Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
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Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Dog Creek, Washington"
Includes ... Dog Creek ... Campsite of April 13, 1806 ... Dog Creek ... Dog Creek Falls ... "Western Star" Excursion Train, July 6, 2005 ...
Image, 2012, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Dog Creek Falls, Washington. Dog Creek is on the east side of Dog Mountain. Image taken June 15, 2012.


Dog Creek ...
Dog Creek is located on the Washington side of the Columbia at River Mile (RM) 161, just upstream of Collins Creek. It follows the east side of Dog Mountain.

Dog Creek Falls ...
Dog Creek Falls is 30 feet high and 10 feet wide, and can be seen from Washington State Highway 14. Dog Creek Falls is one of many falls in the Columbia River Gorge.

Lewis and Clark and Dog Creek ...
Lewis and Clark pass the Dog Creek area on October 30, 1805, but make no mention of the creek. On their return however, they camped on its right bank on April 13, 1806.

Campsite of April 13, 1806 ...
On April 13, 1806, while Captain Lewis was on the Oregon side of the Columbia trying to purchase a canoe to replace one of their damaged canoes, Captain Clark proceeded up the Washington shore to the mouth of the Wind River, a river Lewis and Clark called "Cruzats River". Here he expected to find a party of hunters they had sent out two days earlier. Not finding them at Wind River, Clark and his men proceeded on upstream and set up camp at a spot at the base of Dog Mountain, between Collins Creek and Dog Creek, two creeks marked on the route map but not named [Moulton, vol.1, map#78]. Clark's campsite flag shows the camp to be very near the western (right bank) mouth of Dog Creek.

"... I with the two large Canoes proceeded on up the N.W. Side with the intention of gitting to the Encampment of our hunters who was derected to hunt in the bottom above Crusats River, and there wait the arival of Capt. Lewis. I proceeded on to the bottom in which I expected to find the hunters but Could See nothing of them.    the wind rose and raised the waves to Such a hight that I could not proceed any further.     we landed and I sent out Shields and Colter to hunt ... I walkd to Crusats river and up in 1/2 a mile     on my return to the party found that the wind had lulled and as we Could See nothing of our hunters. I deturmined to proceed on to the next bottom where I thought it probable they had halted     at the next bottom formed a Camp and Sent out all the hunters. I also walked out my self on the hills but saw nothing. ..." [Clark, April 13, 1806]

Lewis and Clark's previous campsite was on the Washington side of the Columbia River near Ashes Lake, and their campsite of April 14, 1806, was also on the Washington side of the Columbia River near Major Creek.


Image, 2012, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
View towards right bank of Dog Creek, Washington. View from the left bank of Dog Creek, towards Washington State Highway 14, near its mouth with the Columbia. Image taken June 15, 2012.


Views ...
Dog Creek and Dog Creek Falls can be reached from Washington State Highway 14. There is a parking lot to the east and an easy walking path to the creek and falls. The Falls can also be seen from the Highway heading west.

Image, 2004, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Dog Creek Falls, Washington, as seen from Washington Highway 14. Image taken November 4, 2004.
Image, 2012, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Dog Creek at falls. Image taken June 15, 2012.
Image, 2012, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
View upstream, Dog Creek, Washington. View from the left bank of Dog Creek near its mouth with the Columbia, looking upstream/ Image taken June 15, 2012.
Image, 2004, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Dog Creek, Washington, as seen from Washington Highway 14. Image taken November 4, 2004.
Image, 2012, Dog Creek Falls, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Dog Creek from below falls, looking downstream. Image taken June 15, 2012.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, October 30, 1805 ...
A cool morning, a moderate rain all the last night, after eating a partial brackfast of venison we Set out [from their camp near Drano Lake and the Little White Salmon River]     passed Several places where the rocks projected into the river & have the appearance of haveing Seperated from the mountains and fallen promiscuisly into the river, Small nitches are formed in the banks below those projecting rocks which is comon in this part of the river, Saw 4 Cascades caused by Small Streams falling from the mountains on the Lard. Side,

[The possiblities in a two-mile area are - upstream to downstream - Starvation Creek and Falls, the seasonal Cabin Creek and Falls, Warren Creek and Falls, Wonder Creek and Lancaster Falls, Lindsey Creek and Falls, and Summit Creek and Falls.]

a remarkable circumstance in this part of the river is, the Stumps of pine trees [Submerged Forest]

[The Submerged Forest existed along the reach from above Dog Mountain/Viento Creek on the upstream edge and Wind Mountain/Shellrock Mountain on the downstream edge.]

