Catherine Creek Trail

EASY 89 reviews

Catherine Creek Trail is a 2.6 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Lyle, Washington that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

2.6 miles
446 feet

dogs on leash

kid friendly




nature trips

trail running







wild flowers



The hike takes you past a waterfall, up through rocks and oaks to another waterfall to get to some beautiful views. There is a lot of poison oak, so leave your pant legs on and don't let your hands dangle aimlessly into tall vegetation along the trail. There is an rock arch that seems out of place in the environment, don't plan on getting too close it is clearly marked off.

1 month ago

Just a few grass widows but views wonderful. Had not done the loop before, enjoyed it.

7 months ago

Wrong time of year to go. Too hot and dry, but beautiful. Will try it again in the spring

8 months ago

Nearly all vegetation is dried out. The arch isn't very visible. The other aspects of the trail are along the portion where you would end up walking over 4 miles and end up far from your car leaving you to either do a return trip through this desert landscape or walk along a country road with no shoulder and people speeding along.

9 months ago

Warning for pet owners! I have never had flea or tick issues with my dog (8 years). Came home from this hike with 5 ticks. Going to the vet tomorrow :(

9 months ago

Great view short hikes

9 months ago

Short hike with a great view of mt hood once you get to the top. Nothing to write home about though :(

9 months ago

I love this hike! it's somewhat of a Christmas tradition for us

9 months ago

Did the trail to the south of Hiway 8 - great views! There were 2 porta-potties available. The trail is well paved and has several benches at strategic points for rest or contemplation. There are some huge iris flowers ready to bloom under a pine tree. I was there very early in the morning and saw only one other person on the trail.

9 months ago

Unfortunately we missed the spring flowers. We took the path to the right and made our way up through the woods. When we came out by the field the view of the Columbia Gorge and Mt Hood was fantastic. All in all a 4 mile hike with 1,175 foot elevation gain. Will try again next year to see the wild flowers.

10 months ago

Loved the wild flowers. Great get away. We went April 26. Little traffic.

Fun hike that offers different types of great visual experiences. At the end of the hike I did brush off a tick from my son's clothing and killed it, so be aware of that type of situation happening.

Friday, January 06, 2017

Short and sweet, although we couldn't see much of the trail as there was so much snow. Nice view onto the Columbia river and gorge. This hike is probably nice when it's birding and wildflower season.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Beautiful. Easy hike.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Never saw a waterfall. Glad I had a map because the trail was difficult to follow. Very rocky. Great meadows of wild flowers and good views of the Hood River

Friday, May 20, 2016

green Meadows, nice hike

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Perfect day. Wildflower and a spectacular view!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Decent short loop with views of Mt. Hood. There is not a lot of shade or breeze so beware on a hot day.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

We like this trail. It has a gentle climb through woodlands with excellent views down the Columbia River. Note that there are two "parts" to the trail: the paved trail down to the Columbia and the trail on the north side of the road leading into the hills.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

When we arrived we saw a sign saying "hunting season - wear blaze orange." We didn't know to expect that so we just did the little universal access trail across the street instead.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Catherine Creek, what a great trail. So I am use to the trails in the lush green forests of the Columbia River Gorge but this trail is pleasantly different. We hiked May 9th and didn't see all the many wildflowers that are supposed to be amazing on this trail if you hit it right. 2015 has just been an early year for wildflowers. The ideal time is supposed to be right around Easter, we'll go then next year.

Not too steep of a hike but enough of a climb to get some pretty incredible views after only about a mile and a half of hiking.

There isn't just one trail here. Many trails criss cross allowing you to hike for a while, come to "Y" in the trail and decide which way you want to go. Kind of fun that way. It seemed like you couldn't get lost as all trails started and ended back at the parking lot. When starting out from the parking lot there are two trails heading up the hill, take the one on the right if you want to see the rock arch (there aren't any instructions up there for this).

I plan on hiking this trail again at different times of the year as I think the different seasons would reveal different kinds of beauty.

Monday, March 02, 2015

March 1 - it was 60f and sunny. The spring flowers were out, it was green, and there were water pools and flowing streams! It was so awesome!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

very nice

Monday, February 16, 2015

We loved this simple yet fun walk. Not too hard or easy great views in a few spots.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Overall this is a pretty cool short trail with a sort of split personality. After leaving the trail head stick to the right, walk down the road for a short distance as you enter the narrow valley. While we missed out on all of the wild flowers and the creek itself due to our November hike, it was still very cool to look at the fallen leaves and bare trees. The almost dead feel of the trees and plants felt in place with the abandoned corral and downed shed/house. The valley blocked the winds from the gorge as well. The views of the arch were very cool. The arch is fenced off in the valley as well as up top. After passing the corral, the trail climbs up a steeper road where you are greeted to a large row of power lines. That part sucks, but hey, you can't always get the perfect trail. Under the power lines veer off of the main trail to the right and take the now narrow trail. follow this around to the top of the ridge where you get all the cool views of the Columbia River. It was quite overcast the day we went so we were not able to see Mt. Hood. While that sucked, it was still very nice, and very windy, at the top. Cool views back down at the corral and the valley we had just walked in. There are more power lines however along the top, As we neared the end of the trail, we went East (to our left) and started to walk along the road for a while before i realized that we had missed the turn West to the parking lot. The spit is very close to yet even more power lines and I missed the right path as I was wondering if the lines were low enough to hit my head. We did have to walk along the Old Hwy 8 road for about 1/4 mile back to the parking lot. that part also sucked.

