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Visited: April 21, 2017
Description: A short hike to a waterfall just off the Pacific Crest Trail. Cheryl Stray, where you at?!
Length: 3.8 miles roundtrip
Elevation: 700 feet
Duration: 1.5 – 2 hours
Parking: Roadside. We parked at PCT Winter Trailhead (45.6595268,-121.898062)
Best time to go: Anytime
Bring: Camera, light water, snack
Back in 2015, Alice randomly found Cheryl Stray’s book, Wild, under her seat on an international flight home. Wild was Cheryl’s memoir describing her solo 1100+ mile hike on the Pacific Crest Trail. After reading her story, Alice passed the book to Linda and we became slightly infatuated with her journey. Whether it was a sign from the Hiking Gods or just an unlikely coincidence, we’ve always been interested in the PCT.
After hiking consistently and obsessively for the past 3 years, we find comfort in any familiarity in the trails we encounter. Before our Portland trip, we discovered that Dry Creek Falls runs along the PCT and is close to the location where Cheryl ended her hike! We knew we had to add this to our trip.
Cheryl ended her hike at the (now) infamous Bridge of Gods just 2 miles from the Dry Creek Falls Trailhead. It was exciting for us to know that we were going to hike some of the last miles that Cheryl hiked! We may have called out her name a few times at the beginning of the hike 😛
After hiking close to 18 miles that day, Dry Creek Falls was our LAST hike of the day. We would have skipped it because our knees were aching from our hikes earlier that day but we didn’t want to disappoint Cheryl!
You’ll only be hiking along the Pacific Crest Trail (South) for 1.7 miles before making a right onto Dry Creek Falls Trail. We pictured Cheryl’s last few miles of her 1100+ mile journey and wonder if we could ever hike for that long of a distance. As much as we like hiking, we can always agree that we are more destination hikers. This means we hike with a short term goal where we need to be rewarded with a mountain peak or a waterfall (or like ten waterfalls ). Also, the idea of a 50 pound pack is something we both agree we’re NOT ready for.
It was a pretty slow and easy slight up hill climb. It gets slightly steeper after making a right onto Dry Creek Falls and you’ll be leaving Cheryl’s footsteps behind but you’re only 0.2 miles from your destination.
If you’re visiting at the right time, you will hear the waterfall and see that Dry Creek Falls was far from being dry! The waterfall was pouring and it was absolutely stunning.
Compared to other waterfalls we’ve seen that day, Dry Creek was a little underwhelming but there is much more solitude in this hike. We hardly encountered anyone on this hike which we liked. We may also have appreciated the hike less because our knees were screaming at us for putting in some many miles already.
We are glad we came though, mostly to cross paths with the Pacific Crest Trail. This isn’t the first time we have crossed with trails with the PCT and it certainly won’t be the last. Who knows maybe you’ll see these two HikeSnobs complete the full journey… ;P
- If you’re sort of infatuated with the PCT, this is a great short hike to do.
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