Starvation Creek Falls

Columbia River Gorge / Hood River, Oregon, USA

About Starvation Creek Falls


Hiking Distance: 1/2-mile round trip
Suggested Time: 30 minutes

Date first visited: 2009-03-29
Date last visited: 2009-03-29

Waterfall Latitude: 45.6873
Waterfall Longitude: -121.68848

Starvation Creek Falls felt like one of those obscure waterfalls that probably wouldn’t get quite the publicity and notoriety that other roadside attractions would get in the Columbia River Gorge area.

Perhaps it was because most visitors wouldn’t go far enough east (this one sat between Cascade Locks and Hood River).

Columbia_River_Gorge_110_03292009 - Starvation Creek Falls
Starvation Creek Falls

Or, they might have gotten a serious case of waterfall fatigue on their waterfalling binge given the plethora of waterfalls here.

Nonetheless, this very tall waterfall was quite attractive (said to be about 186ft tall), and definitely worth a stop.

Experiencing Starvation Creek Falls

After leaving our rental car at the large car park immediately accessed from the offramp from the I-84 freeway, we then went on a short 1/4-mile walk that took us closer to the Starvation Creek Falls.

We couldn’t see this waterfall from the freeway, which might be yet another reason why this falls seemed relatively obscure compared to others in the Columbia River Gorge.

In any case, we encountered a trail junction right before a footbridge over Starvation Creek.

Columbia_River_Gorge_105_03292009 - Looking towards the spur trail leading closer to the Starvation Creek Falls
Looking towards the spur trail leading closer to the Starvation Creek Falls

The branch on the right led us briefly uphill alongside Starvation Creek to the waterfall itself.

We didn’t bother pursuing the branch on the left.

Around the base of the Starvation Creek Falls, we noticed a couple of picnic tables here, which would’ve made for a pleasant little spot to gawk at the waterfall while having a snack.

However, we were here early in the morning immediately after the weather started to calm down so it was a bit cold and early to be engaging in such an activity.

From the picnic area and the trail leading to it, we noticed that there always seemed to be some degree of overgrowth or branches protruding onto our line of sight of the waterfall.

Columbia_River_Gorge_124_03292009 - This was perhaps the most contextual look at Starvation Creek Falls that I could get even with the mossy rock obstruction in the middle of this photo
This was perhaps the most contextual look at Starvation Creek Falls that I could get even with the mossy rock obstruction in the middle of this photo

We also kept encountering a mossy rock that blocked out our view of the bottom of the falls.

And even with maneuvering around for a better view, we kept encountering other tree obstacles getting in the way.

So we never really felt we had a nice clean look at the Starvation Creek Falls and its fronting cascades.

Finally, there was another short spur trail on the other side of the creek after crossing the bridge.

This path also led upstream but was a bit narrower and rougher, and I’d say the views were different but not any better than the ones described above.

Authorities

Starvation Creek Falls resides in the Starvation Creek State Park, which is within the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area near Hood River in Hood River County, Oregon. It is administered by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website.

Columbia_River_Gorge_108_03292009 - Made it to Starvation Creek Falls. Notice the tree on the right side where its roots made it seem like the tree was doing a tip toe.
Columbia_River_Gorge_115_03292009 - Julie checking out Starvation Creek Falls though we never really bothered to get beyond that mossy rock for a cleaner view of the waterfall

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Starvation Creek State Park sat about 55 miles east of Portland along I-84.

While heading east on the I-84, the well-signed exit is about 10 miles east of Cascade Locks.

Columbia_River_Gorge_103_03292009 - The parking lot for Starvation Creek State Park, when we showed up on a morning after a storm had just cleared in late March 2009
The parking lot for Starvation Creek State Park, when we showed up on a morning after a storm had just cleared in late March 2009

The off ramp goes right into a large parking lot. Therefore, only eastbound traffic on the I-84 has access to this car park area.

If you’re coming from the opposite direction (west) from Hood River, then you’ll have to head west on the I-84 for roughly 11 miles to the exit 51.

Then, you’d go under the freeway and get back on the I-84 going east for the next 3.5 miles to the Starvation Creek Rest Area.

Sweep from bottom to top from the other side of the stream

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Tagged with: cascade locks, hood river, columbia river gorge, mt hood, mount hood, starvation creek, state park, oregon, waterfall, pacific northwest



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About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of 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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