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Oneonta Gorge

Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

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Oneonta Gorge
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  • Oneonta Gorge: Bigleaf maples (Acer macrophyllum) along Oneonta Gorge near the Historic Columbia River Highway.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge: View toward the log jam.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge: View toward the log jam.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge: View on top of the log jam.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge: Looking south.- Oneonta Gorge
  • View looking up from Oneonta Gorge.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge: Maidenhair fern (Adiantum pedatum).- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge: Lower Oneonta Falls.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
  • Oneonta Gorge in Winter.- Oneonta Gorge
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Unique, narrow chasm.
Cons: 
Only accessible in late summer when water levels are low. Hazardous log jam.
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Alerts: 
September, 2017: The rapidly expanding Eagle Creek and Indian Creek fires have forced closures throughout large areas of the Columbia River Gorge. Updated information can be found in the following links: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5584/ and https://gorgefriends.org/hike-the-gorge/trail-alerts.html
Region:
Columbia River Gorge, OR
Congestion: 
Moderate
Preferable Season(s):
Summer, Fall
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
Not Required
Total Distance: 
1.00 mi (1.61 km)
Trailhead Elev.: 
120 ft (37 m)
Net Elev. Gain: 
20 ft (6 m)
Trail Uses:
Hiking
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Dogs allowed: 
No
Current Local Weather:
Powered by Dark Sky

Today

Mostly cloudy until afternoon.
66°F
45°

Tue

Clear throughout the day.
66°F
46°

Wed

Mostly cloudy throughout the day.
63°F
42°

Thu

Partly cloudy in the morning.
70°F
51°

Fri

Clear throughout the day.
68°F
47°

Sat

Clear throughout the day.
70°F
46°

Sun

Partly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
68°F
49°
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Contributor

The Columbia River Gorge is home to countless view points, hikes and recreational opportunities that make it one of the most spectacular places in the Pacific Northwest. Even in this incredible environment, the Oneonta Gorge stands out as a unique and exceptional area.

 

The hike up this narrow basalt chasm begins at the Historical Columbia River Highway and ends only a half-mile upstream at Lower Oneonta Falls. Many might consider the waterfall to be the highlight of the trip, and it is beautiful, but what sets Oneonta apart is the journey there.  The hike upstream includes some navigation over and around river rocks, with shallow splashing here and there, and potentially a chilly but refreshing crossing through some waist-deep water. In other words, be ready to get wet!

 

August and September are perfect months to visit – water temperatures are a bit higher and the creek's levels are a bit lower.  Before nature will allow you to pass into this special realm, however, you will have to cross over an enormous pile-up of fallen trees and debris simply known as the log jam.  Venturing over the log jam is certainly not for everyone, and many have suffered serious injury and even drowned in their attempts to climb over this often extremely slippery hazard.  Take it slow and step carefully regardless of when you visit.

 

A slow approach also gives you time to appreciate the ferns, mosses and lichens that cling to the gorge walls.  Many of these plants grow only in the Columbia River Gorge. To protect these plants and the other unique aquatic plants that grow here, the Forest Service has designated the Oneonta Gorge a botanical area. Explore, be safe and enjoy!

 

Caution:  Due to cold water, high water levels and slippery hazards, passage into Oneonta Gorge is not advised from November through July.

 

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(37 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(189 within a 30 mile radius)

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