Oneonta Gorge

Portland, Oregon

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This little adventure is indeed one-of-a-kind. The Oneonta Gorge is a slot canyon barely 0.6 mile long in the Columbia River Gorge. Designated a botanical area by the US Forest Service, the steep basalt walls of the canyon are home to numerous rare plants and an incredibly scenic waterfall. At just over a mile round-trip, this hike doesn’t set any distance records, but burning lungs and thigh muscles aren’t why people visit this falls. The moment you descend the staircase leading to the Oneonta Creek, you’re welcomed with an air temperature that can be as much as twenty degrees cooler than where you parked. There may be no better place in the Columbia River Gorge on a hot summer day! The cool canyon is narrow, with 100-foot walls of rock on either side. First things first, however, you have to get up, over, or around a large logjam that changes with each season. Exercise caution here and gauge your hiking party’s abilities. Though children frequently make this journey under the watchful eye of parents, this is very much a personal judgment call. Once the jam has been negotiated, the actual journey begins. Don’t bother looking for a trail here—Oneonta Creek is the trail.
Hiking Waterfalls in Oregon

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Hiking Waterfalls in Oregon

by Adam Sawyer (Falcon Guides)

This little adventure is indeed one-of-a-kind. The Oneonta Gorge is a slot canyon barely 0.6 mile long in the Columbia River Gorge. Designated a botanical area by the US Forest Service, the steep basalt walls of the canyon are home to numerous rare plants and an incredibly scenic waterfall. At just over a mile round-trip, this hike doesn’t set any distance records, but burning lungs and thigh muscles aren’t why people visit this falls.

The moment you descend the staircase leading to the Oneonta Creek, you’re welcomed with an air temperature that can be as much as twenty degrees cooler than where you parked. There may be no better place in the Columbia River Gorge on a hot summer day! The cool canyon is narrow, with 100-foot walls of rock on either side. First things first, however, you have to get up, over, or around a large logjam that changes with each season.

Exercise caution here and gauge your hiking party’s abilities. Though children frequently make this journey under the watchful eye of parents, this is very much a personal judgment call. Once the jam has been negotiated, the actual journey begins. Don’t bother looking for a trail here—Oneonta Creek is the trail.

© 2014 Adam Sawyer/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Portland
Distance: 1.2
Elevation Gain: 70 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: 1- 2 hours
Features: Waterfalls
Local Contacts: Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, (541) 308-1700, www.fs.usda.gov/crgnsa
Local Maps: DeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer Oregon, page 24, F1
Driving Directions: Directions to Oneonta Gorge

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Apr 2018