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The two RV Gypsies and Karen's sister Ilse
at to Bridal Veil Falls in Oregon
July 28, 2013

Bridal Veil Falls is a waterfall located on Bridal Veil Creek in the Columbia River Gorge in Multnomah County, Oregon, United States.

The Historic Columbia River Highway passes over Bridal Veil Falls on a bridge. Do not attempt to walk along the bridge over the Historic Highway to view the falls. The road here is a narrow two-lane passage with absolutely no sidewalk.

From a parking lot on the highway, a winding footpath and another bridge led to a vantage point for the falls. The falls consists of two cascades in quick succession along angling rock faces, so when there is a good amount of water the falls looks very much like its namesake. Bridal Veil Falls State Park is located near milepost 28 on the Historic Columbia River Scenic Highway and is accessed off I-84 at Exit 28.

The park offers a nice parking area, picnic tables and restrooms all within easy walking distance from the parking area. Nice grassy areas afford visitors a chance to stretch a blanket in one of the laziest parts of the Columbia River Gorge.

The park is situated in large timber stands; the area was a natural choice as a logging haven once upon a time. The park features two different trails: an upper walking/interpretive trail and a lower hiking trail to the falls (120' tall).

The upper trail takes visitors around the precipice of the cliffs of the Gorge. The trail is fenced beautifully with logged beams and wire to protect visitors along the viewpoint while maximizing every vantage point of the magnificent view of the Gorge. The famous geologic edifice known as the Pillars of Hercules, a 120-foot basalt tower once used as a training site for mountain climbing, can be seen best from the upper trail at Bridal Veil.

The lower trail at Bridal Veil is the one that the two RV Gypsies and Ilse hiked. The trail went downhill to the base of Bridal Veil Falls and was about 0.4 mile round-trip to the falls and back. The trail to Bridal Veil was not wheelchair accessible.

Bridal Veil State Scenic Viewpoint sign

As Karen and Ilse approached a bridge not far from the bottom of Bridal Veil Falls, they saw a big rock that was begging to be photographed from various angles.

a big rock that is begging to be photographed
a big rock that is begging to be photographed

Although short, this was a steep little trail full of switchbacks and was not wheelchair accessible. Along the way there were a few unwanted wild plants of this area -- such as poison oak -- so it was important to keep on the path. The creek hustled down from the top of nearby Larch Mountain, tumbled over the cliff and eventually flowed into the mighty Columbia River.

The creek

There is a flight of stairs at the base of Bridal Veil. From part way up the stairs, Lee took a photo of Ilse and Karen by the falls.

Karen and her sister by Bridal Veil Falls
Karen and her sister by Bridal Veil Falls

Continuing up the stairs, beautiful Bridal Veil Falls was elegant and graceful and fully appreciated from the deck of a viewing platform rebuilt in 1996.

Ilse and Lee on the viewing platform
Ilse on the viewing platform
Bridal Veil Falls
Bridal Veil Falls

Lee Duquette and several other people ventured off the platform to a trail that led to the bottom of the falls. Lee safely kept his distance from the falls and stayed behind the big rock. Other jerks actually sat on top of the big rock with their legs dangling over the side near the falls.

Lee Duquette at the bottom of Bridal Veil Falls
Lee Duquette waves to Karenn and Ilse who are still on the viewing deck
Bridal Veil Falls
Bridal Veil Falls
Bridal Veil Falls

The trail back to the parking lot was all uphill.

The trail back to the parking lot is all uphill.
Karen and Ilse on the stiarcase to the parking lot

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