Feather Falls, Plumas National Forest CA

• 4-star hike
• 7.5 mile loop
• Medium difficulty | Gain 1,100 feet
• Quincy, CA | Plumas Region
• Driving Directions: Trailhead

View of feather falls cascading 640 foot down a sheer rock face

Peer precariously over the edge of one of the biggest waterfalls in the country, looking directly down upon the 640-foot drop to the valley below.

Feather Falls National Scenic Trail in the Plumas National Forest traverses an 7½-mile loop to an observation platform close to the waterfall, providing excellent views of the torrents of water flowing over a sheer granite cliff. If you're feeling a little more adventurous you can take a further short half-mile trail for an even more exhilarating view from very top of the falls. Thankfully there are fenced-in areas to provide safety; though please still take caution as hikers have previously lost their lives having fallen into the stream and being swept over the falls.

This area was devastated by the 2021 Dixie Fire, and what was once a dense forest hike is now a desolate landscape with signs of nature suggesting a gradual recovery. The Forest Service have rebuilt the trail including new bridges and observation platform and the trail was reopened in late March 2024.

Feather Falls Trail

Feather Falls Trail 4★
7.5 mi, Out & Back, Medium, Gain 1,100ft
Trailspotting Map at AllTrails

The lower, returning leg of the trail includes several interpretive signs and interesting observation points, including two millenium old bowl-shaped rock depressions created by the Maidu Indians, used as mortars to grind acorns. The trail also has great views of Bald Rock Dome, known as “Earth-Maker” to the Maidu, is reminiscent of Yosemite's Half-Dome and towers 2,000 feet above the Middle Fork Feather River.

Although any time is a good time to tackle this trail, spring is undoubtedly the best time to experience the full force of the falls during the snowmelt and to see the variety of wildflower color and species which bloom all along the route.

Looking back down the deep canyon created by the Middle Fork Feather River
Looking back along the Middle Fork Feather River canyon.

1. People stood in a metal cage next to the edge of the falls 2. Longer view of Feather Falls
Looking out from the falls. | Longer Feather Falls view.

• Trail Links: Official Site
• Public Map at AllTrails: Feather Falls Loop Trail

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