Jul 21, 2012
- Type of Outing
- Day hike
- Read More in our Hiking Guide
- Hike: Wallace Falls
- Region: Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West
- Agency: Washington State Parks
- Avg Rating: 4.14
- Hiking Companions
- Hiked with kids
- Why You Should Go Now
- Wildflowers blooming
- Ripe berries
- Be Aware Of
After reading reviews and reports, we decided to head out early. We reached the trailhead/parking area at 10am. Remember, if you don't have a DISCOVER pass, the parking fee is $10. We have the orange trail pass so we had to pay. My husband and I struck out at 10 and we got back to the car at 1:30 so about 3.5 hours in and back.
The beginning is a bit deceiving as it meanders through a meadow with power lines buzzing along overhead. It turns into the forest and then proceeds to drop and climb over the course of the first mile. The trail is well maintained and there are plenty of bridges and boardwalk to help avoid muddy shoes. After about 1-1.5 miles (each .5 miles is marked very clearly) you reach the lower falls, with a picnic area. Turning from there, the trail climbs quite a bit to reach the Middle Falls, which is worth the steep climb.
There are 4 viewing points for the Middle Falls, one at the bottom of it, two along the trail higher up, and another at the top of the Middle Falls. Visiting the Upper Falls is definitely worth the views and the privacy- not many people make the extra effort to see the Upper Falls, which is .75 miles from the Middle Falls and is pretty steep.
After doing this hike, we were glad we followed the advice from the other reviews. We'd also like to leave you with some of our own advice:
1. GO EARLY!!! the great detractor for this hike was the amount of people that head out around 11-2. If you enjoy a secluded trail a 9/10 start time should work.
2. Dont expect trail courtesy- it's just not going to happen with the amount of foreigners, tourists, non-hikers, and rambunctious kids heading out on the trails.
3. Take plenty of water! The drops and climbs will have you sweating in no time and this is not a hike you want to get dehydrated on.
4. Most importantly, we'd like to offer a suggestion on "how" to do the hike. Start by heading to the Lower Falls, check it out, then head to Middle Falls, then visit the viewing area at the very top at Upper Falls. On your return trip, stop and visit the scenic trail right below Upper Falls, then the two viewing areas at the top of Middle Falls. It's easier on the legs and morale to take in the views while standing still on the return trip, rather than making the initial climb much longer.
Hope you enjoy this hike if you brave the crowds. Dogs did very well and we saw tons, but no chances for off-leash fun.