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Friday, March 29, 2013

January 12, 2013

Trip Report from Timothy:

In the pursuit of visiting 365 waterfalls this year I will be revisiting most of the waterfalls I saw last year. So to make things more interesting for the ones I did last year I am trying to get better pictures of those I have already been to. Today's goal was to get to the bottom of Stasel Falls which is located on Stout Creek about 20 miles SE of Salem. We parked at the trail head to Shellburg Falls on Fern Ridge Road, it was nice and frosty out. The trail to Shellburg Falls is a gravel road through private property for 1 1/4miles so this part of the hike was shared with mountain bikers and cows. Yes....cows. 

It was pretty cold out and we saw our share of ice.

About a 1/4 mile past Shellburg Creek the road bends to the north but there is an old logging road that continues east. Despite not being on the hiking map for this area this old logging road sees lots of boot traffic. The top of Stasel Falls is easily reached about a 1/4 mile down this road.

Following Brian Swan's suggestion from his 
NW Waterfall Survey we broke off of the logging road after a hundred feet and made our way down to the creek.

The bushwhack was pretty brutal but it was really the only safe way to get to the bottom of the falls. The cliffs along the creek were pretty steep all the way to the falls.

I kept turning around thinking I was going to have to wait for my partner to catch up to me but she was on my heels the whole time. She was just as anxious to see Stasel Falls from the bottom as I was. It was totally worth the bushwhack. 

There is a pool between the two tiers and some of the water flows behind the large rock column on the right of the top tier. That water makes the two lower falls on the right which you can't see from the top. Stasel Falls are definitely more impressive from the bottom.
# 23  Stasel Falls  (bushwhack ~ difficult)
I decided to climb the cliff out on the side of the waterfall. You could probably get down this way but I wouldn't recommend it without a rope, it's pretty steep. I grabbed another picture on the way up.
Lots of ice.

Heading back we headed up to see Shellburg Falls. Only a 1/4 mile off the road.

This was my first time up here in the winter. Definitely looks better with a higher water flow. The trail goes behind the waterfall and up some neat stairs on the other side of the creek. There is a campground above the waterfall that the trail leads to about a 1/2 mile up. The road to it doesn't open until June 1, I think.
# 24  Shellburg Falls  (trail ~ moderate access)
Last waterfall of the day...Lower Shellburg Falls. We walked by it twice already but we didn't climb down to the bottom until the end. It was an easy climb in comparison to what we did earlier in the day. Really wondering why I never went down for this picture before.
# 25  Lower Shellburg Falls  (bushwhack ~ moderate access)
Heading back to the car. What a great day for hike. 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

January 11, 2013

Sometimes we all need an easy day.  This was one of them for my partner and I.  We took a thirty minute car ride on out to the Columbia River Gorge.  First off we got a shot of Shady Creek Falls which is often overlooked because it sits next to Multnomah Falls.  
# 19  Shady Creek Falls  (road side ~ easy access)
Grab the usual picture that taken; Multnomah Falls.  Despite the tourist spot Multnomah Falls is unique and pretty.  
# 10  Multnomah Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
Continuing on along we grabbed a couple of others before heading home.  Was a nice easy day, just breathing the fresh air and taking a break from day-to-day problems.  Likely as not we'll visit these falls in future encounters, but all waterfalls vary on the flow and season.  
# 21  Wahkeena Falls  (road side ~ easy access)
Sadly, I have to admit I did have to photoshop Sheppards Dell Falls images together to get the full view, but I think it turned out ok.  
# 22  Sheppards Dell Falls (road side ~ easy access)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

January 5, 2013

One of our favorite trips is to find a reason to go down to Tillamook on the Oregon coast.  I love anything Tillamook.  Needless to say when we go down that way for waterfalls we find ourselves at the factory eating cheese and getting ice cream.  Yum... can't wait to find another reason to go down there.

We didn't quite get off on the right foot because Stafford Falls is best seen from the other side of the river.
# 10  Stafford Falls (road side ~ easy access)
Which in January is way too cold for my tastes.  Although we do plan to go back, to which I hope Tillamook will be a feasible stop.  Unfortunately this trip the sides of the road were caked in snow.  Which also limited out ability to do other falls.  Yet snow shots do pose for some nice views in certain occasions.

Next up we drove up to Fern Rock Falls.  There is a big turnout, which was covered in snow, but we still managed to find a good enough place to park.
# 11  Fern Rock Falls  (road side ~ easy access)

Down the highway Wilson Falls was our next waterfall.  Last year we had hiked the trail all the way to the fall.  This year we discovered a much better view was from the base of the fall.  It's a little off-trail from a powerline road, but was well worth it.
# 12  Wilson Falls  (bushwhack ~ easy access)
The hiking trail is pretty, but takes a while.  In the end the trail puts you in the middle of the fall, which doesn't provide a good shot.  We were both happier for this angle.

Practically right around the corner up the road were the next couple of waterfalls we got.
# 13  Lower Bridge Creek Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
# 14  Bridge Creek Falls  (trail ~ easy access)

We got back to the car and warmed up a bit before reaching Munson Creek Falls.  This was the first year that we managed to get a good shot of the falls, that is not having the sun blasting out some part of the fall.
# 15  Munson Creek Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
Next up we got cheesy.  That is we worked our way over to the Tillamook factory.  Got plenty of free delicious cheese samples and I took forever trying to decide what ice cream scoops to get.  Tillamook definitely has my love.
Tillamook Factory
The next two waterfalls are quite neat.  I say this because they dump right onto the beach.  Blumenthal Falls is a little bit of a hike to get to, but worth it.  Often on the trail you'll see surfers as it's a favored spot for that. 
# 16  Blumenthal Falls  (trail ~ moderate access) 
Whereas with Hug Point Falls isn't as visible.  If you go to the parking lot for Hug Point, just down the stairs there is a rock ridge (Hug Point) off to the right.  Hug Point Falls is just around the corner from that rock ridge.  Which I think is pretty neat, but sad because when the tide is high getting to the falls can get very... tricky.  We got there and the tide was a little bit high, however we still accomplished a few good shots.
# 17  Hug Point Falls  (around rock ridge ~ easy access)
Finishing the day off we managed to barely squeeze in Fishhawk Falls.  The sun was setting and the drive took a bit, yet we were determined to get the shot.  We got a little distracted by a field of elk.  Although we got what we came for.

