Monday, November 29, 2010

Starvation Creek Falls

   While driving through the gorge on interstate 84 once, I noticed some concrete structures on a cliff side.  I didn't give it too much thought, just that it must have been some remnants of the old highway.
   A few months passed, and I found myself driving on the same stretch of 84, and looked for the structures again, but never saw them.  Every time since then I have made it a point to find those structures again and maybe find out exactly what they were/are.  This post is about one of those times.
   I was again on I-84 over the summer with a few hours of time to spare, so I decided to pull off at a few of the historical sites along the interstate in the hopes of finding a plaque or info board on the old highway.  The stop was Starvation Creek State Park Picnic Area.
    It had a section of hwy 30 that was closed to traffic and only open for walking and biking.  There were a handful of people at the stop, but only a few on the old highway.  The scenery around the road was peaceful and interesting to look at, and at some points made me wish it was open to drive on.
    I walked along the path for what seemed like to me to be a few miles (really though I think it ended up being 3/4 mi.) before ending up in a small clearing in sight of the interstate.  I decided to turn around after coming to the conclusion that this wanst the particular stretch I was hoping it would be and decided to check out the water fall.

   I walked back, and up to the water fall following the signs, but found that the path didn't go all the way up to the falls.  It ended at a stone wall still quiet far from the fall, but with an adequate view of it still.  This didn't stop me at all.
   I climbed over the stone wall and made my way towards the fall.  I could easily tell that I wasn't the only one to do it either as  there was a path worn through the foliage leading to the falls.
   The walk was easy up until a small picturesque waterfall where I had to hop from one slippery stone to another.  I somehow managed to make it across without getting my shoes wet, but not before taking a few quick pics.

   It was only a short walk uphill to the main falls.

I also noticed a few old concrete things.  I don't know what they were, but there were some old broken pipes  laying around so I think they might have been some sort of irrigation?

   I left the falls area when I was mostly satisfied (I still had a long drive ahead of me) and was almost eaten by a couple of dogs running around.  The dogs owners were walking up the paved path and called the dogs back, and I don't think I was ever in any danger.  They apologized and I told them not to worry about it cause I like dogs.
   Starvation Creek Falls turned out to be a pleasant surprise.  Even though what I originally set out to find didn't pan out, I did discover what I think are one of the coolest and most underrated falls in the gorge.  I plan to stop here again in the winter to see what its like iced over.  I'll be sure to add photos of it when I go.

Although I wasn't born in Oregon, I don't remember living anywhere else.  Growing up in Eastern Oregon (more east than Bend), and currently living along the I-5 corridor,  I feel I know more of Oregon than most of its residents, and I have grown to love pretty much all of it!  I really enjoy driving and exploring and want to share what I have seen.
[Pic is Wolf Creek Reservoir - Union County ©catapillar1]