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Oregon
26

Oregon State Parks

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USA Parks
Oregon
Willamette Valley Region
Silver Falls State Park
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Silver Falls State Park © David Leer
Silver Falls State Park Silver Creek © June Gempler
Hiking the Silver Creek trail provides spectacular views of within this rain forest.
Silver Falls State Park © David Leer
Silver Falls State Park Fall Foliage © Thomas Reiman
Douglas Fir tree surrounded by fall colors in Silver Creek State Park.
Silver Falls State Park South Falls © June Gempler
South Falls, the easiest falls to view is also quite spectacular. However every falls in Silver Falls State Park provide their own personalities and beauty.
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SILVER FALLS STATE PARK
Nestled in the lower elevation of Oregon's Cascade Mountains lies a temperate rain forest. It's here that the Trail of Ten Falls/Canyon Trail (770k) (Acrobat required to view map) can be found. The Canyon Trail and the falls descend to a forest floor covered with ferns, mosses, and wildflowers. You will also find stands of Douglas fir, hemlock, and cedar. While the park is visited by thousands every year, it's large enough for you to find quiet places to sit and watch for birds (download a bird list as a text file.)

The Canyon Trail is a nationally-recognized trail system that leads hikers along the banks of the north and south forks of Silver Creek. It takes you to 10 majestic waterfalls, ranging from the grand South Falls (177 feet), to the delicate Drake Falls (27 feet). Four of these falls have an amphitheater-like surrounding where you can walk behind the falls and feel the misty, crisp spray.

Please stay on marked trails and within designated day-use areas at all times. Respect any posted trail closure notices.

At Silver Falls, you will find unique group camping areas like the Old and New Ranch buildings, Silver Creek Youth Camp, North Falls trailer and tent areas, RV, cabin and tent camping in the overnight campground. Additional cabin rentals and complete group accommodations can be found at the Silver Falls Conference Center (rates listed below are for the campground cabins, not the conference center cabins). Where to Stay at Silver Falls State Park (3.8M pdf)

Guided daytime horse trail rides for people of all abilities are available from Memorial Day to Labor Day for $27 per person (covers a 1-hour ride and horse rental). For more information or to make special arrangements, call (503) 873-3890.

Special rules: Silver Falls State Park welcomes visitors and their pets. Please keep in mind these rules:

Control your pet: Keep your pet on a leash no longer than 6 feet at all times. Your pet must be able to respond to your commands, and you must be physically capable of restraining your pet. This rules protects you, other visitors, and park wildlife (Silver Falls is a designated state wildlife refuge). Refer to the Silver Falls State Park Trail Guide for information on pet restrictions on trails .

Be a good neighbor: Bag and remove all pet wastes. For your convenience, Mutt Mitt dispensers are located throughout the park. Make sure your pet is accompanied at all times, whether in the campground or picnic areas.

Going for a walk: The park has over 25 miles of trails for hiking (14 miles of horse trails). Because the canyon trail is narrow and bordered by sharp drop-offs in spots, bicycles, skate boards, in-line skates, and pets are not allowed on the canyon trail. If you have any questions about which trails will accommodate pets, check with park staff.
History of the Area
Located in the foothills of Oregon's Cascade Mountains, this 9,200-acre expanse is renowned for its scenic beauty and recreational opportunities. The area was initially inhabited by Native American tribes such as Kalapuya and Molalla before European settlers arrived.

In the late 19th century, it became a hub for logging operations due to abundant timber resources. However, over time concerns grew about preserving natural wonders like South Falls - one among ten waterfalls within park boundaries that cascade down from heights up to 177 feet.

The idea of transforming this region into a public recreation space began gaining traction during early decades of the twentieth century when June D. Drake started photographing these falls extensively; his images played an instrumental role in garnering support towards conservation efforts.

By mid-1920s local residents formed Silver Creek Recreation Demonstration Area Committee aiming at protecting their beloved landscape from further exploitation while promoting tourism simultaneously - they envisioned creating something akin to Niagara Falls or Yellowstone National Park on West Coast!

Their dream came closer reality after Samuel H Boardman (then State Parks engineer) visited site with other officials including Governor I.L Patterson who were all impressed enough propose purchasing land around four major cascades: North Middle Upper Lower Waterfalls respectively thus laying foundation what would eventually become largest state park within Beaver State's borders

Despite initial resistance some property owners reluctant sell lands government managed acquire necessary parcels through donations outright purchases between years1935-1948 During same period Civilian Conservation Corps built several facilities trails bridges picnic areas etc enhancing accessibility usability visitors
FACILITIES AND ACTIVITIES OVERVIEW
CampingPrimitiveyes
 Electric Sitesyes
 Water/Electric Sitesyes
 Full Hookup Sitesyes
Camping
1. Silver Falls State Park Campground: This campground offers more than 50 campsites for tents and RVs, as well as cabins that can be rented year-round. Amenities include hot showers, flush toilets, firewood sales and an RV dump station.

