Eagle Creek Trail #440 (Mt. Hood)
This trail enters the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness.
The Eagle Creek Trail #440 is the most popular trail in the Columbia Gorge. It follows Eagle Creek through the forest and along paths carved into basalt cliffs. Eagle Creek Trail offers spectacular viewpoints and waterfalls. On parts of this trail, there are sheer cliffs with no guard rails, so this hike may not be suitable for children, pets, or those afraid of heights. This trail is part of a multi-day loop opportunity which continues into the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness on the Hood River Ranger District.
This trail begins at Eagle Creek Campground on the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area and ends at Wahtum Lake. From Eagle Creek Overlook (120’), the trail climbs gradually southeast following Eagle Creek. After 2 miles the trail reaches spectacular Punch Bowl Falls (500’), where water spills 100 feet into a blue-green pool set in a large grotto. The trail continues following Eagle Creek under heavy forest 1.6 miles to High Bridge (560’), which traverses the gorge 150 feet above the creek. From High Bridge, the trail heads southeast 1.4 miles, enters the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness, and continues 0.4 mile to the junction with Eagle Benson Trail #434. From the junction the trail climbs 0.8 mile to Tunnel Falls (1,240’), where the trail passes through a tunnel behind a shower of falling water. Continuing along Eagle Creek, the trail heads due south 1.6 miles to the junction with Eagle Tanner Trail #433 (1,560’). The trail leaves Eagle Creek at this junction and heads northeast; it climbs around a ridge above East Fork Eagle Creek after 2 miles and begins to turn south. 0.1 mile after turning south, the trail reaches the junction with Indian Springs Trail #435 (2,560’). Turn left (east) to stay on #440 and continue climbing 6 miles to the trail’s end at the junction with the Pacific Crest Trail #2000 near Wahtum Lake (3,800’). Follow #2000 along the south shore of Wahtum Lake to reach the parking area near Wahtum Lake Campground.
In 2017, the Eagle Creek Fire caused extensive damage to this area. The Eagle Creek Trail #440 connects to several other remote, multi-day loop backpacking opportunities in the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness on the Hood River Ranger District. It is also a popular alternative route to the Pacific Crest Trail. However, recovery efforts from the Eagle Creek wildfire are still underway on some of these multi-day loop trail opportunities. Ruckel Creek #403, Tanner Butte #401, Eagle-Tanner #433, and Tanner Cutoff #448 trails remain closed. Please check the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area alerts & notices page for the latest information.
Link to Trail Description and Map (PDF File)
At a Glance
|Current Conditions:||Cleared of fallen trees from Wahtum Lake to 7 1/2 Mile Camp on 6/14/23.
Recovery efforts from the 2017 Eagle Creek wildfire are still underway on some of these multi-day loop trail opportunities. Please check the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area alerts & notices page for the latest information.
|Permit Info:||Wilderness Permits are required when entering Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness. Free permits are self-issued at the Wilderness boundary.|
|Restrictions:||Wilderness restrictions apply. Special Wilderness restrictions apply in Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness. Learn more here.
|Closest Towns:||Cascade Locks, OR|
|Passes:||A valid Recreation Pass is required at Eagle Creek trailhead.|
|Operated By:||Forest Service|
From Portland, OR take I-84 eastbound to Eagle Creek exit # 41 and follow signs to the Eagle Creek Campground.
From Hood River, OR take I-84 westbound to Bonneville Dam exit # 40. Drive under the freeway and join eastbound traffic. After 1 mile take Eagle Creek exit # 41 and follow directions above.
Go to Wahtum Lake to access the south end of this trail.
Please park your car near the day use hosts if you are hiking overnight. It will be a lot more secure there than at the trailhead.
Map showing recreational areas. Map Information
Day HikingEagle Creek Trail offers spectacular viewpoints and waterfalls. On parts of the trail are sheer cliffs with no guard rails, so this hike may not be suitable for children.
|Difficulty Level:||Easy to Intermediate|