The rain is here, so we better embrace it. What better way to embrace it than to go for a Columbia Gorge waterfall hike and follow it up with a pint on the way back to town. At about 5 miles long and only 700 feet of elevation gain it’s possible to finish this hike in about 2 1/2 hours.
Distance: 5 miles roundtrip
Time: 2 1/2 hours
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Season: Year round
Dog Friendly: Yes, there are a couple spots for them to wade/drink along the way and the trail is mostly packed dirt, a little rockier near Triple Falls, but nothing an experienced pup can’t handle
Pros: 4 waterfalls, beautiful forest, Oneonta Gorge and proximity to Portland
Cons: I can’t think of any
Permit: None needed
After finding parking at Horsetail Falls, follow the gravel trail .2 miles beyond an informational sign and keep right at the junction. After not too much further you’ll come across Ponytail Falls. The trail passes behind the falls, through a grotto, where moisture drips from the ceiling and a fine, cooling mist spray up from the falls….prepare to get damp.
There is a stunning, mossy weeping rock about a mile passed Ponytail falls and from here the trail continues on a bridge across Oneonta Gorge.
Shortly after crossing the bridge there is another junction, turn left and head up the hill about another mile to Triple Falls.
Triple Falls makes a great picnic stop and if you continue above the falls there are a couple of swimming holes great for a dip (if it’s warm and sunny).