Monday, June 6, 2011

June 6 - Hiking to Drift Creek Falls

The day is overcast with a light spray of precipitation, on and off at 14C; cool but good for physical activity.  The drive to the trailhead is about 15 miles off the highway up a long very winding single lane road called Nation Forest road 17, that was at one time used for logging. I expected something like a dirt road but this must be a very popular hike because it had the smoothest pavement we have ever been on and the lower branches of the trees were even trimmed off so you could see around the sharp corners.


On the way up we didn’t meet any cars and find we are the first to start the trek today (empty parking lot and spider threads across the trail are the giveaway).  We can tell by the volume of footprints in the wet spots that many walked this path yesterday.






What makes this hike special is the suspension bridge that crosses the chasm at the falls. It is 250 feet long and 100 feet above the ground. It was very weird seeing it after hiking 3 kilometers from the car. The bridge was a bit of a trial for Jennie as she has a bit of acrophobia. Even with slow even footsteps it started to swing a bit.



And the first view of the waterfall.



The trail then winds down some switchbacks to the bottom of the falls. We were fortunate to get to the waterfall first, as we enjoyed a peaceful lunch listening to nature and splashing water, before other visitors arrived. 



Jennie reached down to almost grab what she thought was a rubber toy someone had lost. Then it moved!


Heading back here is the view down from the bridge to where we had been.


After the hike, since Cape Foulweather was on the way back, we stopped to see if there were any more whales but no. The wind was also stronger today so we continued along to the Devil’s Punchbowl to see if the wave action is more exciting.  Again no.


There were some splashes around us.



Our next stop was the tallest Oregon lighthouse, 93’ high, at Yaquina Head. It is still in operation but tourists are allowed to climb the 111 steps circular staircase and poke your head through to see the original lens. Currently it uses a 1000 watt electric bulb.




There is a bird nesting site here and some hiking trails but by this time is was late so we will come back another day.



No comments:

Post a Comment