"End of the Waterfall Loop" Cascade Locks by glabah

Cascade Locks Travel Guide: 22 reviews and 48 photos

At one time, Cascade Locks was a very important transportation point on the Columbia River. At this spot, a large rapids in the river prevented boats from going farther upstream. Those which operated above Cascade Locks were built there. A primitive portage railroad, at one time powered only by horses but later home of the first steam locomotive in the Pacific Northwest, was the first means to move freight and passengers around the rapids to boats on the upper part of the river.

In 1896, the Cascade Locks were opened, providing the first method of movement of water traffic from the lower part of the river to the middle part of the river. It also gave a name to this little community where the locks were located.

When the Bonneville Dam was constructed in the 1930s, it flooded the former rapids site as well as the former location of the locks on the Columbia River, but the name of the town still remains.

Today, this small community is the most convenient community at the end of the popular historic Columbia River highway loop road that provides access to the various popular waterfalls in the Columbia River Gorge.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Heart of Columbia River Gorge and close to All Recreation Activities there. Native American tribes make freshly cought fish easily available. Has bridge connecting both sides of river.
  • Cons:Very small town, and very limited resources here, and certain things (theatres, for example) simply don't exist.
  • In a nutshell:Great place to visit and in which to base your exploration of both Oregon and Washington sides of the Columbia River Gorge.
  • Last visit to Cascade Locks: Sep 2009
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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