Lower Cascade Falls

RATING - 30.0

VR - 4 (Med/Sm) HR - 5.5 SR - 8/20


DIFFICULTY - Fairly Difficult

LOCATION - Olga Area

TYPE - Cascades

HEIGHT - 125'

WIDTH - 15'

DIRECTIONS - Take the ferry to Orcas Island. Upon disembarking, turn left and drive along the road for around 25 minutes until you enter Moran State Park. After passing Cascade Lake, take the right fork in the road towards the town of Olga. A mile or so after leaving the state park, you will see a big water tower on the right side of the road. Shortly after, the road will cross over Cascade Creek. The falls are off to the left-hand side of the road. Park at a nearby bike turnout and get down to the creek however you can.

Most visitors to Orcas Island are familiar with the 5 small waterfalls along Cascade Creek in Moran State Park. What most people don't know is that a similar series of falls occurs further downstream near the town of Olga. This section of the creek features 4 small falls, each with a unique character. While exploring the area, I found a very nice trail above the gorge that provides good views of two of the four falls, but I have no idea where the trail begins or ends (I'll have to find out next time). The falls works like this: The first tier is a series of cascades that are around 30' tall. The next falls drops about 15' over a 15' wide ledge, turns 90 degrees to its right, and drops another 15' in a constricted chute. The third falls is a slide of around 40' tall that drops right next to the vertical face of the gorge. Finally, the fourth drop is a double tiered punchbowl that then splits in two and drops one more time.