Dalton Point as seen from atop Angel's Rest.........September 9, 2001.
Dalton Point is a great place for rambling along the Columbia River Shore in search of native wildflowers from mid summer to mid fall. Few visitors use the area for this purpose, as most come to stroll the beach with kids, fish the bank, launch a boat for fishing upstream towards Bonneville Dam, or increasingly, to launch kayaks to explore the Columbia River shores.
If you do come to enjoy the beach flowers, consider wearing Tevas or other similar sandles unless your bear feet are well hardened. There are some stretches of shoreline that are filled with sedges (remember, "Sedges have sharp edges.") and rushes and other vegetation. The lower shoreline is slippery and muddy and because there are still tides here, may be covered much of the day.
Dalton Point may only be reached via westbound traffic on Interstate 84. It is the first exit westbound to the west of Multnomah Falls. Eastbound traffic will need to exit at Multnomah Falls and then reenter the freeway westbound (a lengthy task during sunny weekends, and especially on holidays or Mother's Day!). The exit is short so decelerate a bit before you reach the exit. Turn immediately right and then again to the right into the parking area. There is a small pit toilet at the parking lot. Proceed carefully down the boat ramp to the beach. The beach to the east (right) is most easily accessed. One can ramble over the rocky to sandy shore through low shrubs, and at low water, one can hike several hundred yards east of the point. This is a spot where car breakins could occur (although I don't think there has been a problem recently) due to the trees which hide the parking lot from the beach and freeway, so hide valuables before you get to the parking lot.
The beach to the west has a series of springs which make crossing in good shoes or boots problematic. Either use hiking sandals or wait until fall to make the crossing. At this point, it is fairly straight forward to hike west towards Bridal Veil Creek.
Plants to be viewed at Dalton Point include licorice root, western water-hemlock, common silverweed, western goldenrod, sneezeweed, Douglas' Aster and great swamp groundsel.
September 12, 2004