Three Falls are Better than One: Wallace Falls State Park, WA

As summer in Seattle comes to a close, we felt the need to take advantage of one of our final {Saturday Perfect Weather} days.  I had my eye on Wallace Falls State Park ever since I saw the photo of the river’s fluffy cascading waters on the Washington Trails Association website.

Located in Goldbar, Washington, off of Highway 2, about 28 mile east of Everett, the drive gave us the perfect traveling distance for Bergen’s morning nap.  We took back roads to make the drive even longer, and to cut out any potential traffic situations.

When we arrived at Wallace Falls, the park was busy, but not unbearable.  We consulted the map, and made a plan to hike the 5.5 mile out and back trail to see the lower, middle, and upper falls.  Since it worked out so well on our last hike, we strapped Bergen onto my back in the Ergo.  We’re thinking he might have some enthusiasm for nature as he looks at the hanging leaves on the trees like they are mobiles, and you have to fight for his attention when he’d rather watch a waterfall.

The trek up to the lower falls was fairly easy.  We followed along the river at points, and had a good view of the rolling water at one of the large bridges.

Things were kicked up a notch in getting to the middle falls.  Steep steps had our muscles working hard, but the trail is well worn, and easy to navigate.  We took in the view of middle falls at both lookouts, and contemplated whether or not to go all the way to upper falls.  Bergen seemed to be enjoying himself, and the bagel chips and licorice had us ready for one last push.

This climb was certainly difficult, but plenty of people were conquering the trail; kids even.  Getting to the upper falls is important.  The middle falls give you a good perspective of the falls as a whole and by far the best view, but at upper falls we saw the entire Skykomish River valley, Olympics in the distance,  and close-ups of the tempting rocky pools.  Some daredevil types ventured out on rocks, others sat for a while just to experience the cascading water and be there.  I wanted so badly to jump into the perfect blue-green water.

Info to Know:

  • 14503 Wallace Lake Road
    Goldbar, WA 98251
  • The cost (if you drive in) is $10 unless you have a Discover Pass ($30).
  • It’s a difficult hike.  Make sure everyone has sturdy shoes.  I wore Keen sandals and was fine, but would have been better off in hiking boots.
  • Taking baby along? You’ll need a sturdy carrier that is comfortable and safe for trekking up steep hills.  No strollers on this trail!
  • Bring plenty of water and snack so you have enough energy to make it to the upper falls.  Water is available at the trail head.
  • If you are not up for hiking all the way to upper falls, it’s still more than worth the trip to the park.  Plenty to explore on lower and middle (the best view anyway).
  • Before you leave, cut off from the trail, and take some time to explore the river.

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9 thoughts on “Three Falls are Better than One: Wallace Falls State Park, WA

    • Well thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it…thinking back to that hike has me wishing for warmer days here in Seattle. It’s going to be a LONG wait now though…

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