Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
1,700.00 ft (518.16 m)
Trail type
4.30 mi (6.92 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.

Once known as Gordon Falls, after the pioneer F.E. Gordon, the falls were renamed Wahkeena Falls by the Mazamas in 1915.  Wahkeena is a Yakima word that means "most beautiful," but in this case the falls are just the beginning of of this most beautiful hike.  A series of popular falls are accessible from the Historic Colombia River Highway, but tucked away above each of these falls are countless other falls that are equally spectacular and perhaps more enjoyable because you won't have to share them with the droves of tourists who stick closer to their cars.  When included with a trip to Multnomah Falls, you will encounter four of these lessor known cascades: Fairy Falls, Ecola Falls and Weisendanger, Upper Multnomah Falls and Duchman Falls.  Return to the Wahkeena Trailhead by making your way to the bottom of Multnomah Falls via the paved switchback trail.  Walk east for several hundred yards, passing the lodge to get to the lower trail that parallels the Historic Colombia River Highway for one-half a mile.

Camping is no longer permitted in the old campground below Wahkeena Trailhead, but there are numerous picnic areas with their own grills, restrooms, and a picnic shelter for inclement weather.


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Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Not Required


Six waterfalls. Numerous cascades. Wildflowers. Close to Portland.


Steep switchbacks above Wahkeena Falls. Heavily used area.

Trailhead Elevation

100.00 ft (30.48 m)


Big vistas
Old-growth forest

Typically multi-day



Nearby Lodging + Camping


Thanks for the heads up Keri! I've updated the map to show Perdition Trail as washed out, and the featured route now follows the trail that parallels the Historic Columbia River Highway.
While the description of the hike is correct, the 'return trail' marked in this map is dangerously inaccurate. This map actually has people following the closed Perdition Trail, a few hundred feet upslope, instead of taking the return trail. Perdition was closed 20 years ago due to major erosion. The attached map shows both trails so you can see the difference.
Lots of fun -- but tricky -- even in the winter rain! A word of warning, though, to anyone looking at this one as a winter hike -- there's a lot of snow, ice, and mud on the trail. We got up just past Fairy Falls and had to turn around; others coming down said they had been told the Multnomah side of the loop was treacherously icy. If you're going to do it, I recommend grippy shoes and hiking poles.
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