White River Falls State Park

This one wasn’t so much a hike as a wander. But a very cool wander through a desert canyon that smelled of warm sage, looked like fall, and was home to two beautiful waterfalls and the ruins of a cool old hydro-power plant. Plus it was lovely to be in the sunshine after spending the previous day traipsing around in the shade under north facing cliffsides.

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There’s an overlook off the parking lot with a view of the main White River Falls, so named because of the water’s milky appearance which is apparently a result of glacial sediments. Stay here and enjoy a sunny picnic, or continue down-river and down to the river. Try to ignore the fact that you’ll have to climb up all those stairs later, and enjoy the spooky old buildings and machinery at the river’s edge only about a quarter mile away.

There’s a nice little spot down here to throw rocks or put feet in the water, or continue on over the unmarked boot paths down to lower Celestial Falls. It’s like a sage forest down here, so magical. And on my visit, I accidentally flushed a herd of deer out of their thicket as I tromped by being all human and stuff. It was cool to watch them bounding straight up the canyon.

At this point I wandered a bit more, but the ‘trail’ got a tad sketchy as it started to wrap around farther down the canyon. I decided the day was young, and there was no need to accidentally kill myself just to find out what was around the bend. And yes, the stairs were still waiting for me when I returned.

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