Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
600.00 ft (182.88 m)
Trail type
2.00 mi (3.22 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The often overlooked Elowah Falls rush just off of the Historic Columbia River Highway.  Tucked away in a giant amphitheater of basalt, Elowah Falls drops cascading water an impressive 280 feet from McCord Creek.  As you make your way through the forest, be sure to avoid the ubiquitous poison oak. Also note that trail intersection signs were missing the directional indications for Elowah Falls, so kind hikers have added the appropriate information. The hike to Upper Elowah Falls is impressive, with a single-track trail that is cut high into the basalt cliff.  Not only does this trail provide excellent views of Hamilton Mountain and Table Mountain across the Columbia River, it is also home to a plethora of unique flora.  Look for the white shooting star, poison delphinium, mountainbells, broadleaf stonecrop, and the endemic flower, Barrett’s penstemon.  This is a hike you’ll be sure to remember!

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Not Required


Two waterfalls. Trail along a cliff's edge. Endemic wildflower species.



Trailhead Elevation

130.00 ft (39.62 m)


Big vistas
Old-growth forest


Nearby Adventures


Peaceful, easy hike. One trail splits into two. Left for Elowah falls, up and right for the Upper McCord Creek falls. Best to see in the spring after the rains of winter and before the summer crowds.
We were lucky with very few people on the trail. It's a beautiful hike with a good bit of uphill (the few people we bumped into were winded and wondering "how much further?"). It was humid the day we went, but mostly shaded with lots of flowers and ripe berries to gawk at. The falls was magnificent! Such a great short hike. Glad I found this here on Outdoor Project - and glad we went.
The lower Elowah Falls portion was closed due to a wash out but the rest was accessible and beautiful, with great views of the upper falls and the gorge.
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