Tag Archives: Wahclella Falls

Wahclella Falls (Autumn)

Directions: Take I-84 east to exit 40 (Bonneville Dam). Take a right at the stop sign and go right at the fork where you will see the parking area.

We have also hiked Wahclella Falls in the Winter and Spring seasons.

From the parking area follow the wide flat path past a gate as it follows along Tanner Creek. Soon you will come to a Dam where the trail takes a sharp left and immediately comes to a bridge that takes you right next to Munra Falls.

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From here the trail gradually starts to head uphill as you get great views of the creek below. The trail is pretty rocky the whole way and has some pretty muddy spots with some fencing in it to prevent erosion. There is a small staircase with wooden steps and a short distance later you will come to a split in the trail.

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Head right at the split and go down a couple switchbacks that take you to a bridge. After crossing the bridge you will be in a large rock slide area. There is a nice little seasonal runoff to the right coming from way up on the cliffs. You will soon start seeing the waterfall as you continue around and through a small almost cave or grotto like area. Cross yet another bridge and you will be at the main viewing area for Wahclella Falls.

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When you’re ready, continue the loop as you climb up between a few large rocks to the upper trail. As you go along the upper trail you will see the lower trail and rock slide area below. Soon you will be back at the split in the trail, go straight and get back on the main trail where you will follow it back to your car.

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Autumn at Wahclella Falls is great, the upper tier is much more visible and Munra Falls water level is nice and full. Tanner Creek is moving swiftly and the colors are great.

Distance: 2 miles

Elevation: 300 feet

Difficulty: Easy

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: Porta-potties at the trailhead.

Parking Fee: Yes a $5 NW Forest Pass

Seasons: All

Popular: Yes

Overall: This is a great easy hike for all seasons. Can’t beat two waterfalls in two miles either!

Winter Hikes

Winter

Winter can be a great time to get out and hike. The trails aren’t very busy, water levels are nice and full, and the crisp air is refreshing. 

Here are a few of our favorite hikes that are great for the winter season. Clicking on the links will take you to a more detailed post with directions.

Mt. Tabor: This well maintained city park is a great choice on those chilly days where you want to get out for a quick hike.

Wahclella Falls: This waterfall is at it’s best when it’s nice and full. Just be careful, the trail can get a little icy if we’ve had low temps.

Bayocean Spit: Located in the Tillamook area, this hike is a nice option on those cold but clear winter days. It would also be a great beachcombing hike after a winter storm.

Silver Falls State Park: This trail of 10 waterfalls is a State Park so the trails are always well maintained. You won’t have to worry about running into trail damage after a winter storm.

Little Zigzag Falls: This short hike is a nice addition to any snowshoeing or skiing activities you have planned this winter.

Powell Butte: Great year-round hike that’s in SE Portland.

Hug Point Falls: Good option for those rainy days. It’s a quick walk to a small beach waterfall.

**Frozen Gorge Waterfalls: If we end up having an extended period of freezing weather, you should definitely check out some of the waterfalls that are just off the Old Highway. Here are some frozen waterfalls we saw in 2013 and 2014.

We hope everyone has a great time enjoying winter in Oregon!

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Wahclella Falls (Spring)

Directions: Take I-84 east to exit 40 (Bonneville Dam). Take a right at the stop sign and go right at the fork where you will see the parking area.

When we first visited Wahclella Falls it was the middle of winter, frost lined the trail and there were even icy spots along the way. This visit was so much different! It’s spring, the temperature was in the low 70’s and the sun was shining like crazy.

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This hike starts on an old access road that takes you past a damn used by the fish hatchery. Right after the dam you’ll round a corner and walk right up to Munra Falls. After crossing the bridge over Munra Falls you’ll you’ll continue following the trail along Tanner Creek.

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You’ll gain a bit of elevation and even climb some stairs along the trail. Around the 3/4 mile mark you’ll reach a split in the trail. Go right and follow a few switchbacks downhill until you reach a bridge that you cross and takes you to an old slide area. The slide area ends at Wahclella Falls. This hike is a lollipop trail so continue the loop at the falls and it will take you back to the split in the trail where you will follow the trail back the way you came in.

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This is a popular year-round hike but we would definitely say it is much busier in the spring. The waterfall seems to stay very full all year which is great. Spring time is great for this trail with all the nice bright greens and sunshine!

Distance: 2 miles

Elevation: 300 feet

Difficulty: Easy

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: Yes but they are Porta-potties.

Parking Fee: Yes a $5 NW Forest Pass

Seasons: All

Popular: Yes, especailly on nice days!

Overall: Great spring weekend hike. Lots to see on this trail!

Wahclella Falls (Winter)

This was our first hike of 2014.

Directions: Drive I-84 East to exit 40. Take a right at the stop sign and continue right where the road splits.

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This hike starts out on an old access road, where you’ll pass a dam used by the fish hatchery. Not too far past the dam you’ll cross a bridge that passes right in front of Munra Falls. The trail follows Tanner Creek and a short distance after the waterfall and starts to climb. The trail is pretty rocky and parts have stairs built into it.

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You’ll come to a fork in the trail, both options take you to the same place, we decided to go right. You switchback downhill and cross a bridge that takes you to a slide area. Just past the slide area you will see Wahclella Falls. Continue the loop and head back the way you came in.

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Distance: 2 miles

Elevation: 300 feet

Difficulty: Easy

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages

Bathrooms: Yes

Parking Fee: $5 NW Forest Pass

Seasons: All

Popular: Yes

Overall: One of the easier hikes in the Gorge!