Columbia Hills Historical State Park: Horsethief Butte
Eastern Gorge, Washington
Horsethief Butte (photographer: Debbie Asakawa)
Hike Details
Out and back
1.5 miles round trip
Elevation Gain:
150 feet
Trail Features
Family Friendly:
Trailhead Pass:
Trail Details
WildflowersBeautiful ViewsCultural HistoryCultural HistoryIce Age FloodsIce Age Floods
To find this trail from the parking area, pass a couple side trails and take the first grassy path marked with stones that heads off to the right. Go straight on the main trail here, and you'll come to another junction. The left fork here leads to a rocky climb. For this hike, take the right fork. The well-marked trail leads across a flat area around the west side of the butte. After about a quarter mile, there's a signed trail junction. This side-trail leads up into a maze of narrow, rocky canyons. There are at least two signed works of Native American art in the canyons and the whole area is worth a side trip. Beyond the junction, the Horsethief Butte Trail continues around the south side of the butte. The rocky cliffs above the trail are home to several colors of lichen. There are more views of the river, this time toward the east. The trail ends about half a mile from the trailhead at the top of a cliff. Return the way you came.
Download a Park Map.

Directions & Travel Tips

Horsethief Butte Trailhead:  From Oregon, from I-84 take Exit #87/Highway 197 north (The Dalles Dam bridge). Cross the Columbia River and continue about two miles to WA Hwy 14. Turn right on WA Hwy 14 and drive about two miles to the signed trailhead on the right. From Washington, the trailhead is at about MP #86.