# 18  Fishhawk Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
herd of elk

Monday, March 25, 2013

January 3, 2013

Heading up to Washington, Timothy and I found our way over to Lucia Falls Park.  A nice easy hike on a sunny yet cold winter day.
# 5  Lucia Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
Over at Moultan Falls Park there were sheets of snow and ice.  The part that made it pretty chilly was having to kneel of frosted rocks to get the shot of Moultan Falls.
# 6  Moultan Falls  (kindof trail - easy access)
Just before we grabbed that picture, we did manage to see a bald eagle resting on a branch up river.  Unfortunately he took off before we could get a better picture.
bald eagle
On the next trail the sun was poking out a bit more.  We stumbled across an interesting find; a wagon wheel that a tree had grown up through.

Yacolt Falls was a bit of a slipper slope to get down to since the trail was coated in ice.  Thankfully there is a handrail which made traversing it possible.  Was a nice view, even though the sun was blasting out part of the fall.
# 7  Yacolt Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
Hopping back in the car we headed off to the last trail to Sunset Falls.  I preferred the lower shot I had last year, but with the cold and lowering sun we got the shot from up top.  Not to mention the water level was a bit higher as well.
# 8  Sunset Falls  (trail ~ easy access)
The road down to the last waterfall had icicles along the roadside and some construction workers clearing out for road drainage.

Apparently the closed road down to the falls is a favored spot of some poachers.  There were quite a few deer carcasses laying around.

We went a short distance down the old road before turning off at the bridge.  The waterfall is right there at the bridge, but the best shot is almost always from the bottom, so down we went.  I got pretty scared going down a short chute, mainly because my worn shoes were showing their age and not gripping worth a damn.  Plus my hands were quite cold, therefore not gripping to well either.  Down at the bottom though we did see a good view of the falls.  There was a lot of ice covering just about everything.
# 9  Big Tree Creek Falls  (bushwhack ~ moderate access)
Also down river we saw something a bit unusual.  For a while I was certain it was a dead body because the red looked like a motorcycle helmet cover and the yellow looked like a reflective jacket, but we concluded that it was probably just some garbage.

With all the waterfalls done for the day we headed out.  A ways down the road I noticed a waterfall through the trees just past this utility box.  Sadly I couldn't get a better view of the waterfall.  The falls isn't listed in any information I have (my main sources being Northwest Waterfall Survey and World Wide Waterfall Database), so will have to check it out on another day.

January 1, 2013

Some of these posts are going to be clips from Portland Hikers forum board.  My partner and I try to post trip reports on there on occasion   Sadly, he has me quite beat in that department.  This next part is a trip report Timothy did from there.  :)

Timothy:'s the new year so time to start a new list of waterfalls for the year. :) I decided to start the year off with one I hadn't seen before. Stout Creek is SE from Silver Falls State Park about twenty miles east of Salem. Just a little over an hour drive from Portland. I have been up in this area a few times before so I knew winter is the best time to go bushwhacking and that the falls down there look nice with a higher flow. This was my first time looking for Stout Creek Falls. I knew they were in the area but wasn't sure how to get to them. The old logging road that leads there usually has someone set up there target shooting so if you head down this way I'd make this the first stop. The old logging road is about half a mile past where the road crosses over Stout Creek on the right side.

Heading down the road a short ways the road seems to end but if you look kind of SE you can see where an old logging road is pretty overgrown. If you keep heading east on that road you'll eventually come to a nice mossy clearing at the top of the falls.

We made our way down towards the river fairly easy. It was a little cold out though.

A nice high flow for Stout Creek Falls....not a bad looking waterfall.
# 1 Stout Creek Falls (bushwhack ~ moderate access)

After making our way back to the car we drove back down the road to where it crosses the creek. There is a closed road just north of this crossing where there is a gate. We parked there and headed up the road only a couple of hundred feet before we could clearly hear Horseshoe Falls. There are steep cliffs on the north side of the creek near the fall so to get to the bottom we headed toward the junction of Stout Creek and Ayers Creek. This tall dead tree is easily seen from the road, head toward it and you can find a safe way down. Looking back at the tree on our way down.

Horseshoe Falls from the bottom. Nice little waterfall.
# 2 Horseshoe Falls 
(bushwhack ~ moderate access)

For some reason after seeing this fungi I was craving bacon. :mrgreen:

From Horseshoe Falls we made our way downstream to where Stout Creek and Ayers Creek come together. Not the easiest of bushwhacking.

Ayers Creek Falls is only a couple hundred feet upstream from the junction. Clearly visible when you come around the bend.
# 3  Ayers Creek Falls

This was my first time to the base of these falls...I think it was worth it.
(bushwhack ~ moderate access)
 After making our way back to the road we had one more waterfall to see. We hiked up the road for about 1/2 mile around to the west side of the canyon so we could see Upper Ayers Creek Falls. We were pretty beat from all the bushwhacking so we didn't go all the way to the base of it. We got a few good shots from halfway down the hill. These falls are pretty skimpy later in the summer, not much to see.
# 4  Upper Ayers Creek Falls (bushwhack ~ moderate access)

Heading back just in time.