Upper Andesite Falls

RATING - 16.0

VR - 4.0 (M/S) HR - 2.0 SR - 8/20


DIFFICULTY - Extremely Difficult

LOCATION - Mt. Baker Rec Area

TYPE - Cascades

HEIGHT - 44'

WIDTH - 15'


GPS - N 48 44.124', W 121 47.953'

DIRECTIONS - No directions provided. Dangerous access.

The Sandy Creek Basin is one of the most desolate, rugged, and most difficult to access locations on all of Mt. Baker. However, the area is also home to a plethora of waterfalls and some of the most unique and amazing geology on the entire mountain. Three major streams flow out of the Squak Glacier in the area and each one contains multiple waterfalls along their courses.

The unofficially named Andesite Creek is, for some reason, quite a bit lusher than the other two, which contain virtually no vegetation. Small amounts of green pop up along Andesite Creek and there are some flowers in the area as well. The creek contains three notable waterfalls, this one being the smallest of the three. Upper Andesite Falls drops over two tiers, 20' and 11', with 13' of boulder cascades in between. It's not super impressive, but for some reason I find the splashes of green in the midst of the rugged, grey canyon to be really cool. There's no reason to come just to see this waterfall, but luckily there are two more impressive ones just downstream. I believe there is another waterfall a little upstream from this one that looks much bigger but I haven't seen it yet.