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Boulder River Trail

MODERATE 338 reviews

Boulder River Trail is a 8.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Arlington, Washington that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 8.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,646 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

running

beach

forest

partially paved

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

muddy

scramble

The waterfall is unnamed, which is surprising considering its height and beauty. The trail up to the falls is an easy hike, but once at the falls, if you want to get down to the base of the falls, there is a bit of a scramble down (and up).

Beautiful sweet wonderful hike. A little muddy here and there. Would do it again in a heart beat.

hiking
muddy
rocky
23 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail. Highly recommend if you’re looking for a nice easy trail with a pleasant river forest and a couple waterfalls. The pot holes in the first two miles are manageable. The back half of the road has some not so manageable ones that you either need the clearance or a vehicle you don’t care about. Also, I made the mistake of wearing jeans. Don’t do that. They will get soaked if not from rain, from vegetation.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice trail with waterfalls and some good river views for picnicking. After 4-5+ miles the trail was overgrown so we turned around.

hiking
2 months ago

Took the family, youngest 2years. we ended up at the falls so didn't complete the full trail. Watch the little ones, edges of trails are dangerous but if you guide them the trail is plenty wide enough. Decent incline/declines to get a good workout. Parking was decent but crowded. I can see that as the only negative, well that and the road in is pretty bad, ashame FS doesn't maintain these roads. potholes are huge, deep! I can't see a basic car getting through without damage.

hiking
2 months ago

Great trail! Three waterfalls along the way to enjoy. A few spots are a bit over grown but completely manageable. The three mile road up to the trail head is the hardest part due to potholes. Would highly recommend an SUV.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked on June 30th. Absolutely beautiful day. Lots of water falls. River was clear and gorgeous. Beautiful ferns. Totally moderate hike. Road in had lots of potholes, but passable if you drive slow. Do it!

off road driving
3 months ago

We were going to hike this on our way back from the Methow valley but after 7 minutes on the road we gave up. It was so full of huge potholes that we didn’t want to spend the time driving up and back. Might be worth it though if you have the time and a car that doesn’t mind the bouncing.

hiking
3 months ago

Super fun! My ACD loved it, easy enough but didn’t go all the way. Stopped to play in the water for awhile.

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
3 months ago

Beautiful! The river water was stunning. Road in is super sucky, but trail for the most part is really well maintained.

hiking
bugs
muddy
3 months ago

Beautiful trail and worth the hike to see the beautiful waterfalls. We hiked with three under 6 so we only went to the first waterfall. There’s a great place to picnic right by it. Hike down to the picnic spot is steep but doable with kids. Overall this trail was a hit. But BEWARE...the last three miles to the trails is AWFUL. Potholes the size of the road. We made it in a van but do not recommend it. SUV with lots of clearance is recommended.

hiking
4 months ago

Beautiful hike. Good path, rocky in some spots. Lots of trees for shade. Saw quite a few other hikers but wasn’t over crowded. Quite a few kids also. The only part of the experience that I did not like was the road getting up to trail head. It was horrible. Probably wouldn’t go back only because of the road. Also looked like there had been several car break ins where the parking was. There was piles of shattered glass in 3 spots in parking area.

4 months ago

The hike itself is Beautiful. I haven't hiked in several years and was able to do this hike. We did a total of 6 miles. My nine year old son did very well. Only complaint is the three miles of huge potholes that you encounter before you get to the trailhead. I wish someone would fix that. Other than that...Amazing and so Beautiful!

4 months ago

Beautiful hike, stunning waterfalls, and little private beaches. Perfect for exploring. Lots of old growth trees. The trail is easy enough for most. The road to the trailhead has a lot of potholes and is pretty long. Take it slow, be patient, and enjoy the beauty of the drive and it's not so bad.

hiking
4 months ago

The road to the trailhead was super rough. It was about 3 miles of HUGE potholes- would not recommend for smaller cars to go over. Other than that the falls and the hike itself was absolutely beautiful! The rough road was definitely worth the views.

hiking
muddy
4 months ago

The drive to Boulder River Trail is a little challenging for a four-door sedan, but once you are on the trail all of that seems to wash away. Most of the trail follows the length of the river. The highlight is a beautiful cascading waterfall a short distance from the trailhead. From that point, the trail turns inward through the forest. None of the climbs are extremely difficult, but thanks to some mud and downed trees there is enough here to challenge the most seasoned hiker. The trail ends at one of the larger expanses of the river. Without a doubt, it was a beautiful spot to take a break before hiking back to the car. For me, it reminded me of everything I missed about hiking in Washington.

hiking
4 months ago

Ok yea the road was rough, I thought at some point the road would never end, i made it in my van just fine, only bottomed out 3 or 4 times lol, trail was great and then a little rough in spots was a little nerve racking with my 5 year old who kept wanting to run on the bad parts of the trail so my anxietty definitely went crazy, my 8 year old did great, made it to the first waterfall it was amazing and was able to see it up close so was worth all the hectic and I would go again so I can see the rest of the hike, but my 5 year old might stay home lol.

5 months ago

Awesome trail and nice forest area. nice area near falls for a pitstop about one mile into the trail. did this on 5/11. the forest road is pretty bad laden with potholes. watch out.

bugs
muddy
5 months ago

Easy hike and love the moss and little beautiful waterfalls.

hiking
5 months ago

The area is absolutely beautiful. We hit the trail this morning around 8:30 and had it to ourselves for the entire outbound portion. The falls are about 1 mile from the trailhead and the trail up to that point is nicely groomed. After the falls, the trail becomes rougher and more interesting. There were several places where trees had fallen across the trail and notches were cut out of the trees making it easy to step over the trunk and continue. Most of the trail was dry, but there were some muddy patches as well as several places where little creeks passed over the trail. The views along the way are well worth the effort. At the trail end it's worth taking a few minutes to dangle tired feet into the restorative, frigid river.

hiking
5 months ago

The drive to the trail head is the worst. So many BIG potholes. We got to the trail head at around 1:00 on a Sunday, the small parking area was full, we managed to back track a little down the road and found a spot to park. The first waterfall is only a 1.5 mile easy hike! We went the rest of the way and found a second waterfall, but you can’t get down do the water. The trail ends at the river where it looks like you can camp. The trail is very well maintained, there are A LOT of downed trees. The trail was fairly dry. This is one of my favorites hikes!

hiking
5 months ago

5 stars for the waterfalls. Just gorgeous

hiking
5 months ago

Gorgeous day to be on this trail! Easy enough for the 4 year olds in our group to hike unassisted. Road up to the trailhead is a little rough. Plenty of people took sedans up but glad we had a 4wd suv. The waterfall is in about 2 miles and gorgeous. Could not have asked for more picture perfect weather.

hiking
blowdown
5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

A friend left their pack at the trail head on Saturday April 27th. We didn’t realize until we got home, and by the time we went back for it, it was gone. If you happened to pick it up, please let me know. I’d be more than happy to verify any of the contents in the bag.

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