Big Cougar Again
Saturday, November 16, 2002

Scott took Allen and Ellen to the Big Cougar by way of the Multnomah Creek Trail.
This is the easy way compared to the Elevator Shaft that Colin, Adam and Emily
scrambled up on July 13. But it was a good way to go on a cold and rainy day!

Here we are with Multnomah Falls behind us. At 620 feet it is the second
longest falls in the U.S. and quite a tourist attraction.

You can see it was pretty foggy, but not raining too much when we started out.

The trail to the top of the falls is paved with asphalt the whole way.
It gets lots and lots of foot traffic.

A view across the Columbia Gorge to Archer Mountain.


With the rain holding off, we decided not to take the side trail to look down from
the top of the falls, but to press on up Multnomah Creek. The trail is rougher
here (although well-maintained) and the creek is very picturesque.

There are several pretty waterfalls as you go up the creek. This is Wiesendanger Falls.

The trail crosses the creek on this bridge. Allen and Scott stopped
to reconfigure some rain gear. It had begun to shower on and off.

From the bridge you can look down on the log timbers of the old
bridge, with young trees growing out of them.

In fact, you can look right down through the bridge deck,
as it is made from narrow boards on end, spaced to drain.

We left the main trail to follow the "high water trail" up the side of the canyon.
At the junction with the Larch Mountain trail, this old sign was nearly illegible.

This part of the trail to Big Cougar is pretty hard to follow as it snakes through the woods.

Once up in the Multnomah Basin, however, the going is pretty easy.

The trail out to the Big Cougar takes you past a large rock outcrop
we called the "False Cougar."

It's a little hairy on this tiny ledge...

...and on up to the top of the Big Cougar.

I climbed all the way up here for this view???!!! Look hard, you can just
make out the other side of the Columbia Gorge through the fog.

We went back by way of the Trails Club lodge. No one was around, so
we had our lunch on their porch. It had begun to rain in earnest by this
time, and we were fairly wet. We enjoyed sitting out the storm in
relatively dry comfort. Tuna salad sandwiches tasted really good here.

Going out this way was longer but much easier than the way we came in.
It's raining, can you tell from Scott and Allen's headgear?

Back down the Multnomah Creek Trail.
Scott and Allen are standing in the "Dutch tunnel"
by Wiesendanger Falls. Multnomah Creek has way
more water in it after the storm than on our way up.

It's really too dark for a photo but we did stop to look down from the
top of Multnomah Falls on the way back.

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