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White Bluffs North Slope Trail

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Lions Park

White Bluffs North Slope Trail is a 5.5 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Othello, Washington that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 5.5 miles Elevation Gain: 646 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Just past milepost 63 on SR 24 turn right onto the gated gravel road. After 4 miles turn right at the 4-way intersection onto the paved road (continuing straight leads to the South Slope trail after 4 more miles) Drive 1.4 miles to the trail-head which is located on the right side of the road just before a creek crossing and a few trees. There is no parking lot, just an arched turn off

hiking
no shade
18 hours ago

great hike along the edge of the bluffs overlooking the Columbia. End at dunes which are a great way midway point to relax. We went at 4 pm and it was perfect with the wind. maybe 2 other people hiking at that time. very beautiful

hiking
no shade
20 hours ago

Quick and easy hike to some fun sand dunes. Wear chacos and your shoes won’t get filled with it. Great for kids and dogs. No shade, so go when it’s not so hot. No access to bathrooms or water.

no shade
1 day ago

A warm May day, today's mid-day start made for a hot hike. Recommend tackling this from May and later as a morning excursion for sure. we we went as far as the beginning stages of the far north dune and recorded 5.5 miles round-trip. Only a few flowers but the views, stunning. The trail is almost 3/4 fairly loose sand trail so while little elevation involved, it will work you over some. A good fitting well secured shoe is a must and even with ours well sinched, we stopped once to empty our shoes. Saw no wild life, to be expected in the heat of the day, but many bird, small rodent, coyote and on the river down side of the north dune, elk tracks. The sand makes for an easy canvass of tracks. On our return, we took the paved boat launch road toward the river (right out of the parking area) to soak our feet in the river and found the oldest structure in Franklin County, where in the old White Bluffs settlement, the ferry traversed across the river. Very cool hike and landscape.

hiking
8 days ago

This was a fun and easy trail for all ages. Note that the directions to get there are as if you are driving East on SR 24, if coming in from Spokane area, you are likely driving west and would turn “left” at milepost 63. The rest of the directions to get to trailhead are spot on. Yes you will get sand in your shoes, but we’ll worth it, fun to see!!

Great view! Took kids & they all enjoyed it. Wasn’t expecting mostly a sandy trail, prepare for sand to fill your shoes.

hiking
no shade
29 days ago

Open as of today 4/26- I would recommend for older children and avoid coming mid day, there is no shade and there are a few spots that were hard to maneuver with a 5 year old but it was a beautiful landscape

1 month ago

Anyone know if this is open?

hiking
1 month ago

The gate was open yesterday and was easy to use social distancing with just a few people on the trail. The scenery was beautiful and it was a easy hike.

I would recommend this trail in later winter or early spring, before things get to hot - Feb through April. I bet fall would be lovely too! We arrived a little before 10 AM and there was not a soul in site. Exactly what we were looking for ~ beautiful vistas with a chance to explore the area while still maintaining a safe social distance from others. The landscape is wide open and trail easy to follow with a sandy path leading the way. Choose solid hiking boots over running-type shoes as my light weight mesh trail runners carried about 2 pounds of sand off the trails. We hiked in solitude, until we climbed out from the waters edge at the end of the trail. The parking area was overflowing with cars and families, looking for a place to explore and get out of the house during our stay at home order. Almost impossible to keep 6-10 feet distance near the parked cars. So try to go early or during the week. An amazing landscape and birders paradise. We saw hawks and eagles flying over head; geese along the waters edge; a white egret fishing in a nearby pond; red-winged black birds in full song perching on the cat tails; and a colony of swallows in poetic flight along the side of the cliff ~ nesting in hundreds of burrows carved into the rock face. If you use the ALLTRAILS map, you can find one man-made trail directly in front of the first sand dune that provides safe access to the vegetation below. We were able to walk up to the waters edge, where we saw hoof prints from a small herd of mule deer that crossed the water to access the island of land in the middle of the river. Also saw a set of beaver tracks along the shore line. It’s hard to believe this body of water is the Columbia River. Very calm and peaceful. It is the last non-tidal, free flowing section of the river in the United States and is not part of a reservoir. The area has been untouched by development or agriculture for decades and was created in 2000 from a former security buffer around a nuclear plant. Unfortunately, this national monument is 1 of 27 under review for possible rescinding of that title. Would love to grab a chair, a set or binoculars and lunch and sit along the shoreline for the better part of the day watching the wildlife. Until next time...... happy trails.

