dogs on leash
Absolutely beautiful setting! Brought my 12 and 7 year old daughters and they did great. We wanted to make it to the top but they were done by the 5th mile. Bring kids that are good hikers and comfortable with long distances. I definitely recommend this trail to all who love to hike along the water!
I suggest hiking here in the early spring or late fall to truly enjoy the views. The summer time can be quite busy as Portlanders will travel out here to swim in the opal waters. I went in late March to have most of the place to ourselves. A must see for Oregonians!
Everything you need to know about this hike 3/15/17:
The trail head is difficult to find and the marker is hidden in the bushes. After you turn off willamette highway, follow the road for approximately 3-4 miles and you will come to a fork, keep left. Drive slow, there are pretty bad pot holes. Continue another mile or so and you will come across the "parking lot" on the right side of the road. You can recognize the "parking lot" because it has a fairly steep "driveway" (15 yards or so long), there is space for about 5 cars, and there is another road that continues past the parking lot to the right. The trailhead is on the right/uphill side of the parking lot, again it is terribly marked and hardly even looks like a trailhead. Here are some indicators you are on the trail:
-it is uphill the entire way
-there is a (creepy) 3 walled covered shelter about half way up
-when you hit the paved road about 2/3 of the way up the trail continues across the road slightly to the right, there is a hiker sign there
Also, you might as well turn off the GPS as soon as you turn off the highway, it will say "arrived" when you are still a couple miles from the trial head. Finally, the trail is definitely not 9 miles round trip, I would guess more like 6 miles round trip. we made it up in an hour and a half and about an hour down. The trail is very muddy in places but the view at the top is great!