are in maney places are at Some distance in the river, and gives every appearance of the rivers being damed up below from Some cause which I am not at this time acquainted with [Bonneville Landslide],     the Current of the river is also verry jentle not exceeding 1 1/2 mile pr. hour and about 3/4 of a mile in width. Some rain, we landed above the mouth of a Small river on the Stard. Side [Wind River] and Dined ...   :  here the river widens to about one mile large Sand bar in the middle, a Great [rock] both in and out of the water, large <round> Stones, or rocks are also permiscuisly Scattered about in the river, ...     The bottoms above the mouth of this little river [Wind River] <which we Call> is rich covered with grass & firn & is about 3/4 of a mile wide rich and rises gradually, below the river (which is 60 yards wide above its mouth) the Countery rises with Steep assent. we call this little river <fr Ash> New Timbered river from a Speces of Ash <that wood> which grows on its banks of a verry large and different from any we had before Seen, and a timber resembling the beech in bark <& groth> but different in its leaf which is Smaller and the tree smaller. passed maney large rocks in the river and a large creek on the Stard. Side in the mouth of which is an Island [Rock Creek near Stevenson, Washington], passed on the right of 3 Islands <on> near the Stard. Side, and landed on an Island close under the Stard. Side at the head of the great Shute [head of the Cascades Rapids], and a little below a village of 8 large houses on a Deep bend on the Stard. Side, and opposit 2 Small Islands imediately in the head of the Shute, which Islands are covered with Pine, maney large rocks also, in the head of the Shute. Ponds back of the houses, and Countrey low for a Short distance. The day proved Cloudy dark and disagreeable with Some rain all day which kept us wet. The Countary a high mountain on each Side thickly Covered with timber, Such as Spruc, Pine, Cedar, Oake Cotton &c. &c.     I took two men and walked down three miles to examine the Shute and river below proceeded along an old Indian path, passd. an old village at 1 mile [vicinity of Ice House Lake] ...     I found by examonation that we must make a portage of the greater perpotion of our Stores 2 1/2 miles, and the Canoes we Could haul over the rocks, I returned at Dark ...     a wet disagreeable evening, the only wood we could get to burn on this little Island on which we have encamped [near Ashes Lake, the island is now under the waters of the Bonneville Reservoir. Ashes Lake was near the head of the Cascade Rapids. Across from Ashes Lake is Cascade Locks, Oregon.] is the newly discovered Ash, which makes a tolerable fire. we made fifteen miles to daye






Clark, April 13, 1806 ...
The loss of one of our large Canoes rendered it necessary to divide the loading and men of that Canoe between the remaining four, which was done and we loaded and Set out at 8 oClock A. M. [from their camp near Ashes Lake]     passed the village imediately above the rapids where only one house remains entire the other 8 haveing been taken down and moved to the opposit Side of the Columbia [downstream of Rock Creek and Stevenson, Washington] ...     Capt. Lewis with 2 of the Smallest Canoes of Sergt. Pryor & gibson and Crossed above the Rapids [Cascade Rapids] to the Village on the S E Side [east of Cascade Locks] with a view to purchase a Canoe of the nativs if possible. ...     I with the two large Canoes proceeded on up the N. W. Side with the intention of gitting to the Encampment of our hunters who was derected to hunt in the bottom above Crusats River [Wind River], and there wait the arrival of Capt. Lewis. I proceeded on to the bottom in which I expected to find the hunters but Could See nothing of them. the wind rose and raised the wavs to Such a hight that I could not proceed any further. we landed and I sent out Shields and Colter to hunt; Shields Shot two deer but Could get neither of them. I walkd. to Crusats river [Wind River] and up it a mile on my return to the party found that the wind had lulled and as we Could See nothing of our hunters. I deturmined to proceed on to the next bottom where I thought it probable they had halted at passed 2 P M Set out and proceeded on to the bottom 6 miles and halted at the next bottom formed a Camp and Sent out all the hunters [near Dog Mountain, between Collins Creek and Dog Creek].     I also walked out my self on the hills but saw nothing. on my return found Capt. Lewis at Camp with two canoes which he had purchased at the Y-ep-huh ...

I was convinced that the hunters must have been up River Cruzatt [Wind River]. despatched Sergt. Pryor with 2 men in a Canoe, with directions to assend Crusats River [Wind River] and if he found the hunters to assist them in with the meat. Jo: Shields returned about Sunset with two deer which he had killed, those were of the Black tail fallow Deer. <the> there appears to be no other Species of Deer in those mountains. We proceeded on 12 miles.





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*River Miles [RM] are approximate, in statute miles, and were determined from USGS topo maps, obtained from NOAA nautical charts, or obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website, 2003

Sources:    McArthur, L.A., and McArthur, L.L., 2003, Oregon Geographic Names, Oregon Historical Society Press, Portland;    Tolan, T.L., Beeson, M.H., and Vogt, B.F., 1984, Exploring the Neogene History of the Columbia River: Discussion and Geologic Field Trip Guide to the Columbia River Gorge, Oregon Geology, Vol.46, No.8, August 1984, and Vol.46, No.9, September 1984, Published by the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries;    U.S. Forest Service website, 2004, Pacific Northwest Region;    Waterfalls of the Pacific Northwest website, 2004;   

All Lewis and Clark quotations from Gary Moulton editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, University of Nebraska Press, all attempts have been made to type the quotations exactly as in the Moulton editions, however typing errors introduced by this web author cannot be ruled out; location interpretation from variety of sources, including this website author.
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June 2012