Explore Helens - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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This was by far my favorite hike of 2018. Challenging, beautiful, fun and plenty to see. Went of trail to get behind and underneath some waterfalls, but nothing too crazy!

Awesome experience! I’ve never done a subterranean hike and this was absolutely amazing. It wasn’t too crowded today. I went al the way back on the lower trail until I belly crawled to a point where my brain said enough! I did a small portion of the upper trail as I soon realized my knee injury didn’t approve. I will return and finish that tho. Again. Amazing! But please please please bring a headlamp or flashlight. Saw a few iPhone users and it just didn’t cut it.

I loved these views!! Went yesterday and arrived at 3pm and made it to the campsites by 430 or so. It’s an easy hike that goes through tons of beautiful fall foliage, and at this time all the leaves are smelling and crisp and like autumn rain! The sun was out and I got amazing views of Spirit Lake, St. helens, Rainier, Adams, and Mt Hood. It was crazy!!! Wish I could’ve made it to the top. Planned to camp there and completely forgot drinking water and discovered it was a dry trail. Had to turn around once I ran out. So pack a ton of water, and wear sunscreen! I’m definitely coming back to this hike. I loved that we didn’t go through many trees, because that meant open sky and views pretty much the whole way. I used directions from the WTA website and they helped so much. There’s a lot of junctions and sometimes it can be confusing. Print something out beforehand and make sure you know where you’re headed.
Forest roads along the way were paved for the most part with some random yet kinda common cracks and potholes. like really bad ones. They’re not gravel roads, but it looks like the road split in half, maybe due to the eruption of St. helens? Some of the paved roads are cracked and caved in so just drive slow. All vehicles should be good.

lovely trail with gorgeous trees, creek and waterfalls. loved it!

Kids had a blast. My kids are younger so we stuck with the lower caves. But, I would love to come back at some point for the upper section. Definitely worth while for everyone to explore. Bring good lights and back ups.

You can just go rogue in the caves with a headlamp it was absolutely sick

I wanted so bad to climb the Lava Tube..But thinking..will get stuck?

hiking
19 days ago

great hike

Random dude sleeping in cave, easy hike and quite interpretive!

camping
1 month ago

Little late getting this review in as we spent the night up here over Labor Day before heading to Mt Adams. The trail itself is actually only 2.5 miles. All trails had it at almost 4.3 miles but that was coming from the campground. There is a road (that some mistake as a trail) that takes you up to the trail head. Like others have said, it is a pretty good gain. I took some pics but those don’t always do the gain justice. It was a peaceful hike and for most of it can hear the creek so was soothing. Came across a few day hikers, but only one other couple up camping for the night so pretty quiet in the evening. Fairly new batch of frogs as ran across a few hundred babies still congregating together in groups (like when tadpoles) so that was pretty cool. Lake was gorgeous. There were a handful of established sites for camping. Would have given it 5 stars if not for the ORV trail that interests. Not a fan of the noise and trash that comes along with motorized vehicle use. Although it did appear that someone had been up recently cleaning as there were 2 trash bags full of garbage. Overall it was a great hike and would definitely head up that way again. Hope you enjoy the pics. Oh and as far as the road issues, those are all cleared up so no worries there.

7/22/18 - Trail is well groomed, road is good except for a small gravel portion, which was not bad. Expect for people to drive really slow specially if it's a small vehicle or minivan. A bit of advice - Never go on a Sunday, specially if it's a hot day. Lower Lewis was packed cars parked on both sides of the road with more behind us. We decided to skip Lower and went to Middle then went up to Upper, there was no more then 20 people at either. Happy travels!

hiking
1 month ago

Nice easy trail with pretty views.

