Melinda and I got out last weekend 1/16 and 1/18 avoiding the massive downpour that happened on Saturday. Friday the 16th turned out to be a great afternoon. The clouds parted by the time I was done with work so off to the gorge to explore a possible waterfall that I noticed while looking over Google Earth. This possible waterfall looked tall, really tall. So where could a really tall waterfall be hiding in the gorge you may ask?
How about right next one the most popular gorge trails...Angles Rest!
Melinda and I parked at the quickly filling parking lot for Angles Rest and headed out in the opposite direction of the other hikers.
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Just a short distance up the road there is an unnamed creek that flows down towards the Bridal Veil Post Office. This little creek always seems to be flowing even in the summer. Not sure what used to be on the lot here but this is what currently haunts this lot.
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I had ventured up this creek years ago but only to the old waterworks. I couldn't see anything else up the stream so I turned around there. The dam and pipes seemed a lot younger in age than most others in the gorge, not as cool either. The waterworks
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We made our way upstream and in no time we could see a waterfall through the trees. This fall is about 180ft tall and the amphitheater is massive. I believe Melinda said it is made up from the Troutdale Formation.
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Melinda looking up at the fall.
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I thought it was odd that I couldn't find any information of this fall especially given it's proximity to Palmer Mill Rd. It is only about 1500ft up from the road and the only reason it isn't visible is because of the trees. At one time this fall would have been clearly visible from the old highway....but over the years it has been forgotten. If anyone else has any information or history about this fall...please chime in and let us know. As for now...I am referring to this fall as Forgotten Falls.
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Originally we had planned on hiking the next day to chase down another waterfall. Torrential rains kept us on hold and gave us an excuse to put away the last of the Christmas stuff.
All rested and ready to go we headed out Sunday 1/18 towards the gorge again. Upper Starvation Creek Falls was on the radar for the day. The upper fall is located just over a mile upstream from the big Starvation Creek Falls. The plan was to hike the ridge trail up about a mile and drop down into the canyon and see the falls. I should have had a clue how this day was going as I passed this sign.
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The weather seemed to be cooperating and we got a few sun-breaks.
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We even got to see a rainbow while looking down at our car.
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This was the first time either one of us has been on Starvation Ridge. We were happy to take in the view.
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Up the ridge we went. Eventually we got to were I thought we needed to jump off-trail.....I was wrong!
After a very difficult descent to the creek I realized that I screwed up. This side cascade was about 1/3 of a mile downstream from where we wanted to be.
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I can't always be right...so since I am stubborn, we continued along the creek heading upstream instead of going back up to the trail. This was the most difficult canyon Melinda and I have made our way through in quite a while. Tons of blow-down and thick underbrush made our journey miserable.....and then it started to pour!
It was looking bleak and I told Melinda we should probably bag the trip and try again on another day...she said 5 more minutes. And just like that there was a clearing in the brush and the rain stopped and we could see a waterfall through the trees.
A good 60ft tall Upper Starvation Creek Falls
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But what was that over there?
An 80ft second fall!!!
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Two for one, I guess it was worth it.
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Really neat that we got here...another one to scratch off the list. After enjoying the falls and a late lunch we packed up and started to drag our soggy selves out of the canyon. I immediately spotted a game trail that went up, we were both in ecstatic! It climbed steeply but was a clear path...in fact we didn't have to climb over a single log on the way out.
By the time we got down off of the ridge we were pretty beat up and it was getting dark. Cabin Creek Falls was raging!
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It was too dark to go check on Warren Falls so we headed back to the car. After returning home I saw on Facebook that Warren Falls had been flowing that day.....doh! Oh well... that just gives us a reason to head out there next time it's pouring.