MULTNOMAH FALLS LOOP
The most popular and iconic hike in the Columbia River Gorge begins at Oregon’s tallest waterfall, passes another waterfall almost as impressive and continues through lush forest on a loop of five miles.
The 620-foot Multnomah Falls used to be the state’s most popular tourist attraction until it was surpassed, in a thoroughly depressing moment, by Spirit Mountain Casino in 1998.
Even so, expect plenty of company at the beginning of this hike, which starts at the Multnomah Falls Trailhead and historic lodge (which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner).
The paved trail crosses a few scenic bridges showcasing Multnomah before climbing to an overlook at the top of the falls. The loop continues on Larch Mountain Trail and Wahkeena Falls Trail, showcasing a moss-covered 242-foot falls.
The loop ends by dropping down to the Columbia River Historic Highway and following a footpath back to Multnomah Falls Trailhead. The loop is five miles total and climbs 1,600 feet.
Directions: Follow I-84 east from Portland approximately 25 miles. Take exit 31 (on the left side of the highway) into the Multnomah Falls parking area. The exit is well-marked and easy to find.
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