Rock of Ages and Horsetail Creek loop hike

#5 of 5 trails in Ainsworth State Park

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Rock of Ages and Horsetail Creek Loop Trail is a 9.4 mile loop trail located near Bridal Veil, Oregon and is only recommended for very experienced outdoorsmen. The hike starts at Horsetail Falls trailhead and veers left after 6 switchbacks just before Ponytail Falls.

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Melanie Hernandez (156)

4 Completed5 Reviews

Rocky But Fun!

Sam Kimerling (46)

1 Completed1 Reviews

Nick Noble (149)

11 Completed2 Reviews

This is a challenging hike that rewards your 3,000 ft climb with creek crossings and waterfall views. It doesn't get much better than this in the Gorge. The shorter version to Devil's Backbone is still a tough climb, but can be done as an out and back instead of the full loop. Not family friendly, and remember to bring enough water.

Jon B (416)

51 Completed4 Reviews

very steep. phenomenal views. interesting geology. did i mention very steep?

Tim Todd (14729)

1064 Completed140 Reviews

My favorite trail in this area. It is a difficult and all of it has been said in previous reviews so I won't repeat. Be careful and enjoy the views.

Matt Kinney (2241)

63 Completed42 Reviews

Rock of Ages is by far one of the most difficult hikes out there. We took some detours that had us literally sidestepping over a sheer cliff face. It is definitely worth it to take the side trail to the top of ponytail falls. I am pictured above in the arch and I have to say besides Devil’s backbone, this is one of the best views of the gorge imaginable. This is a no kids hike that has some potentially dangerous moments, but if you keep your wits and sense of direction, you will be rewarded and want to go again. I am going again at the end of the week. Be careful and remember to pack out what you bring in…

Blake Romey (248)

10 Completed7 Reviews

Phenomenal hike. Difficult to get up. Some of the trails are more like deer trails than hiking trails, but once you get to the top the view is well worth the hike. If you continue up the trail goes almost endlessly to the top of the ridge. I recommend a nice day, it can get a little cold with the wind.

Shawn Severud (181)

1 Completed1 Reviews

I also agree with the last two reviewers. This is a very strenuous hike, so if you were with kids, you most likely didn't get to the actual trail. This trail breaks off up and to the left before you get to the waterfall. Rock of ages is beautiful (and windy) and the view from devil's backbone is incredible. Not for novice hikers.

Ashid Mapanzigan (159)

23 Completed3 Reviews

I agree with the previous review. Most of those posting below have confused this trail with the Horsetail and Triple Falls trail. I recently went with a couple friends to the Rock of Ages, which is perched directly up the side of the east canyon wall above Ponytail Falls, and it was a blast. Definitely not for amatuers, however, as the unmaintained trail is more of a near-vertical climb up a stone staircase.

K L Sinizer (120)

0 Completed1 Reviews

This is a fantastic loop. However, I don't think any of the other reviewers actually did it. The trail to the Rock of Ages arch is very steep, gaining over 2900' in three miles, and can require hand over hand in places. Beyond that there is a traverse across an exposed rocky spine and a creek crossing on a very slippery log. I crossed on all fours. I would not recommend this part of the loop for children. I loved this hike but would definitely call it difficult.