Our main objective on our trip to Oregon was to see some of this state’s amazing waterfalls. Just one hour outside of Portland, Oregon is the not so secret Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. You can take Interstate 84 to the popular Multnomah Falls, but if you do you’ll miss all the cool stops along the way.
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Oregon Waterfalls on the Historic Columbia River Highway
Troutdale, the Gateway to the Gorge, is a small town about 15 miles from Portland. This is where we started our waterfall chasing journey. There are shops lining the downtown and plenty of places to grab some food.
From Troutdale you can follow the Historic Columbia River Highway. In eight miles you will come to Portland Women’s Forum State Scenic Viewpoint on your left.
You can take a short detour on Larch Mountain Road to see five mountain views. Unfortunately, during our visit the road was closed. So we continued down to a short one-mile drive will take you to the Vista House viewpoint.
You can go inside of the Vista house, but not until 9:30 am.
At this point in the drive we were starting to wonder where are all these waterfalls? We were very close. In a little over two miles down the road through the moss covered forest you’ll arrive at Latourell Falls.
Latourell Falls has a small parking area. You can easily view the waterfall from here. However, it is well worth the short hike to hear the roar of the water.
The next waterfall is Shepperd’s Dell. Unfortunately, the trail was closed when we visited. However, you can still view the waterfall from the road.
Bridal Veil Falls
A few miles up the road is Bridal Veil Falls. We were so happy this trail was open. It is a short hike through a cool mossy forest to the waterfall.
Brisk hike down, cross a bridge and then hike up to the waterfall. There was no one on the path until we walked back up to the parking lot.
The Columbia Gorge area is like something out of a fairy tale or fantasy book. It is absolutely stunning. The next waterfall on this route is Wahkeena Falls. The trail was only open to the bridge when we visited.
The next waterfall, Multnomah Falls, is one of the most popular waterfalls in Oregon. Multnomah has very limited parking and this waterfall the busiest waterfall we visited on our trip. There is a gift shop and restaurant here.
Most of the trails were closed when we visited, however, the Benson Bridge was accessible. After visiting we continued towards Cascade Locks. We wanted to visit Oneonta Falls, but the trail was closed. The next waterfall we came to was Horsetail Falls.
You do not need to hike to see Horsetail Falls. The waterfall is just a few steps from the parking lot. You can hear the roar of the water from your car.
After Horsetail Falls you can visit Elowah Falls. Elowah falls were closed when we visited. So we continued towards Cascade Locks looking for a place to eat.
We stopped in Cascade Locks at the Cascade Locks Ale House to grab a Pizza of the Gods. It was quite good. They also have a nice outdoor eating area in the back. We ended our Oregon road trip and took the Interstate back to Portland.