hiking
1 month ago

Heard they shut this one down too. Gate is closed

hiking
off trail
scramble
1 month ago

Wonderful day social distancing. This is a hike we would only do in spring bc it would be brutal in summer. Made a questionable decision to follow a game trail down to the river from the second dune. We recommend finding the “official” trail down much closer to the first dune. It was a fun adventure and we worked very hard to stay on game trails to protect the soil. The walk along the river was lovely and the dunes were beautiful. Few people on the trail.

hiking
no shade
2 months ago

Went today with 4 kids all under 8. It was a fun trail, some steep sides so just keep an eye on little ones when you are near the edges but we loved it! Awesome views and it was a great day to see the views. Also saw a coyote, some deer and lots of different birds. The gravel road to the trailhead is quite long so be prepared for that.

hiking
2 months ago

Went this weekend. it was chilly and windy, about 30 degrees. Watcb out for horse . Quick easy hike with awesome views. Quiet and secluded.

hiking
2 months ago

Loved the upper trail, but never really did find an actual lower trail, mostly game trails that were hard in places to follow back out. Great views! Whole trail to ourselves. Definitely winter or early spring hike. Will do again!

hiking
bugs
no shade
over grown
7 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

I didn’t have much expectation but this turned out to be an awesome 4.5 mile hike to the sand dunes and back! It helps that yesterday I was just at the other side Washington (2hours away) in the rainforest. And today I am on a random sand dune just by myself, under the clouds and over looking the river! This was a much needed alone time in nature and the desert flowers are actually very pretty.

hiking
no shade
washed out
10 months ago

hiking
no shade
11 months ago

hiking
Wed May 22 2019

Fun hike with kids. It was a nice cool morning. Saw lots of beetles and scat on trail. Still some flowers out. Will be back! Shows there is amazing beauty in the desert

Mon Apr 22 2019

our favorite annual spring weekend walk for 15 years

hiking
Fri Apr 19 2019

Beautiful hike along the river to the sand dunes. Only saw one other couple on the trail. Gives you the feeling that your walking on a beach trail. Will definitely be going back.

Sat Jan 26 2019

Wow. Sand dunes are phenomenal. Reminded me a bit of Death Valley. It got quite windy, but it was a clear day. Opted for the return trip at lower elevation, but had some trouble finding the trail back up. It ended up being a little bit of a scramble. Definitely make time to sit on the dunes and take it all in, and be sure to learn some of the history of the area!

Wed Nov 28 2018

Saw a bald eagle close up. And the granite scattered about in the sand was the coolest thing. As well as the coyotes that began yelping at sun set. Delightful.

hiking
Sun Oct 07 2018

Absolutely beautiful hike if you can look past the power lines to the south. Good sized sand dunes, plenty of sagebrush, rabbitbrush and other hardy desert vegetation to enjoy.

Thu Aug 02 2018

Awesome hike!! The views are absolutely breathtaking and you only have to hike about a quarter of a mile before you find yourself on the ridge overlooking the river bend. The rest of the trail just mirrors the cliff edge and you’re treated to amazing views the entire time. I didn’t encounter any rattlesnakes but I was probably lucky, they’re definitely out there. I saw a couple lizards and a coyote! The sand dunes are amazing too. Pretty cool to see especially while constantly being surrounded by sagebrush. Bring plenty of water it can get really toasty up there!!

hiking
Wed Apr 25 2018

Road in and trail in great condition. Keep your eyes and ears open for rattlesnakes we saw one on the trail that we had to go around.

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