Oregon Road Trip: Multnomah Falls

by Chris on July 19, 2011

A stop at Multnomah Falls, Oregon’s most iconic – and photographed – waterfall

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

Where: Multnomah Falls, Oregon, located along the Columbia River Gorge. The falls were the main stop along our Oregon roadtrip along the Historic Columbia River Highway

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

When: July 3-4 – which turned out to be one of the worst days to visit the falls. The crowds and traffic were about as bad it gets (although we did enjoy the patriotic music being played by a visiting high school band from Utah).

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

Why:  In a state that boasts plentiful waterfalls, Multnomah Falls stands out as one of the most iconic – and photographed. At 620 feet in two sections, it’s also the tallest waterfall in Oregon, and the second tallest in the country.

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

Fun Fact:  The footbridge located between the upper and lower falls was built in 1914 by Simon Benson, a logging magnate who was one of the more enthusiastic developers of the Historic Columbia River Highway (the country’s first scenic bypass); He also bought Multnomah Falls and deeded it the city of Portland as a public park.

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

Highlights: The falls themselves are gorgeous, but if you’re taking the hour-long hike to the top, make sure you glance the other way for a view of the Columbia River Gorge.

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

Munchies? You can’t stay at the Multnomah Falls Lodge, but the restaurant serves up Northwest-inspired food in a gorgeous setting (but you’ll pay for the privilege). Or grab an ice cream at the snack bar. The lodge is open 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.

Multnomah Falls, Oregon

We wish we knew: That we were visiting Multnomah on one of the busiest days of the year. The backup started about 1/4 mile away and it took us at least 45 minutes to reach the parking lot. We both agreed that the time to go would be in the morning, before the swarms began.

Details: It’s more scenic to take the Historic Columbia River Highway, also known as Historic US 30, to Multnomah. But if you’re in a hurry, Multnomah Falls is also easily accessible from I-84.

| Chris Gray Faust is a veteran journalist, travel expert, social media butterfly - and editrix of this site. Like what you read? Check out her writing, editing and social media services.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Angela July 20, 2011 at 3:08 am

Beautiful photos, I always like waterfalls.

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Stephanie - The Travel Chica July 20, 2011 at 11:06 am

That is a LOT of people!

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Jenn July 21, 2011 at 10:58 am

I would love to visit–breath taking!! I don’t know if I could handle being in a crowd of people like that–but wow!

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Lofts barcelona July 25, 2011 at 1:38 am

The waterfall is so amazing….i wish i could go there once….love it..

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