One of the best low-elevation hikes in North America

Seven large waterfalls, many small falls, a historical trail, exploring a Wilderness area, wildflowers and sunshine – – – the Eagle Creek Trail was all that and more near the end of April. The Eagle Creek Canyon cuts a north-to-south slot through the 4,000 foot cliffs of the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge, about 39 air miles east of home. In the early 1900s, building the 13 miles of Trail took 13 years of labor and a tremendous amount of dynamite before reaching Wahtum Lake. Parts of the Trail are blasted out of the walls of sheer cliffs, including a section behind Tunnel Falls. It is probably the most spectacular low-elevation trail I have ever hiked.

The hanging wildflower gardens along the trail were in their prime with deep blue larkspur, violet shooting stars, chocolate lilies, yellow glacier lilies and white Solomon plumes. All in all, the hike was 12.3 miles in length with 1,400 feet of elevation gain.

As an aside, I was using an older DSLR with a kit lens. (My usual Nikon was in the shop getting cleaned.) Some of the close-up shots turned out okay, but the distance shots are pretty disappointing. A good sharp telephoto lens would have made all the difference.

Slug eating a Glacier Lily



Hanging wildflower garden along the trail

Chocolate Lily

Cable Handrails are useful

Loowit Falls

Fairy Bells (wild lilies)

Categories: Columbia River Gorge HikesTags: , , , , , , ,

1 comment

  1. I would love to go on this hike.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: