Beaver Falls

Olympic National Forest, Washington, USA

About Beaver Falls


Hiking Distance: 1/4 mile round trip; scramble
Suggested Time: 30 minutes

Date first visited: 2011-08-22
Date last visited: 2011-08-22

Waterfall Latitude: 48.09472
Waterfall Longitude: -124.26628

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Beaver Falls was a waterfall we almost gave up on because we had trouble finding it.

It was one of the more obscure waterfalls on our trip to the Olympic Peninsula probably as a result of its elusive nature.

Olympic_Peninsula_155_08222011 - Beaver Falls
Beaver Falls

I’m guessing that this obscurity was in part because there were no signs indicating its presence.

Yet perhaps if this waterfall was a more well-known attraction with more devoted infrastructure to facilitate visitation, then it wouldn’t be so obscure in the first place.

During heavy rain, we actually pulled over at a pair of pullouts before we luckily heard the sound of falling water at the second pullout (see directions below).

That second pullout turned out to be at the top of the Beaver Falls so I suspected that the other pullout was the one that would take me closer to the base of the falls.

Given the rain, I never bothered to entertain the notion of trying to get down to the base of the falls directly from its top.

So in a way, the rain actually helped me find the correct path that led to the base of the Beaver Falls.

Scrambling to the bottom of Beaver Falls

Olympic_Peninsula_163_08222011 - Following this stream along the railing, which ultimately put me on the scrambling path to the bottom of Beaver Falls
Following this stream along the railing, which ultimately put me on the scrambling path to the bottom of Beaver Falls

Speaking of that scrambling path from the first pullout, it rained hard enough to cause an ephemeral stream that I was able to follow towards the scrambling path.

This impromptu creek initially flowed along a guard rail before veering steeply down towards the main creek.

Even though it felt like I was scrambling down a stream that was cascading given the steepness of the terrain, there were enough footholds from a neighboring tree as well as the trail itself to make it down without too much risk to life and limb.

From down at the bottom of the scramble, the view of the Beaver Falls was satisfactory though I’d say this waterfall was probably more for waterfall collectors.

It had a pretty short drop (maybe 30ft or so), but it could potentially be as wide as 80ft when flooded.

Olympic_Peninsula_161_08222011 - Looking down at the impromptu stream that just happened to flow over the scrambling path leading to the bottom of Beaver Falls
Looking down at the impromptu stream that just happened to flow over the scrambling path leading to the bottom of Beaver Falls

I happened to see it as a few segments biased to the left side of the escarpment, and I suspected this was more or less average flow considering it was raining hard during my visit.

However, its base flow came from Beaver Lake which seemed to source this part of Beaver Creek.

The steep path to the base wasn’t for everyone, but I felt it was doable as long as I took my time.

Authorities

Beaver Falls resides in Olympic National Forest near Forks in Clallam County, Washington. It is administered by the USDA Forest Service. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website or Facebook page.

Olympic_Peninsula_149_08222011 - The stream that I followed to Beaver Falls' base
Olympic_Peninsula_150_08222011 - Descending towards the base of Beaver Falls while trying to hold onto trees and get whatever footholds I could find given the terrain's steepness
Olympic_Peninsula_159_08222011 - Looking up at the cascading stream that followed along the scrambling path to the bottom of Beaver Falls
Olympic_Peninsula_162_08222011 - Returning to the unsigned pullout nearest to Beaver Falls after having my fill of the falls

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We visited Beaver Falls while driving from Forks along the US101 towards Burnt Mountain Rd (Hwy 113) on the left.

This turnoff is roughly 13 miles northeast of Forks or around 17 miles west of Fairholm.

Once on Burnt Mountain Rd, we headed north about 2 miles.

The key is to look for a large pullout with a guardrail just north of the Beaver Creek Bridge.

It might help to pay attention to the odometer because the correct pullout is not signed.

If you make it to Beaver Lake, you went too far.

For context, Port Angeles was about 57 miles (over an hour drive) northeast of Forks and 82 miles (or 2.5 hours drive including a ferry ride [so it would take more time than this]) from Seattle.

Fixated on the falls in motion

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Tagged with: olympic, national park, clallam, port angeles, washington, peninsula, waterfall, forks, beaver creek, la push



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Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of the award-winning A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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