Waterfalls for Days
Wallace Falls State Park – Woody Trail
- GPS file here (or click above for more hike details and other file types)
- Out and back trail
- Park Map & Park Website
If you’re looking for a nice day hike or you’re in the mood to go chasin’ waterfalls, this is the place to go! Wallace Falls State Park is known for having 9 waterfalls in the park, the largest being 265 ft. Being only and hour away from the Seattle area, this is an easy place to get to and great when you’re short on time.
The Woody Trail is well maintained and good for families with a bathroom in the beginning, good size parking lot, markings along the trail, and a picnic area midway through the trail. All of the lookout points have sturdy rails so you can get a good look and not worry about slipping off a cliff. The elevation gain is fairly gradual most of the way with a slightly steeper climb going from the Middle Falls to the Upper Falls, but nothing major.
Most of the trail is an easy walk without too many rough spots allowing you to take in the regional Cascade flora and fauna. The amount of moss clinging to the trees makes it feel like a scene straight out of Lord of the Rings! And not too mention the river following the trail makes for a nice soundscape of rushing water and cascades crashing.
Around a half-mile in, you’ll come to a fork dividing the hiker only trail and the Railroad Grade which is a bike accessible path. The Railroad Grade path is a longer trail the leads to Wallace Lake and eventually Jay Lake. For this hike we’ll hang a right and carry onto the Woody Trail.
There are a few river crossings that have nice bridges with railings that can make for great photo ops. After spending some time bushwhacking a little and scrambling out on a downed tree for a photo in the middle of the river, I carried on.
Two miles in you’ll reach the Picnic area at the Lower Falls, which offers a nice shelter with a few picnic tables and a nice view of the Lower Falls. Take in the view for a few minutes, or hang out for lunch, but eventually walk on for less than half mile for the more impressive views of the Middle Falls, which I found to be the best on the trail. Around the Middle Falls there is a look out point where you can peer over the edge to see the Wallace River 200 ft below and looking out further across the valley you might be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the Olympics on a clear day. All I saw was rain and fog, but it was still beautiful!
Although the Middle Falls is the most impressive, it’s still worth carrying on along the steepest half mile of the trail up to the Upper Falls, even if for nothing other than a good workout. The Upper Falls consists of 5 falls all together, but only two are visible from the trail, the 30 and 65 ft drops pictured below.
I hit the trail around 8am so the trail was empty on the way up, but it started to fill up with larger groups around 11. Keep in mind this was a rainy day in the mid 30s, so on a nice day it’s sure to be packed.
Have fun out there!
- Discover Pass (available at Wallace Falls parking lot) is required
- Check the weather and wear appropriate gear