Overall cool little trail. Other reviews mention poison oak, I don't know if there was any as I could not pick it out of a line up. We were both in jeans and coats due to the cool weather and neither of us appear to have any negative affects. I would love to come back in the spring when the creek is full and the flowers are in bloom, and the weather is clear. But if you haven't been in November, it's pretty cool its self. The lack of a creek and leaves on the trees add to the feel of the abandoned area.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Hiked Catherine Creek in late May on a sunny Saturday. Not very crowded which was nice, but it was very warm. We started out on the hike described in the description on this site. Pretty easy hike, slight upgrade,not very challenging. Past the arch, keep going up until up go under the power lines. At this point we split of to the left from the described trail and followed the path up. The trail becomes a little more narrow and steep through this portion. We climbed until the trail led to the top of the ridge. At this point the trail splits right and left. Go left if you want to continue going up. We chose to go right and started heading back down. We connected back up with the described trail and followed it all the way back down to the road. This side trip added about .8 miles; it was worth it to add the extra difficulty that you don't get on the main trail. The views from the top of the ridge are spectacular. Views of the gorge, Hood River, islands in the river and Mt. Hood were picture worthy. The trail down is rocky so wear sturdy shoes. Unfortunately when you get to the top of the arch, it is fenced off so you can't really see it. Overall this was fun but very warm day.

Friday, April 18, 2014

A pretty area during spring with several connecting trail options to explore that can range from hiking through trees to following rocky cliffs, to wide open meadows high above the Columbia River Gorge. I prefer hikes that are a little more challenging but it was ok.

Monday, February 03, 2014

This is a great little hike with a lot of diversity. You can see water rushing through the creeks, a natural rock arch, spectacular wildflowers and amazing views of the Columbia River Gorge. Bring a good description of this hike, as the whole Catherine Creek area is a bit of a work in progress. Trails intersect everywhere and signage is completely lacking. Craig Romano's 'Day Hiking Columbia River Gorge' is the book we use for the best description of this hike, as well as descriptions of where the intersecting trails will take you. Do this one in early spring for the amazing wildflower displays and add on the lower loops handicapped accessible area as well.

Monday, March 18, 2013

This is a traific small hike if you want to see some good views of the gorge without straining yourself. One issue I had was the trail head, even though there is information about the area, nothing about the loop. When you start out take the dirt road to the right and not the left. It almost feels like you are entering onto someones property, dont worry the road ends soon. One ascent you will pass a nice looking creek and a stone arch off to the right (clearly marked off). On the way down you start noticing the views, and pass over a few creeks, which are a highlight of the trail. I recomend this hike for anyone who wants to do a small day hike. Many places to have a picnic.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Catherine Creek upper left trail. Terrain is not overly friendly, jagged rocks most of the way. Very few shaded areas and lots of poison oak along the way. This is not recommended to those who don't like to walk up a gradual slope. View: Panoramic views around every turn. Beautiful view of the Columbia River east and west. View of Rowland Lake. The landscape/foilage was dry and yellow which allowed its own unique beauty. Suggested trail hike: Spring or Fall after the heat has dropped. Bring plenty of water and light snack. Wear pants not shorts or capris. Wear a good pair of shoes NOT sandals or flip-flops. Child friendly: yes but to a certain point. My 3 year old did great but she is use to doing this stuff. The average 3 year old woud not like this hike. I also have an 8, 11, and 14 year old who all are use to this and did well. Know you child/ren and know what they can do. I was on pins and needles at points because grace is not a gene of this family! I just kept reminding my kids "slow and easy kids, slow and easy" and "NO RUNNING!" lol We made it though, no falls, no twisted ankles, and in one piece! Overall: we feel the hike was worth it even in the heat. The views were great and we took small shade breaks to sip water as we came to them. We will do catherine Creek again and try a different trail that she has to offer.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

A trail with a variety of interests. We used Romano's Day Hiking the Columbia River Gorge for directions as it is not signed. Basically, go west out of the parking on the old highway, turn right after the waterfall at the one and only trail sign at little farther, then follow the trail up to great views through rocks and oaks, past a waterfall and creek, watching wild flowers, lizards and birds. There are a couple of trails off to the right to view points, but bottom line, on the main trail, always keep to the right when the trail splits. This is described as a loop, but we would go in about 2 miles and turn around and come back out the same way. This would be where you cross the last stream in a ravine after a long grassy slope. The only memorable thing after that point is the Native American talus pits which we would forgo to go back an interesting way. Otherwise you close the loop by hiking 1.3 miles on a paved road with cars whizzing by. Note: Poison oak abounds, so keep the pant legs on and hands up where brush narrows the trail.

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