Palouse Falls Palouse Falls

Embark on Palouse Falls: 6 Thrilling Adventures Await

Palouse Falls, also known as Aput Aput, is situated within the Palouse Falls State Park on the Palouse river.

The Palouse waterfall is about 6 km upriver and converges with the Snake River in southeast Washington in the United States of America.

The name Aput Aput for Palouse waterfall is named by the Palouse Indians, meaning “Falling Water.” It is the certified waterfall of Washington and is a popular and must-see destination in the United States.

Geology of the Palouse Fall

  • The Palouse waterfall drops roughly 200 feet, and the ravine of the waterfall is almost 400 feet in depth.
  • It exposes a large cross unit of the Columbia River Basalt Group.
  • The Palouse waterfalls and the ravines surrounding the waterfall were formed when the Missoula floods dominated the ancient Palouse River’s south valley walls.
  • The water flow was sidetracked from the Snake River’s current course by the corrosion of a new river channel.
  • The ancient Palouse River ran through the Washtucna Coulee, now a dry river channel to the Columbia River. 
  • Palouse waterfalls are the last active ones imprinted over 14,000 years ago during the Ice Age.

The Palouse Falls look dreamy, magical, and breathtaking in the changing light.

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Photo by Michael Denning on Unsplash

The Palouse Falls State Park features hanging flood-created coulees, interlinked plunge pools, rock benches, scablands, potholes, and cataracts. The Palouse Falls State Park is located at Palouse falls and protects the beautiful scenic area.

How To Get To Palouse 

  • You must head east toward Spokane/Yakima and continue on the road for almost 30 miles from Ellensburg.
  • You have to travel for another 54 miles and then reach a town named Washtucna, known as the Gateway to Palouse waterfalls.
  • Furthermore, driving through Washtucna by turning right onto Main Street would be best.
  • You need to drive southwest on Main Street for almost 7 miles and then enter Franklin County.
  • You will start to notice the Palouse Falls State Park and then go through the highway for another 9 to 10 miles to reach Palouse Falls Road.
  • Drive a further 2.5 miles and enter an uneven road to the Washington state parks.

Best Time To Visit Palouse 

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Photo by Toan Chu on Unsplash
  • You can make a trip to Palouse Falls all through the four seasons. It looks splendid and amazing irrespective of the water being frozen, high or low.
  • However, I think the best time to visit Palouse Falls and the Palouse Falls State Park is April, May, June, and early July because the waterfall has the heaviest flow during this time of the year. 
  • The Palouse Falls State Park is open every day from 6:30 A.M until sunset

Features Of The Palouse State Park

  • The Palouse Falls State park covers an area of 94 acres and is an ideal place for bird spotting and picnics.
  • Another viewpoint is at the end of the informative path and tells a story of the isolated canyon and the canyon walls.
  • The highest viewpoint is the Fryxell Overlook which offers a comprehensive scenic view of the Palouse River Canyon and the Palouse waterfalls.

The tourists should be ready to face an isolated but adventurous experience as there are no phone services at the state park. The staffs and volunteers are also not available all the time. You must be smart to travel and experience the park’s beauty at your own risk.

Conveniences At The Palouse Falls State Park

  • The parking area has facilities of vault toilets, and water is available from April to October.
  • The park has a picnic area with sheltered tables and a fire pit. Moreover, there are 15 more unsheltered picnic tables.
  • There are also 11 campsites for campers, and one is ADA-accessible.

Entry Fees And Pass For Palouse State Park

  • To visit the Palouse State park and the waterfall, you must have a Discover Pass, and it should be displayed in the car you are travelling. You can use a debit or credit card to buy the Discover Pass from an automatic pass station in the parking area.
  • The day pass costs around 10 US dollars, and a yearly pass costs around 30 US dollars.
  • However, if you enter the park without a Discover Pass, you will be given a fine of 99 US dollars.

Things To Do At Palouse

The Palouse river and the Palouse state park have many things to offer tourists. The park provides various adventurous and fun activities, making it an ideal place for adventurous and experimental people.

1. Camping

One of the fun and exciting things you can do near Palouse waterfalls is camping. The tent camping area has 11 tent sites for camping. Among the 11 tent site, one place has ADA accessibility. Additionally, a pit toilet is also available.

However, since the camping ground is heavily crowded, other good campgrounds are also in the area.

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Photo by Tommy Lisbon on Unsplash

2. Hiking

The trail Palouse is well paved, short, and also has accessibility for ADA. The site is family-friendly and safe. The beautiful views of Palouse waterfalls and the surrounding landscape are scenic and breathtaking.

However, all other trails are closed beyond the viewpoint trail, which is 0.1 mile. The other tracks are rough and steep with uneven rocks, thus making the pathway difficult. The area is also prone to snakes. The hikers must be careful and make their best judgment while hiking.

3. Kayaking

There is no direct access from Palouse Park to the Palouse River. However, experienced paddlers can go kayaking from Lyons Ferry State Park to the Palouse River. The distance from the Lyon Ferry State Park to Palouse River is almost 5 to 6 miles.

It is advisable not to go to the plunge pool and only kayak with experienced and professional paddles. The water current from the waterfall is awfully strong.

4. Capture Photos 

It is a must-see piece of fun art on your route to Palouse. The bus has been in the area for years and years and has evolved as a good instagrammable spot in the past few years.

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Photo by David Kovalenko on Unsplash

5. Visit Spokane

Two hours drive from Palouse waterfall is a big beautiful town named Spokane. The city Spokane is a city rich in the region’s art, culture, and vibrant history.

You can visit the splendid Riverfront Park and enjoy the attractive natural Spokane Falls.

6. Wine Tasting At Walla Walla

Walla Walla takes an hour’s drive from the Palouse, and the city is recognized among the best and finest wine regions in the nation.

The city has almost 3000 acres of grapes and more than 130 wineries. They provide a wine-tasting experience with exceptional taste.

Wildlife At The Palouse State Park

The Blue Mountains surrounding the Palouse State Park and the waterfall are a national forest and home to several species of animals.

As a tourist, it is important to preserve and respect the rich wilderness of the park. Some popular animals you can encounter on your visit are snakes, bears, moose, bobcats, elk, and cougars.

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Photo by Matt Nelson on Unsplash

Besides animals, you can also encounter different plant species, wild plants, and flowers in the Blue Mountains.

Things To Carry On Your Visit

  • It is important to wear athletic shoes during your visit to Palouse State park.
  • Carry an ample amount of water and well as sunscreen since the rays are very strong.
  • Also, carry a bug spray to help you while hiking and camping.
  • Do not forget to carry your camera to capture the breathtaking and beautiful views.
  • In addition, bring some snacks to enjoy a lovely snack break or lunch at the picnic tables.


Visit the Palouse waterfall and experience the natural waterfall’s beauty with your own eyes. The Palouse Falls State Park, besides being a family-friendly park, is also a pet-friendly park.

The park offers various fun and exciting activities to do and enjoy the natural beauty of the place. The garden and the falls are must-visit places in the east of Washington.

Frequently Asked Questions:

6 Things to do at Palouse

Last Updated on August 11, 2023 by somya909