Our hiking trip assembles early morning of Day 1 in Portland and we’ll van shuttle the short distance through the western portal of the Gorge. We’re headed to Beacon Rock State Park, named for the massive rock promontory identified by Lewis and Clark as they passed along this section of the river as winter approached in 1805. We’ll hike the Hamilton Mountain Trail, an eight-mile loop that includes a visit to stunning Rodney and Hardy Falls before cresting Hamilton’s summit for its breathtaking views of Mt. Hood, Mt. Adams and Table Rock. We’ll then head to Cascade Locks for our first of three evenings at the Columbia River Inn.
On Day 2, we’ll set out hiking along Eagle Creek, which follows Eagle Creek itself through a deep canyon, with the waterfalls cascading down the cliffs to the creek below. The trail begins near the creek level and steadily rises, following a ledge along the cliff, past numerous waterfalls, moss carpeted creeks and sub-alpine lakes on our trip up the valley.
We dedicate Day 3 to the falls of the Columbia Gorge. We have the option to hike to Latourell, Wahkeena, Horsetail and magnificent 620 foot Multnomah Falls (7 miles).
On Day 4, it’s off to Dog Mountain and what well may be the Gorge’s premier hike. Without a doubt, Dog Mountain is a challenge with a 2,900 foot ascent (in 3 miles), in the context of a 7 mile loop. But the trail’s spectacular wildflower display and the incredible views of the Gorge are well worth the effort. This is a highlight of the Columbia River Gorge Hiking Tour.
From Dog Mountain, we’ll shuttle across the river to the slopes of Mt. Hood, where we’ll spend our final two overnights at the grand, historic Timberline Lodge. We present this portion of our trip in partnership with Mt. Hood National Forest.
On Day 5, we’ll climb to the summit of Tom, Dick and Harry Mountain, passing Mirror Lake, in the shadow of Mt. Hood’s southwestern flank through an unbelievable rhododendron forest (7 miles). Upon our return to Timberline Lodge guests can choose to relax or explore the facilities including a ride up the chair lift to the ski mountain, a hike on the Pacific Crest Trail to Zig Zag Canyon (6 miles) or a hike to Trillium Lake. Then enjoy a lovely meal in the Cascade Dining room before off to bed.
Following our final evening at Timberline on Day 6, we’ll visit beautiful Tamanawas Falls, named by Native American inhabitants of the region who regarded this 100 foot curtain as a “friendly guardian spirit” protecting Mt. Hood’s eastern flank (5 miles). Following lunch, we’ll return to Portland where our Columbia River Gorge Hiking Tour concludes.