The views on this trail are just awesome.

hiking
1 month ago

We had so much fun on this trail! We did the harder upper cave with my partner and four kids ranging in age of 6 to 19, they all did really great! Tips: bring a jacket, sturdy shoes, long pants, and a GOOD headlamp. You want your hands for climbing. Being an extra flashlight too. I took us almost an hour and a half to get through just the upper cave portion, not including the trail back. Enjoy!!

hiking
1 month ago

One of the coolest experiences we've had on a hike! We did the more challenging upper cave and, while it definitely took some careful navigating and agility, it was totally worth it. We would have been in rough shape without our sturdy shoes, headlamps, and gloves (not so much for warmth, but to protect your hands as you'll be using them to steady yourself A LOT).

hiking
1 month ago

Fun hike for adults and kids! Chilly in the cave, make sure to bring jackets.

walking
1 month ago

This is an optional loop continuation of the Woods Creek Watchable Wildlife area. Not sure why it is shown as a separate hike. You start at Woods Creek Watchable Wildlife trailhead and then add this easy loop for a little extra mileage. Don’t know where Siler WA, mentioned in the description, is. This loop is just outside of Randle WA. See Woods Creek Watchable Wildlife Trail for better description. Great trails for families with small kids!

hiking
1 month ago

So beautiful and peaceful! The perfect length and difficulty. If you go on a cloudy day be prepared to not see Mt. Saint Helens in all its glory.

It’s an amazing hike that I can’t believe is unregulated. It is typically cool and damp inside the cave so bring a jacket and good quality lights. Those caves eat up the light and it is what true darkness looks like.

1 month ago

Great

I've been in the lower falls..
no words can describe how beautiful it is... Amazing...

An absolutely gorgeous trail… One of my favorites in Washington state so far. I had my son so I just did the suspension bridge trail… But the beautiful thing about this was that there are other trails that are rated moderate through difficult.

There were restroom facilities there, picnic benches, great sites, and friendly people. The only negative thing was that there were a ton of bees in the parking lot and picnic area.

The suspension bridge was absolutely amazing and serene, the river below was incredible. Definitely going to go back again.

walking
1 month ago

This is my second time coming here with my son… We absolutely enjoyed it. This time my boy wanted to bring his friend to show him and the two nine-year-olds had a blast here!! Pretending that I was a monster and they were running through a dark cave with lights… It was like a ghetto remake of the Blair witch Project in a cave instead of the woods.

Amazing place to visit… The walls are surreal and so is the magnitude of it. Bring a jacket because it’s about 20° colder in the cave then it is outside of the cave. Also, bring a good light because it is pitch black.

This is the second cave I have done on alltrails and when you go underground, the GPS does not work at all. I walked the whole route but it only registered before I went underground. This is not a negative… This is just how GPS works and I understand that. I’m just explaining why it only registers or .03 miles instead of the whole trip.

great hike. Wife is a beginner but had great time. Lush wood made for cool hiking

Beautiful!

hiking
1 month ago

Well marked trail and a change up from the normal adventures around Mount St Helens

1 month ago

There are 2 levels to this cave. The main tube (I think it's the lower cave) is really easy walk. We got bored with it and turned around. The other level ( upper cave) is pretty rough. The Rangers said that it is for more experienced cavers. People have had to be rescued due to concussions, broken bones and getting stuck. There's a wall that you have to climb over. Once you do that, there is no turning back and you have to continue onward. This was our first cave, so we didn't do that one. This is info that the Rangers shared with us. Have fun, but be careful!

hiking
1 month ago

SO MUCH FUN. I’m so used to trail hiking that this was such a fun break! We did the lower cave first, then walked up the hill and went DOWN the upper cave rather than up. The rock scrambles in the upper cave are so cool and tons of fun to climb up, but going DOWN there are a few 6-8 foot drops you have to get down that are a little complicated (I needed help down one of them because I couldn’t reach the foothold). USFS and NW Forest Passes not sold on site from what I could see, so make sure you buy ahead of time. I used a flashlight and the flashlight on my phone because I left my headlamp at home. Would definitely suggest a headlamp, possibly gloves, and hiking boots to make your life a little easier on the way. Also FOR SURE dress in layers! The caves hang out at about 45*F year round! Lots of bruises from the rocks but it was totally worth it, one of my favorite adventures I’ve done to date!

Beautiful place

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