|Wahkeena Creek rumbling and tumbling below the bridge |
while water falls plunge above the bridge
|View up the Columbia River Gorge |
from short, side trail viewpoint
|Fairy Falls and rustic rest bench|
The Wahkeena Falls Trail is a good destination when you only have a couple hours of open schedule to get in a hike. Zigzagging up the Gorge’s wall on the Oregon side, the trail makes its way between two large, roundish rock outcroppings. Perhaps the most interesting part of the trail is high above the Columbia River, where canyon walls narrow to the point where only the creek and parallel trail can pass through. Near this point is yet more plunging water known as Fairy Falls.
Most beautiful. That is the meaning of “Wahkeena,” an Indian word used to name one of the numerous waterfalls on the Oregon side of the Columbia Gorge. From the trailhead’s parking lot, Wahkeena Creek crashes along its final journey to the Columbia River. A short distance up the trail is an old and ornate bridge crossing the creek just below the head of the falls.
The falls were originally known as Gordon Falls. In 1915, after the completion of the original highway, the falls were renamed to Wahkeena.
|A few of the numerous switchbacks along the Wahkeena Falls Trail|
|Trail and Wahkeena Creek wind their way through narrow canyon|