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Elevation Gain
?
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
3.80 mi (6.12 km)
Warming hut
No
Please respect the outdoors and leave no trace. One tip how to dispose of waste properly: Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products. For more information, visit https://lnt.org/learn/7-principles

See the wintry side of this magnificent waterfall on Mount Hood's eastern side with a relatively easy snowshoe hike through old-growth forests. While popular and oftentimes crowded during the summer, this falls sees only moderate activity during the middle of winter, partly because of the limited roadside parking. With only a gradual incline throughout, you’ll enjoy a short stroll through Douglas fir, mountain hemlock and cedar. You’ll also follow and cross (by bridge) Cold Spring Creek, which presents breathtaking winter scenery.

If you plan on getting near the falls, make sure to bring water resistant clothing, as the 150-foot-tall by 40-foot-wide Tamanawas emits mist throughout most seasons (which can freeze on camera lenses during the winter). It’s also wise to be cognizant of potential falling ice nearer the falls. Many of the icicles during winter can be several meters long. If you’re looking to avoid the slow slog of traffic up to Mount Hood from Portland, a good alternative would be to access these falls via Highway 35 through Hood River.

Recommended Gear

Before you head out on your next Mount Hood adventure, make sure you have the right gear! 

Here's a list of our go-to snowshoeing essentials to get you started:

Snowshoes: MSR Lightning Ascent Snowshoe

Men's and Women's • $229.95 • Cushioned, Made in USA, Ultralight, 98.8 oz

Jacket/Shell: Arc'teryx Zeta AR Jacket

Men's and Women's • $475.00 • Waterproof, Adjustable Drawcord Hem, Pit Zips, GORE-TEX

Pack: Mammut Nirvana Pro Pack 

$189.95 • 35L, Carry-On Size, Hip Belt, Ice Axe / Pole Loops, Hydration Compatible

Insulating Layer: Moosejaw Dequindre Down Jacket

Men's and Women's • $134.25 • Water-resistant, Insulated, Adjustable Drawcord Hem

Poles: Black Diamond Traverse Pole 

$79.95 • Aluminum, Adjustable with Lever Lock System, 21 oz.

Gloves: The North Face GORE-TEX Gloves

Men's Powdercloud • $181.61 • Waterproof, Adjustable, Insulated, GORE-TEX

Boots: Vasque Snowblime UltraDry Boot

Men's and Women's • $149.95 • Waterproof, Cushioned, Insulated

Gaiters: Outdoor Research Verglas Gaiter 

Men's and Women's • $64.95 • Waterproof, Breathable, Lightweight, Abrasion-resistant

 

If you are snowshoeing into avalanche terrain, you should be prepared, equipped and educated on how to use avalanche rescue and snow safety gear - including but not limited to an avalanche beacon/transceiver, probe, and shovel.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

NW Forest Pass

Pros

Fantastic winter falls. Great beginner snowshoeing. Photographic opportunities. Old-growth forest.

Cons

Limited parking. Minimal snowpack in early season. Trails are sometimes icy.

Pets allowed

Yes

Trailhead Elevation

3,020.00 ft (920.50 m)

Net Elevation Gain

500.00 ft (152.40 m)

Address

OR-35
Mt Hood, OR 97041
United States

Features

Old-growth forest
Waterfalls

Typically multi-day

No

Groomed trail

No

Location

Field Guide + Map

Nearby Adventures

Oregon, Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area
Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area, Oregon
Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area, Oregon

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Oregon, Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area
Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area, Oregon
Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area, Oregon

Comments

01.12.19
The light snow pack resulted in a very icy trail. My snowshoes were overkill. Most people had traction devices on their boots, which was the right equipment to have. Many people brought their dogs making it entertaining to greet each group on the way. It was a fun hike with a number of spots along the stream to get good photos of the flowing water.
01.21.18
Gorgeous falls and an amazing hike. Trail did not have too much snow at the trail head, but with a 500 foot elevation gain it became snow packed and icy in spots after a mile in. Crampons are a better option than snowshoes. After a day of hikers on the trail it became super icy on the way back to the car. We chose to slide down the trail on our butts in several places. Super fun day, our 6 year thought it was the best hike ever.
02.26.17
Enjoying a nice walk to the falls this weekend. There were a few icy patches along the trail. As you near the falls take caution.
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