It has been four years since I’ve been to see my old friend, Feather Falls. I figured it was well past time to make a visit.

Why? Well one reason was I wanted to make a video of the Feather Falls hike. I accomplished this successfully, and it will be ready for viewing sometime in January. I started making videos again, and this time they are new and exciting and high quality, so if you have not seen them yet, please check them out and follow waterfallmadman on youtube. I appreciate the support. I have a brand new one being released next weekend. Do not miss it!

So anyhow, I arrived at the Feather Falls trailhead before sunrise. There were some people camping here (in the campground). The weird thing is that one of the cars had Christmas lights on (inside it). It kind of freaked me out seeing that so early in the morning. I am kidding. Sort of. I was not expecting to see anyone there. Definitely not that.

I started my hike in the dark. I had a couple hours to make it to the waterfall before the sun would get to it. I had plenty of time, but not enough to dilly daddle too much. I hiked quickly.

Frey Creek had pretty good flow in it. This is a good sign and made me happy. Even though we are in a long dry spell and even though we have not had a lot of rain yet this winter, the waterfalls are flowing already. They did not need very much precipitation to get started this winter. I think that a lot of people do not realize this (that the waterfalls are flowing already). In some areas, though, such as the coast, they are going to need a lot more water of course. I pray that this dry spell ends soon and we have a good winter.

One thing that did not make me happy: the ticks!!! They were everywhere, just dripping off the grasses along the trail. This is the second hike already this winter where I’ve seen a lot of ticks. It is only early December. They should not even be out yet! I am predicting this is going to be a horrendous year for ticks. I think it is because of the very wet winter we had last year, due to that, the ticks are going to be awful this year. Last year, remember, the ticks were not very bad at all. This is my theory. Whatever the reason, they are already bad bad bad this year and I do not like it. The good thing is that the Feather Falls trail is very wide and it was mostly easy to avoid getting lurched upon by the little buggers.

Before too long, I arrived at the Feather Falls viewpoint. The waterfall was booming! Well, perhaps not exactly booming, but it was flowing strong and it was awesome. Feather Falls never fails to disappoint. It is truly magnificent. Of course we all know by now the true height of Feather Falls, that it is 410 ft. high and not 640 ft. high. Of course we all know who is responsible for that correct measurement. I do not really see anyone using the old incorrect height anymore, but when I do see people using the correct height, they never credit yours truly. Oh cry me a river, I know. Anyway, I wanted to re-measure the height this time around. I only measured it the one time and there is some error involved when doing this. I am happy to report that my new measurement was very close to 410 ft., in fact it was so close that I am confident to keep the 410 ft. figure as the true height of the waterfall.

I thought about trying to get down to the bottom of the waterfall. That is all. I just thought about it. The main thing that stopped me from trying: the poison oak looked horrendous down there. I just did not feel like dealing with the oak today. My friend Rob the mountain goat almost made it down to the bottom awhile ago, but was stopped mostly by poison oak so I knew it would be bad the entire 410 ft. to the bottom. I could see it would be bad, so that is enough thinking about that. I went to the top of the waterfall instead and took a timeout inside the cage at the brink of the falls. It really is a bit crazy getting into the cage. The rock is smooth and very slippery. One little missed step and you are a goner. People have gone bye bye here in the past. I actually did slip on it one time, but I was already inside the case and so was in a safe spot. Still, just that little slip freaks you out. I still had to climb back out of the cage afterwards. And then I did it all a second time with my video camera. Don’t even consider trying this stunt if the rocks are at all wet.

I hiked back to the trail loop junction and sat down on the bench and ate my lunch. As I was sitting there eating, I heard the sound of a plane. It got louder and louder and louder and louder. I stood up, looking around for it. Then I saw it. A jet screamed by, flying very low, and clearly faster than the speed of sound. Boom! I heard the sonic boom as it went overhead. It was so very loud! Wow. It seemed to me that it was flying straight up the Fall River Canyon, and right over Feather Falls. It would have been absolutely awesome to have been at the overlook at the time it flew over, although perhaps it would have destroyed my ear drums. Nonetheless, I regret not eating my lunch at the overlook. Ah well.






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