On a late December day with the promise of a little sunshine, I headed to the east side of the Columbia River Gorge. My goal was to explore the Catherine Creek area.
Like Coyote Wall, the area is a tilted basalt formation extending a few miles north of the Gorge, rising to around 2,300 feet above sea level.
To the north there is a pleasant trail that crosses a footbridge over Catherine Creek. Soon I reached an old corral below a high natural arch carved out of the basalt cliffs.
To the north, Catherine Creek cut a north-south deep canyon through the basalt. After reaching the top of the rimrock cliffs, I enjoyed the views to the east of the desert-like scenery.
Returning to the trailhead, I crossed the road and did a short loop on a paved path past a small waterfall on Catherine Creek.
The trek made for a wonderful early winter outting.