“A short, well-traveled trail leading to one of the most impressive Gorge waterfalls.”
— Brian Smith
Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Waterfall · Wildflowers
The lower falls are easily accessible to the whole family.
Wahclella Falls is one of the more spectacular waterfalls in the Gorge: a 350-foot two-tiered plunge with the final 60-foot section providing a powerful horsetail fall into an enormous splash pool. The trail winds past house-sized boulders left behind by a 1973 landslide. Watch for water ouzels bobbing and diving on the side of the stream, and for spawning salmon at the base of the falls during late fall.
The trail begins on an old, gated road alongside Tanner Creek. Pass a small intake dam for the Bonneville Fish Hatchery and continue into the narrowing canyon. A tributary stream creates a dramatic waterfall at the first bridge, and the trail forks after 0.7 mile. If you have small children it is advisable to stay on the lower trail and avoid the sheer-sided return loop.