2. Group Tent Camping Areas: There are two group tent camping areas available in the park - Old Ranch Meadow which accommodates up to 40 people and New Ranch which holds up to 100 campers.

3. Youth Camp Area: A separate area is designated specifically for youth groups with a capacity of around 250 individuals.

4. Horse Concessionaire's Equestrian Primitive Camping Site: For those who enjoy horseback riding or have their own horses they want to bring along on their trip there's also equestrian primitive camping site near South falls day-use area.

5. RV Sites With Electricity: The state park has about eight full-hookup sites where you can set your trailer or recreational vehicle (RV).

6. Cabins And Lodges: If you prefer something less rustic but still within nature ,Silver Fall Lodge & Conference Center provides cabin rentals. These come equipped with heating systems , electricity etc making it perfect choice during colder months.

7. Backcountry/Primitive Camping Options: Howard Creek Horse Camp located at west end of the park allows back country style camping experience.


Location
Silver Falls State Park is located near Molalla, Salem and Silverton
Nearby Parks

Trails
1. Trail of Ten Falls: This is the park's most popular trail, a 7.2-mile loop that passes by ten stunning waterfalls.

2. South Falls Loop Trail: A moderate difficulty level hike covering about 0.8 miles and offering views of one of the largest falls in Silver State Park - The South Fall.

3. Maple Ridge Loop: An easy to navigate hiking path spanning approximately three miles with beautiful forest scenery including maple trees and ferns along its course.

4. The Winter Creek Bridge Hike: It's an easier route at just under two miles long which takes you through lush greenery leading up to a charming wooden bridge over Winter creek.

5. Canyon Rim Trails: These trails are more challenging due their steep inclines but reward hikers with breathtaking panoramic views from atop canyon rims.

6. North Canyon Nature Trail: A short half mile walk perfect for families or those looking for less strenuous activity; it offers educational signs on local flora & fauna throughout.

7. Twin Falls Loop: At around four-miles round trip, this moderately difficult trail leads hikers past several smaller cascades before reaching Twin Waterfall itself.

8. Perimeter Trial: As name suggests,this longest trial covers entire perimeter of park stretching upto 20miles providing diverse landscapes like dense forests,creeks,ravine etc.

9. Silver Creek Crossing: Another family:friendly option,this paved pathway crosses scenic silver creek multiple times giving ample opportunities for picnics near waterside.

10. Rim:Waterfall Scenic Route: Combining parts from different trials,it provides best mix view ranging from high rim vistas down into deep waterfall canyons.


Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
August 27 Go in the Spring by Dan Wathen
park review stars; one to five One of the very best state parks anywhere. Great trails,lovely falls, and temperate rain forest type vegetation. We went in late summer and a couple of falls were pretty dry. Spring is the best time for waterfalls viewing.
March 19 I have a question? by Anomynous Girl
park review stars; one to five What kind of plant life is there in Silver Falls?
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Directions
Silver Falls State Park is approximately 26 miles east of Salem. To reach the park from Portland, take I-5 South towards Salem and then merge onto OR-214 S via Exit 253 toward Silverton/Mt Angel. Continue on OR-214 for about 16 miles until you reach the town of Silverton.

In Silverton, turn left onto Water St/Highway 213 and continue to follow Highway 213 for about five miles. Then make a slight right onto Hobart Rd NE/Silverfalls Hwy SE/OR-214 E and drive for another six miles until you see signs directing you to the park entrance.

Once inside the park, there are various parking areas available near different trailheads depending on which part of the park you wish to explore first. The main parking area can be found at South Falls Day-use Area where restrooms and picnic facilities are also available.

To access some of the most popular waterfalls within Silver Falls State Park such as Lower South Falls or Middle North falls, start your hike from either North or South Canyon Trailhead (both accessible by car). Follow well-marked trails that will lead you through lush forests with breathtaking views along multiple cascading waterfalls throughout your journey.

Remember to bring comfortable walking shoes/hiking boots as some parts may be steep or slippery due to mist generated by waterfall spray. Additionally, it's advisable to carry drinking water/snacks since food services might not always be readily available within certain sections of this vast state park.

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Oregon
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Oregon State Parks

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