Exploring Oregon: The Multnomah Falls Showing Their True Height

The stunning Multnomah Falls
The stunning Multnomah Falls

Situated some short 45 minutes outside of Portland you can find a true natural wonder: The largest waterfalls in Oregon state and the second largest waterfalls of the entire country! The Multnomah Falls are two waterfalls formed in between the Colombia River Gorge, where they plummet from a total height of 620 feet down into the river. The larger of the two waterfalls is 542 feet tall whereas the smaller one is 69 feet tall. A bridge runs across both at one point and perhaps you’ve seen this bridge in movies or on popular pictures. It surely is an amazing sight, especially up close and in person.

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On our second day in Portland we rented a car and made the drive out east. I believe the true gems of the Pacific Northwest are the landscapes and the impressive nature you can pretty much find anywhere outside of the larger cities and towns.

Close to the waterfalls you can buy some deliciously baked goods and other snacks. They are not as overpriced as one would think (at least not for NYC standards) and I made sure to get a few snacks for on the way.

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The hike up to the falls is fairly short. There is a spot where most visitors stop and get a typical tourist picture. You can also see the bridge and the two falls from here.

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Then a path leads up to the actual bridge, which is just a short walk over. Most people don’t really go further than this but there are a fair amount that try to make it all the way up. From the bridge to the top of the waterfall it’s a good 45-minute-long hike (in good weather conditions, not when it’s raining, which it tends to do a lot in the PNW). The path which leads to the top was quite beautiful in early fall and reminded me much of the vegetation of the Northeast: Large green trees, moss-covered grounds, and colorful leaves.

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The path leads up some pretty steep slopes and there are markers along the way, which give a sense for direction and length to the top. I remember how in the beginning we felt we could be there in less than fifteen minutes but it quickly became apparent that the hike up was not as easy as assumed.

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Once we made it to the top, the view was totally worth all the struggle, though. We followed the small river, which eventually turned into the waterfall and we could see the bridge and tiny humans on it from afar as we looked down.

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Needless to say that the hike back down went faster than uphill.

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