Saturday, October 20, 2012

Hamilton Mountain BDay Hike..1st stop Hardy Falls and Pool of the Gods.

  It is birthday time, so as it has been a tradition since I moved out to the Pacific NW in 2005 to experience a beautiful part of the PacNW. Roughly a three and a half hour drive south from Seattle down I-5 then east on State Highway 84 along the Columbia River Gorge for about 35 miles to Beacon Rock and Hamilton Mountain. I decided to head up for the ~8 mile round trip hike up Hamilton Mountain then over to Beacon Rock (named by Lewis and Clark as they headed west down the Columbia River) for a short 1 mile hike up to the top. The first set of pics are from the trailhead up to Hardy Creek/Falls and Pool of the Gods.
Beacon Rock State Park Headquarters. 
Headquarters and Beacon Rock.  Had to pick up my annual State Park Pass before I headed up to the trailhead.
A great old building.
Where I am headed to...Hamilton Mountain. Looking like a great day with some great  views  of the Columbia River Gorge.
A better view about 1/4 mile on the trail. 
I planned on camping at the campground last night but stayed in Vancouver, WA instead. Now, time to head up. 
I found out there wasn't much of a view especially with the absence of water throughout the summer. 

Luckily, there is a much better view up ahead. 

I nice little foot bridge, too bad the green didn't show up in the pic. 

I wonder how long the old growth log has been in there and how it ever  got to be perfectly placed in this spot. 
A look up past the Pool of the Gods. 

With Pool of the Gods on my left, a look down offers another nice little  pool as well. 

Vertical panoramic with several of the falls in view but without the Pool of the  Gods in  view. But, it is just up and to the right of the railing. 
The trail and bridge going up to Hamilton Mountain. Instead of getting back on the trail and crossing the bridge I decided to do a little scramble down the falls. 
One of the many smaller falls as I am scrambling down back to the trail. 

A calm shallow pool and a small water fall. 

All of the waterfalls seem to be unique in their own particular way. 
Worn beautifully and perfectly throughout the falls. 
All the rock is so smooth. Beautiful.
This place would be beautiful with a little snow or even more water in the springtime. 
Some bright looking moss with accompanies the water and rock.  
Awesome layered rock and waterfall. 
Looking back up to the last main waterfall. 
Me on the bridge with Hardy Falls (kind of) in the background. 
Next blog...part II of Little Hamilton and Hamilton Mountain views!!!
Until next time...
Adventure On, my friends!