For the first installment of our Flashback Friday trips we take a look back at our trip to Orcas Island. To celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary in June 2014, we decided to getaway for the weekend and do some whale watching. So we dropped Catarina and Molly off with family and took the ferry from Anacortes to Orcas Island.
We stayed at the Rosario Resort, and one of the many things we did that weekend was a beautiful, short hike to Cascade Falls inside of Moran State Park.
Moran State Park has five lakes and more than 30 miles of hiking trails, though our hike was probably no more than 3.5 miles roundtrip.
We parked at the Cascade Lake South End campground, and after taking some photos of the stunning lake we found the trail near camping spot 1 and headed uphill into the woods.
The hike was moderately steep at the beginning, as you had to climb up the initial foothills through old growth forest, and next to a bubbling creek.
You eventually break free of the heavy canopy of the forest and enter some open space, before returning to old growth forest.
After about 1.5 miles you come to Cascade Falls, which isn’t the biggest waterfall we’ve ever seen, but it is easily one of our favorites. The entire area is just so wild. As you walk up the stream to the falls, there are giant trees that have been blown down over the stream, giving the area a true Western Washington feel.
The day was even more special for us because we did not see or hear another person on our entire hike. A true escape into the wild.
If you ever find yourself on Orcas Island, you must do this hike – and if for some reason you don’t feel like doing the hike we did, you can just be a lame tourist and park in the Cascade Falls parking lot and do a 10-minute walk downhill to the overlook and view the falls that way.
Believe me, though, doing the longer hike is worth it.