Whether you’re looking for a shorter outing, or just love a rip-roaring waterfall, Snoqualmie Falls, about 40 minutes east of Seattle, can fill an afternoon, well, to the brim.

Whether you’re looking for a shorter outing, or just love a rip-roaring waterfall, Snoqualmie Falls, about 40 minutes east of Seattle, can fill an afternoon, well, to the brim.

Here the gushing, snowmelt-fed Snoqualmie River makes a 270-foot lover’s-leap sort of plunge off a cliff to dash itself on rocks below, a sight that draws more than 1.5 million visitors a year. At the top, a small park and free observation deck are open dawn to dusk daily, with a gift shop and picnic area. If you need something a whole lot fancier, the tony Salish Lodge and Spa (with restaurant) is right next door (www.salishlodge.com
).

Note: Trails to the base of the falls are closed until fall 2013 during work to upgrade Puget Sound Energy’s hydropower facilities.

Getting there: From Seattle, take Interstate 90 east to Exit 25, then follow Highway 18 and Snoqualmie Parkway north to Railroad Avenue. Turn left; the falls is on the left in about a half-mile.

More information:
www.snoqualmiefalls.com

Brian J. Cantwell: 206-748-5724 or bcantwell@seattletimes.com