One of the most beautiful hikes in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest can be found just outside of Morton, where the Goat Creek Trail traverses stands of old-growth forest and crosses several small creeks before reaching the main attraction: Cathedral Falls.
Plunging more than 250 feet from over a rock outcropping that hangs over the trail, Cathedral Falls is one of the many natural wonders of Lewis County. Intrepid hikers can make their way to the bottom of the falls to grab some photos and explore where falls meets Goat Creek.
The waterfall is located about a mile and a half in from the Goat Creek Trailhead, and requires a bit of navigating across some creek water. Wear waterproof boots or be otherwise prepared to cross the streams!
Goat Creek Trail continues beyond Cathedral Falls to Vanson Lake, a peaceful respite tucked away from most of civilization. Camping and fishing in this area is permitted, and for hikers who want to get a good view of the region, Vanson Peak is nearby.
The Goat Creek Trail is located just beyond Taidnapam Park east of Morton. Directions are here, and please note that part of the access road to get to Goat Creek traverses privately-owned forest land that may close in times of high fire danger or weather-related incidents. Please check the status of the roads on the U.S. Forest Service website before heading out.