Oregon trip report

If you are a follower of my FB page, you know I recently took a trip to Portland Oregon, piggybacking off a work trip with my wonderful wife. We arrived a few days prior to her seminar, having the weekend to explore places together. The first day we spent at Panther Creek Falls which is just across the Columbia River in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. It was a short 45 min drive from our hotel, the majority of the time was spent driving up into the mountain on a forest service road. It was a little harder to find than expected, mainly because there are no signs directing you to the falls when you were close. Using a drop pin on my google map, I found an area to park nearby the falls and when I looked off of the roadside, it was an extremely steep drop down to the river. We got into the car and started to head down stream looking for a better access point when I noticed spray painted on the road “Falls” with an arrow pointing into the woods. The trail was there, although pretty overgrown and hard to see at first. We found our way down the trail which was only a 5 minute walk and came to an observation platform. The viewpoint of the falls is from across the river and nearly even with the start of the falls from the other side. I looked all around for a way down into the stream but the vertical drop was too much to consider. After a short period, Jenn went back to the car and I looked around some more for a way down to the bottom. I finally found a rope that was tied off onto a rock face, which was there for anyone brave enough to scale down about 20 feet to better footing. I’m sure if Jenn were with me at that point, she would have given me a hard time about taking my chances on it. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to get to a different vantage point. In the afternoon we drove out to Cannon Beach, about a 2 hour drive from Portland. The sunset weather wasn’t cooperating, but we had an amazing time exploring the quaint little town and a portion of the beach. I am already planning another trip back out there to do some coastal photography.

This first shot is from Panther Creek Falls, a 130′ beautiful beast. As you can see, the amount of green foliage is truly overwhelming. The entire area is more or less a temperate rain forest and is everything we expected. I distinctly remember driving the forest service road on the way to the falls and Jenn and I both commented at the same time about how green everything was. It was shade and brightness of green I have never seen before. Amazing is all I can say. More to follow in the coming days…

Panther Creek Falls - Gifford Pinchot National Forest, WA © Rob Loughrey
Panther Creek Falls – Gifford Pinchot National Forest, WA © Rob Loughrey