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Vicinity Location: The trailhead is about 65 miles east of Portland,
in the Columbia River Gorge.

Directions:
From
Portland, drive on I-84 East from Portland for about 65 miles, driving past
Hood River.

Take
exit 69 for U.S. 30 and drive towards Mosier for .2 mile.

Turn
right at the stop sign onto U.S. 30 E and drive for about 0.3 mile to the totem
pole on the left side of the road near 1st Ave (Hwy 30) and Washington St.

Park
along the road near the totem pole. There is overflow parking at the Mosier
City Parking lot which is about 100 feet past the totem pole. It leads down to
a gravel area between Highway 30 and the railroad tracks.

There
is a portable toilet at the designated trailhead parking.

No
permits are needed to park.

Stay on
the trail due to sensitive plants and nearby private property. Smoking,
hunting, and bicycles are prohibited.

Trail:
Mosier
Plateau Trail.

There
is a geocache at: N 45° 40.984 W 121° 23.410 Info at Geocaching.com

Though
pets are not prohibited, they are discouraged to avoid conflicts with wildlife.

History:
In 2007 Nancy Russell purchased this 42-acre of land and deeded it to the
Friends of the Columbia Gorge. Nancy founded the Friends of the Gorge in 1980.
The trail was started in 2011 and officially opened on September, 2013. The
trail was built by volunteers and several groups such as Trail Keepers of
Oregon , Washington Trails Association, and Northwest Youth Corps.

Trail Maps:
Topo MapDownload Garmin .gpx file – future

Length and Elevation:
3
miles roundtrip for the out and back trail. Elevation at the trailhead is 125
feet. Elevation gain totals 480 feet. Total gain and loss is 960 feet. Highest
elevation is 580 feet.

Review: April
26, 2014.
From
the parking area, walk east about 300 feet, over the Hwy 30 bridge crossing
Mosier Creek. Just after the bridge and on the right side of the road is a
bench and the trailhead.

From
the trailhead walk uphill along Mosier Creek, passing some housing units and
soon thereafter walking through a pioneer cemetery and Pocket Park. Most of the
grave markers in the cemetery are from the late 1800’s with some of the Mosier
family buried here. In spring lilacs bloom happily here and their fragrance is
delightful.

Past
the cemetery you next drop down a bit and arrive at a viewpoint of Mosier Creek
Falls as it tumbles down into a narrow canyon. In the summer the pool below the
main falls is a popular swimming hole.

The
trail drops down to an access point to the falls, then begins climbing a well
maintained trail through a grassy meadow. As the trail climbs away from the
creek, you go up a couple of switchbacks and a set of stairs.

In the
spring, the higher you climb, the more wildflowers you see. Looking up, you may
be tempted to wander off the trail to see the wildflowers. Stay on the trail
because better views will soon be yours. In spring you’ll see Columbia desert
parsley, yellow bells, fiddleneck, grass widows, lupine and lots of Balsamroot.
Across the river, the Coyote Wall trail is just visible on the Washington side.

Climbing
to the top of the last set of stairs, the trail becomes surrounded by
wildflowers, mainly balsamroot and lupines. The viewpoint provides a
spectacular view looking west with acres of flowers in the foreground and the
Columbia River flowing past basalt cliffs in the distance.

From
the viewpoint there is a trail that creates a loop along the top of the
plateau. During the peak of the wildflower season the views are nothing short
of spectacular and the wildflowers carpet the ground. Walk clockwise to get the
best views in first. Walking along the trail you’ll pass a couple of concrete
pads from demolished buildings.

The
trail parallels the Gorge for a bit then meets with a gravel road. You can
follow a road to Hwy 30 and return via Hwy 30 back to the trailhead, but I
don’t like the idea of walking with the traffic. Instead, turn right and keep
right to the road on the right which leads back to the concrete pads. From
there follow the trail back down along Mosier Creek to the trailhead.

This
is a spectacular trail in April. This is in my top 20 wildflower hikes for
spring because of the flowers and the views of the Gorge. If you miss the
wildflower season then plan this hike for next year. This is a great hike for
kids because if you stay on the trail, there are no unfenced cliffs.

Enjoy
the photos!

Gallery Pics

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Steve