Angel's Rest Trail (#415)


Area Status: Open
Sign and trail leading into the woods at Angels Rest trailhead

This classic hike is best known for being a good workout that rewards with a spectacular view of Portland. It is just beginning to recover from the 2017 Eagle Creek Fire, and just reopened to public use in November 2018. 

The trail climbs uphill at an average trail grade of 10-15% for about half a mile before reaching the top of Coopey Falls, a 150-175 foot horsetail waterfall, where a footbridge crosses the creek. The trail then winds uphill with a series of switchbacks for 1.6 miles -- through an area scarred by an earlier fire in the 1990s -- before reaching the ridge crest. Use caution while hiking these switchbacks, and do not kick rocks on the trail, as this could trigger a landslide or injure hikers below. Please don't shortcut the switchbacks, as this damages native plants and leads to damaging erosion.

Turn left at a junction for a famous -- and fabulous -- view. Use extreme caution at the steep cliff edge, as there have been tragic accidents along this part of the trail. 

Continue east 2 miles to Wahkeena Springs and Wahkeena Falls Trail #420.

At a Glance

Fees: No Fee
Usage: Heavy
Restrictions:
  • Motor vehicles and bicycles are prohibited.
  • Fires not allowed within 200 feet of trail.
  • Dogs must be on leash.
Closest Towns: Troutdale, OR
Water: No
Restroom: No
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Parking:

Parking fills quickly during spring and summer. Do not park outside fog lines or in areas marked no parking, as cars will be cited and towed. This is a heavily congested area, so carpool if possible.


Directions:

From Portland, OR: Travel east on Interstate 84; turn off at Bridal Veil exit #28 and onto the Historic Columbia River Highway. The trailhead is at the junction of the Historic Columbia River Highway and East Bridal Veil Road.

From Cascade Locks, OR: Travel west on Interstate 84; turn off at Ainsworth State Park exit #35 and follow the Historic Columbia River Highway for 7.1 miles to the trailhead.

Parking Area: 

An information board and parking area.


Activities

Day Hiking

This trail has a gentle grade as it climbs, and is best known for its view of Portland, but it does have exposed sections that can be dangerous. It climbs through an area that experienced a wildfire in 1991 and evidence of the burn can still be seen. Expect crowds, especially during spring and summer and keep your dog on leash, for everyone's safety (including the dog's).

Backpacking

This is not an ideal backpacking area due to its crowds, but it does connect with more remote trails. Plan your campsite locations carefully with an updated map, and be forewarned that there are unmarked "user trails" in the area which can make navigation tricky. Most area trails were impacted by a 2017 wildfire, which makes navigation even tricker and means there is unstable ground and hazard trees off-trail. Pay close attention to your location on the map when you arrive at trail junctions to avoid being lost, as this has been an area with many Search and Rescues and the occasional tragedy. 

Viewing Plants

The area has wildflower displays, which peak in May, that include blue-eyed grass, star-flowered Smiliacina, and Trillium at lower levels. Due to a 2017 fire, and an earlier fire in the 1990s, the area has the type of open, sunny conditions that promote native wildflowers.

General Info:

Safety Information

Due to a 2017 fire, slopes here are especially unstable and fire-weakened trees may fall for up to a decade later. Avoid the area during high winds and heavy rains, as slopes become susceptible to landslides and falling trees. 


Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities

Highlights

Location

 
  Area/Length : 
4.8 miles

  Elevation : 
100 - 1600