Hike to Wiesendanger Falls

Rate this Adventure 2.8 miles 950 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Jonathan Faris

This is a great hike for someone wanting to skip past the crowds gawking at Multnomah Falls from Benson Bridge and see several beautiful waterfalls without spending another few hours ascending Larch Mountain.

You can get on the trail in about 45 minutes from Portland and 35 minutes from Hood River via I-84.

Once you get out of your car in the Multnomah Falls parking lot, head over to the historic Multnomah Falls Lodge. This is a neat place to check out after your hike. Then, follow the crowds to the main Multnomah Falls viewing area. If the crowds aren't too bad, you could linger here and take in the view, but your ultimate goal lies ahead! 

Take a right on the paved path to make your way up to Benson Bridge (0.2 miles in), which affords greater photography opportunities than the lower viewpoint (however, you have to contend with the spray from the falls!). Continue on, and you will reach a small gate that signals your entry onto the Larch Mountain trail #441. This is the trail you will use to access Dutchman Falls, Wiesendanger Falls, Ecola Falls, and Larch Mountain, if you are feeling up to it.

You will encounter 11 switchbacks (9 uphill, 2 downhill) on a paved path, which will take you to a junction with a trail coming in from the right. This short trail leads to a viewpoint atop Multnomah Falls; be sure to check it out on the way back.

Continue to the left on the Larch Mountain Trail and hike along Multnomah Creek. There are some photography opportunities along here, but be careful accessing those spots. This area is still recovering from the 2017 Eagle Creek Fire, so the terrain can be fragile and sketchy.

After about a quarter mile, you will reach Dutchman Falls. Take a break here and snap a couple photos. Then, after you pass under a basalt overhang and another quarter mile or so, you will reach Wiesendanger Falls. Accessing the base of the falls can be hazardous, especially in the winter when it is slippery and muddy. So make sure you stay on the trail and obey all warning signs and exercise caution and LNT principles. 

From here, you can either head back the way you came, or head another quarter mile down the trail to a junction with the Wahkeena Trail #420, which is worth your time if you are hungry for more waterfalls! If you had an early start and want a great workout, forge on towards Larch Mountain, which will add another 10 miles roundtrip to your day.

If there is still time to kill when you get back to your car, head over to Hood River for some great food and brews!

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Tags

Photography
Hiking
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Forest
River
Scenic
Waterfall

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