Hidden hikes in the Columbia River Gorge
A good family-friendly hike, the Wahclella Falls trail on the Oregon side is only two miles round-trip and relatively flat. The gentle walk follows Tanner Creek, which flows through a shady canyon, and the trail crosses the stream on wooden bridges. Along the way you will pass Munra Falls, which slides down the face of a rock like a vertical waterslide. The Wahlclella Falls itself is a stunner: a roaring 65ft drop into a water-filled pool, partially enclosed by a moss- and fern-covered amphitheatre. If you look closely at the top of Wahlclella you can see the upper falls, another 50ft waterfall that is tucked back in a steep canyon. Once you reach the falls, the trail climbs up and turns back, creating a small loop that connects one-third of a mile down the trail.
The Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area is easily accessed from Portland via Highway 84. Several bridges across the Columbia River will take you to the Washington side. You can find detailed information at the website for Friends of the Columbia Gorge, where you can also book guided hikes, though these are all hikes you can take on your own.
Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly located Troutdale and Wahclella Falls in Washington. This has been fixed.