Hike Distance: 7.3 miles Yearly Hike Distance: 500 miles
Elevation Gain: 308 feet Yearly Elevation Gain: 10000 feet
Our son was in town and the forecast was for rain. We headed out east of the Cascades to the Coyote Wall area to avoid that rain. It was so nice to be greeted by a partly cloudy sky and some stellar views!
We parked just off road near Rowland Lake, where the crowds are significantly reduced. We headed SW along the old highway past a small waterfall. Low water flow made the waterfall look like a heavily dripping wall, but it’s still beautiful. After photos we continued down the road and took a turn to ascend up the trail system toward Coyote Wall. The trail system in this area is narrow and somewhat rocky. The ascent is quick, and the views impress as you continue up the trail.
Much of the spring flowers are exhausted by now but there were plenty of what looked like blue bachelor buttons. I’m going to have to learn the names of these flowers. The grasses are now dried out and there tan color is stark next to the green bushes and trees. The Poison Oak was everywhere!!! It was also growing over the edges of the trail, and I felt like we were tight-roping to avoid it. I really like the look of Poison Oak but sure want nothing to do with it. The truth is, I’ve never touched the stuff and don’t know how susceptible I am to the toxin… and don’t want to know.
We ascended up the trail and connected with the main path that loops around from Coyote Wall all the way to upper Catherine Creek. We stopped at a viewpoint over Catherine Creek and stopped for photos and to eat and re-hydrate. I really love the views of the Columbia River when your high above it. It’s so peaceful up here and the expansive view is breathtaking. 🙂
We took the main path down to the old highway 14 road and then followed it back to the car. This is a more direct route but adds some distance to the hike. This also allowed us to make a small loop on the lower portion of the trail.
A fantastic day on the dry side of the Columbia River Gorge!