Silver Falls State Park is located near Silverton, Oregon. It’s on my list of favorites. This area has great day-use spots for families and a pretty awesome system of loops and trails. Not to mention, this place has VIEWS! The important part is getting here just as the sun is rising to beat the crowds, because this is an extremely popular place. I prefer my forest hikes lightly trafficked and that’s why I get here around 7 am if possible. The way the sun starts to peek through the trees is totally worth it. There is a state park fee of $5 if you don’t have the State Parks pass for Oregon.
Trail of Ten Falls
The area we hiked was Trail of Ten Falls. Mind you, if you do attempt to hike to all ten of the falls, it is a little over 8 miles total. However if you don’t have the time or physical ability to do that much nature walking, you can do some smaller loops in the park.
Our really early morning began at the South Falls Day-Use Area. This is where we parked, and where most people end up parking. However, if you are trying to see more falls with less mileage, I would recommend parking in the North Falls area. It’s actually pretty unfortunate that North Falls and South Falls are at opposite ends of the park because they are both the most spectacular ones to see. If you are reduced to picking one end or the other, you can check out all my pictures to see which one would be most worth it to you. When we started out, there was maybe 3 other cars in the lot. This is my ideal situation. Less people = better pictures = happy Tamara. It’s simple math really.
I’m going to do my best to recall all ten falls because some are definitely more memorable than others!
This was stop #1 for us since we parked in the south lot. This is the most notable one because the picture that you see for Silver Falls is usually of this one in particular. It just has a lot of photogenic spots, especially in the early morning. This one is fun because the trail goes under the falls and then around it.
Lower South Falls
Lower North Falls
No picture for Drake because you literally stand ON TOP of this one, on a cliffside balcony. Still a cool lookout point.
Middle North Falls
Upper North Falls
First, you have to know I made several nerdy Game of Thrones jokes about this one. And second, this one is more like a Winter ‘Trickle’ rather than falls, but maybe that’s because I was here in the summer. This one definitely depends on the season you are hiking and whether or not there was a recent rain storm. Either way, it wasn’t one of my favorites, but I was on a mission to hit all ten of them.
All in all, its an easy/moderate hike. Its great for beginners trying to build up trail stamina and if done early, you might not see too many other hikers! It does get packed, and we notice this every time we are leaving the trail that cars are pulling in and hikers are beginning the trail. You’ll hear me say this in every post because as outdoor places become more popular, they become more crowded. GET THERE EARLY!