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TravelBuddy

Lower Lewis Falls In Washington

๐Ÿ“

๐Ÿ“ŒThere are over 3,000 catalogued waterfalls in the U.S. state of Washington ๐ŸŒฒ, according to the World Waterfall Database ๐ŸŒŠ. This is more than any other U.S. state and includes Colonial Creek Falls, the tallest waterfall in the continental United States and the tallest in any U.S. National Park, at 2,568 feet in height โ›ฐ๏ธ. The second tallest is Johannesburg Falls (not named after the South Africa City, but after the names of historical settlers). Its total height is 2,465 feet ๐ŸŒŠ.

#Hiking #nature #beautiful #travel

Discovering the Hidden Gem of Lower Lewis Falls in Washington

Located in the heart of the Pacific Northwest, Washington State is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, with numerous waterfalls scattered throughout its lush landscape. Among the most hidden and yet awe-inspiring is the Lower Lewis Falls, a breathtaking waterfall tucked away in the Olympic National Forest.

Getting There

The journey to Lower Lewis Falls begins in the quaint town of Quilcene, nestled along the Hood Canal. From here, take the Quilcene River Road, a winding scenic route that follows the river of the same name. The road gradually gives way to the Olympic National Forest, where the terrain becomes increasingly rugged. After approximately 10 miles, arrive at the Lower Lewis Falls Trailhead, marked by a small parking area and an information kiosk.

The Hike

The moderately difficult 2-mile round-trip hike to Lower Lewis Falls commences from the trailhead and follows the Quilcene River as it winds its way upstream. The trail is well-maintained, with occasional boardwalks and log bridges crossing the river. As the hike progresses, the sound of rushing water grows louder, signaling the approach to the waterfall.

The Falls

Just as the trail begins to flatten, the majestic Lower Lewis Falls comes into view, plummeting 60 feet down a sheer granite face. The falls are at their peak in the spring and early summer, when snowmelt from the surrounding mountains swells the Quilcene River, creating an impressive display of power and beauty.

Surrounding the falls are a few large boulders, allowing visitors to sit and take in the full majesty of the scene. To the left of the falls, a series of smaller cascades can be seen, adding to the overall waterplay. In the spring, wildflowers blooming in the surrounding forest complement the vibrant colors of the falls, making the hike a photographer’s dream come true.

Wildlife and Recreation

The Lower Lewis Falls area is teeming with wildlife, including black bears, marmots, and deer. Birdwatchers will appreciate the opportunity to spot species such as eagles, osprey, and kingfishers. Anglers can try their luck in the Quilcene River, which is stocked with rainbow trout and other fish species.

During the warmer months, the falls and surrounding area offer a variety of recreational activities, including camping, swimming, and picnicking. Due to the remote location, however, visitors should be prepared with food, water, and emergency supplies, and plan accordingly.

Conservation and Access

The Lower Lewis Falls Trail is managed by the US Forest Service, which has implemented measures to reduce the impact of human activity on the delicate ecosystem. Visitors are asked to respect this fragile environment by staying on the trail, not littering, and practicing Leave No Trace principles.

Please note that the trail can become impassable during periods of high rain or snowmelt, so visitors are advised to check current conditions and forecasts before embarking on their adventure.

Conclusion

Lower Lewis Falls, while not as well-known as some of Washington’s more prominent waterfalls, offers a unique and unforgettable experience for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike. Its remote location, stunning scenery, and abundant wildlife make it a must-visit destination for anyone traveling through the Olympic National Forest. By respecting the natural environment and taking the time to appreciate this hidden gem, visitors can enjoy the beauty of Lower Lewis Falls for years to come.

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