For a lake hike check out Mirror Lake (and Tom, Dick, and Harry Ridge!), and Lower Twin Lake. Zigzag Canyon is also a really fun hike, go in mid to late June while the lupine is blooming!

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Some great summer Gorge hikes are Upper and Lower Latourell Falls, Gillette Lake, and Strawberry Island.

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Summer time is full of Kayaking as well, be sure to check out Scappoose Bay and Lost Lake!

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–Happy Hiking!

 

Umbrella Falls (Summer)

Directions: Take Highway 26 East past Government Camp to the junction with Highway 35. Follow Highway 35 for about 8 miles until you see a sign for Hood River Meadows. Take a left here and follow the road a short distance to the Elk Meadow Trailhead on the right shoulder of the road.

We did this hike this weekend when the wildfire smoke was really bad. We couldn’t see Mt. Hood at all and and could barely see any of the views down into the meadows. It was still a very nice hike though.

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From the trailhead you’ll start hiking on the Elk Meadow trail for a little over a quarter mile until you reach the junction with the Umbrella Falls trail. You’ll be taking a left onto the Umbrella Falls trail, it’s well signed. Follow this trail through a small meadow (we saw a cute little deer having breakfast here) and then the trail starts to climb a bluff. As you climb you’ll start getting views down into the meadows below and you’ll pass under ski lifts. The trail has two switchbacks that take you up to a meadow with wildflowers. You keep climbing as the trail skirts around a meadow and you would normally have views of the tip of Mt. Hood (we didn’t have any due to the smoke). As you pass between meadows and forested areas you will pass a few small streams.

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After about a mile and a half you’ll come to a junction with Sahalie Falls. The trail levels out here as you stay right for Umbrella Falls, it’s a little over a quarter mile away. There are lots of nice areas for pictures and to sit and have lunch, or relax. This year the water level was a lot lower but the waterfall was still very pretty.

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When you are ready just head back out the way you came in.

Distance: 4 miles

Elevation: 800 feet

Difficulty: Moderate

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: Yes

Parking Fee: $5 NW Forest Pass

Seasons: Late spring through fall.

Popular: No

Overall: Very scenic hike to a unique waterfall.