Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

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koriwallace
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Joined: May 22nd, 2017, 10:04 am

Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by koriwallace » February 26th, 2018, 2:41 pm

Friday, 2/23/18, I hiked Panther Creek Falls (which I will also post a trip report for) and Falls Creek Falls in the Gifford-Pinchot National Forest. They are AMAZING in the winter. I almost felt like I was on another planet. Absolutely stunning. This hike is 8.6 miles in the winter as the road to the trailhead is closed seasonally for elk protection, adding an additional 2 miles each direction. It was a moderately difficult hike due to ice and distance. We wore Yaktrax, which we found to be very helpful but we saw a 3 or 4 other groups of hikers and most just wore regular hiking boots/shoes. It was cold and snowing (30ish) but we were properly bundled up so we were just fine. I would definitely recommend this hike in the winter. We also saw some fun animal tracks in the snow - rabbit, I think. Too many amazing photos to upload here so I've included just a couple of my favorites.
Attachments
Road to Falls Creek Falls 20180223.jpg
Hiking the road to Falls Creek Falls trailhead due to seasonal road closure to motorized traffic 2.23.18
Falls Creek Falls 20180223.jpg
Falls Creek Falls 2.23.18

neilsonw
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Re: Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by neilsonw » February 26th, 2018, 4:23 pm

Wow! Looks fantastic in the winter. Thanks for sharing.

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markesc
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Re: Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by markesc » March 3rd, 2018, 10:52 pm

Nice work!! :mrgreen:

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drm
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Re: Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by drm » March 4th, 2018, 8:46 am

I went yesterday. Started in snowshoes but switched to spikes and used them for the day, though they were not required. Trail was snow packed the entire way in. Many people going in - this seems to be getting a lot more popular in winter. I had the viewing area below to myself when I got there but over a half dozen arrived while I was there and many more coming as I headed out.
fcf.jpg
Falls Creek Falls

squidvicious
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Re: Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by squidvicious » March 4th, 2018, 9:58 am

drm wrote:Started in snowshoes but switched to spikes and used them for the day, though they were not required. Trail was snow packed the entire way in.
Thanks for the additional detail. I've been thinking for a while of giving it a go, but wondered about the conditions. Glad to hear it's well-packed.

I think part of the reason for the increased popularity is this trail is consistently called out on the lists of "Places to go while the gorge is off-limits." Though I've noticed they never mention the special considerations of doing it in winter.

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drm
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Re: Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by drm » March 7th, 2018, 7:51 am

Yeah, one couple was stopped at the summer trailhead and told me they weren't expecting snow. I said not expecting snow in February? (It was March but I guess my head hadn't caught up). Most people were in sneakers or other light shoes.

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BaileyBoy
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Re: Amazing Falls Creek Falls Winter Hike

Post by BaileyBoy » March 8th, 2018, 4:56 pm

Thanks for the trail update but I'm looking to take my dog in and wondered if it's iced up at all as you near the falls along the cliff edges? As I recall there are a few areas of the trail that slope towards the creek and I don't want to bring him in if it may be too risky.

Thanks

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