Friday, December 14, 2012

Wonderful Waterfalls, Columbia River Gorge -- Thurs., Dec. 13

I started out the day getting up on the wrong side of the bed. Grumpy. Don't know why.

Mr. Bob was up early to go walking with Marissa. They walked for two hours across some bridges in downtown Portland and along the Springwater Corridor.

When Bob returned back to Mom's house, he was super cheerful and raring to go to the Columbia River Gorge to see waterfalls. He practically had to drag me out there.

Long story short, nature worked it's magic and before long, I was happily snapping photos and enjoying the majestic waterfalls. Our first stop was Bridal Veil Falls State Scenic Area where we hiked 2/3 mile roundtrip.

"Gorge"ous late afternoon.
Trail to Bridal Veil Falls viewpoint.
Bob at viewpoint.
Stairs, of course, on waterfall trails.

Bridal Veil Falls

More of the trail.
Below the falls.
We love the drive on the Columbia River Scenic Highway!

Next waterfall we stopped at was Wahkeena Falls. We did not hike up to the bridge as we were getting pretty chilled. (Temperatures in the mid-40s.)

Wahkeena Falls

And then the granddaddy of the the Columbia River Gorge waterfalls--Multnomah Falls. Spectacular. Pretty at any time of year, but especially so in winter and spring. One year we went in the middle of winter after a particularly severe cold snap. That year there were "glaciers" at the bottom of both the upper and lower falls. The ice was a gorgeous aqua color. In fact, the bowl at the bottom of Lower Falls was completely filled with ice.

Multnomah Falls and Lodge.

Trails in the Multnomah Falls area.
Our beloved Multnomah Falls.

Multnomah Falls Lodge and Restaurant.
Oneonta Gorge, our next stop, is a favorite haunt on a hot summer day. The gorge stays cool even on the warmest days. You can hike up the bed of the gorge, wading in the cold water, all the way to Punchbowl Falls. Some climbing over boulders and logjams is required. Oneonta Gorge is also a plant microcosm.

Special botanical area.

Columbia lewisia.
Oregon bolandra
Oregon sullivantia
Oneonta Gorge
Stairs to enter Oneonta Gorge currently end in a stream.
Shortly after Oneonta Gorge, is powerful Horsetail Falls. It pounds into the pool at the bottom of the falls.

Horsetail Falls
Bottom of Horsetail Falls.
The snow level in the Cascades is getting lower.

Driving back toward Troutdale on I-84, we also saw this ephemeral (temporary) waterfall.

That ended our Columbia River Gorge afternoon. We then headed to Troutdale to spend time with our good friends, Claude and Penny, owners of Marco Polo Designs jewelry. I will dedicate a separate blog to our visit.

Travel Bug out.

1 comment:

  1. More beautiful sights and great pictures. Really enjoyed them.


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