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Wynoochee Falls

Wynoochee Falls is one of the few punchbowl-form falls of our area, and where the falls drops to an idyllic swimming hole on the river.
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Location

Upstream of Wynoochee Lake at the closed Wynoochee Lake Campground. Route finding skills on sparsley marked forest roads are a necessity.

Travel Instructions

From US Highway 12 at Montesano, turn north on Wynoochee Valley Road (1 mile west of Montesano) Drive approximately 35 miles on the Wynoochee Valley Road (also called FR 22) to a major intersection with FR2270 just below the Wynoochee dam. Drive straight ahead on FR 2270 approximately 8.3 miles to Wynoochee Falls Campground (closed at last report). Hike any of the several trails to the falls on the west side of the campground on the river. Alternatively, from US Highway 101 north of Aberdeen, travel the Donkey Creek Road (FR 22) approximately 22.3 miles to just below the Wynoochee Dam and connect with FR 2270, taking a left turn at the intersection traveling 8.3 miles to Wynoochee Falls Campground.

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Notes

This is a long drive, partly on gravel roads, requiring route finding skills, but well worth the trip to view a low, two-tier, punchbowl-form falls of 25 feet that is more or less an all season viewing falls. Three or even four small stream channels separately tumble down jagged rock and flow into the crystal clear pool at the base of the falls during lower flows. It is most impressive in the rainy season or spring runoff. Lake Wynoochee and the Dam alone are worth the trip.

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10 Responses to “Wynoochee Falls”

  1. Jessica says:

    This is a great short hike and beautiful falls. There is another waterfall close by not listed here which should always be hiked to the same day :) When you come to the gate 2 miles before Wynoochee Falls turn left over the bridge and then take the next left and stay right. . Look on your right for a marked/unmarked trail. Follow about 1/2 mile to Maidenhair falls. This trail keeps going back to the lake and there’s a beautiful view of Maidenhair falls from a bridge that crosses the stream at this location.

    • waterfalls says:

      WOW! Jessica. Thanks for sharing info about another waterfall. We will go scouting it next time we are out. Thanks for the directions! Do you have any photos of Maidenhair Falls?

  2. Kelly Anderson says:

    The falls are indeed lovely. The pools surrounding the falls are especially clear and enticing. However, it is extremely important to note that you should not swim in the pools anywhere near the falls. As a local of 40+ years there have been a few visitors that have sadly died in or near the falls – including a victim just this summer. This is a remote area with no cell service or emergency services. Have a great time, but please be safe!

    • waterfalls says:

      Hi Kelly. Thanks for the “local” input. Yes, the wonderful places we have here to visit and experience in the wilderness here are just that – “wilderness”. Use some common sense, stay safe and enjoy the majesty of our wilderness places.

  3. Tony Tennant says:

    Found this magic place completely at random wandering up from my stay at Ocean city ’06, came to see the rainforest being Texan and wanted to run the upper roads, went back three other occasions. This is an exceptional site, was long ago said to be a well-known camp spot, by a local plumber in Hoquiam/Aberdeen. (too many accidents) My brother, friends and I went when water was very low and it is was chilly, we jumped in all afternoon until shadows grew too long.. the chill effect was amazing. But be warned, it is not an easy trek up face or the jump either.

  4. Beth says:

    This is one of our family favorites for camping at the Lake and then exploring – kids ages 6, 5 and 2. The lake is a great place to swim (water temp 71 degress) and the waterfall is fine if you are up for quite a bit colder water temperature. Our family can easily spend 2-3 hours just playing along the riverbank – crossing it back and forth – and looking for fish or building rock structures and rerouting the water. The scramble to the top of the falls is well worth the effort and easily done even by little ones with a bit of help. Also, the road is NOW paved except the last 6 miles to the campground and then the 8 miles of dirt road in good condition to the waterfall.

  5. Bob says:

    I just saw the fall and it was well worth the trip. I even enjoyed the cool water.

  6. Rachel says:

    Just a “foot note”… there is a gate on the road about 2 miles before the falls that is locked between October and April. It makes for a nice bike ride, or additional hike. :)

  7. Rachel says:

    This is a beautiful area with many trails through the old growth forest. The river carves it’s way through a lush green canyon as it makes it’s way to the lake and beyond. However, the last time I was here, there was soap floating in the water from campers upstream. PLEASE don’t pollute!!

  8. Waterfall Lover says:

    Love the pool and setting of this falls.