WHYCHUS CREEK FALLS

Squaw Creek Falls
    

The first in a trio of waterfalls along Whychus Creek, this one is referred to as Lower Falls. The trail takes you to an overlook, but we had seen a photo taken from creekside so we scrambled down the embankment holding onto tree branches and slid down the hillside.

The photo op was well worth the effort. Lower Falls is wider than it is tall - about 60 feet across - and gives off a strong mist.

On our way back up, we discovered a trail of sorts. Lesson learned: if you're standing at the overlook and decide to make the 200-foot trek downward to the creek, look to your right for a trail instead of sliding straight down the hill. :)

 

 

Three Sisters
     

From the gravel road leading out to the trailhead are "Oh, wow!" views of all three Sisters and Broken Top (BT not shown in this photo). We stopped a couple times to shoot pictures but then Gary finally just let me out of the vehicle with the camera and followed as I walked along the road snapping photos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The trail starts well-maintained ...

   
Three Sisters Falls Trail

 

Falls Trail
 

... but narrows and is overgrown in places as you ascend. There's a good deal of ducking under low-hanging branches and stepping over logs with the occasional tree roots serving as stair steps.

Coming back downhill, we veered off the trail a couple times, but as all roads lead downhill within sight or sound of the creek, one is never really lost.

 

 

Middle Falls
     

Middle Falls is impressive in its own right, but pales in comparison with its competition. There's a lovely ledge if you want to just sit and dangle your feet and enjoy the music for a while.

 

 

Squaw Creek Falls - Upper Falls
   
Upper Falls cascades 225 feet downward. You can see it high above the trail from about mile out.  The trail ends close to where this photo was taken, but we scrambled a little further up across a hillside of shale and found a perch overlooking the cataract where we spread our picnic lunch.

 

 

Lupine
     

Lupine grows along the trail in June. Don't forget to pack your mosquito repellant.

 

Elevation: The trail begins at 4,763 feet and ascends to 5,325, an elevation gain of 562 feet.

Trail distance: 3.5 miles round trip

Rated: Easy to moderate

Latitude: 44.14986

Longitude: 121.6827

Directions: From Bend, take Highway 20 to Sisters. Turn left at Elm Street in the middle of town (road sign indicates Three Creek Lake). About 7 miles out, turn right at a sign marked Whychus Creek (FS Road 1514) just past the Chain Up area. Travel 5 miles on this gravel road and then turn left onto a bumpy dirt road (Road 600) just before the bridge crossing Whychus Creek. Travel 2 miles on this rocky road and bear left at a T-junction. The trailhead is mile from this point.

Fees: None