Stock landscape and outdoor adventure photos from Oregon, Washington, and the Pacific Northwest

Silver Falls State Park Photos from late Autumn

Shamefully I’ve never photographed one of Oregon’s most beautiful locations, Silver Falls State Park, until recently.  As autumn was winding to a halt and snow was falling in Bend, I decided I wasn’t ready for winter and made a trip over Santiam Pass to this gem in the Oregon State Park system.  Silver falls is one of the places that makes Oregon special.  The fact that is not a National Park is a tribute to our states beauty.  It is one of the Oregon State parks, Like Smith Rock State Park and Ecola State Park that would definitely be a national park if they were located in most other states in America.  To view a beautiful fine art photograph of South Falls in Silver Falls State Park, visit  this link, Silver Falls fine art print.

Photo/Picsture of South Falls at Oregon's Silver Falls State Park

Photo/Picsture of South Falls at Oregon’s Silver Falls State Park

Silver Falls is located near Silverton, Oregon and was about a 2.5 hour drive from Bend in good weather.  A great way to explore Silver Falls is to hike the “Trail of Ten Falls”  which has a trailhead at the South Falls parking lot.   At about 8 miles in length, the hike might not be for everybody but it is certainly not a technical hike.  The image above is of South Falls from near the parking lot and visitor center.  South Falls drops 177ft into a beautiful dark pool.

Autumn leaves and South Falls at Silver Falls State Park in Oregon

Autumn leaves and South Falls at Silver Falls State Park in Oregon

South Falls is one of the three waterfalls in the park that you can actually walk behind which is a fun experience for young and old.  Continuing behind the falls will lead you accross an attractive foot bridge across Silver Creek which will connect you with the Trail Of Ten Falls.  If you follow the Trail of ten falls, like I did, you will next stumble upon Lower South Falls which is pictured below.

Photograph of Lower South Falls at Silver Falls State Park

Photograph of Lower South Falls at Silver Falls State Park

There is beauty in every direction on this section of the trail of ten falls.  The outflow from Lower South Falls is particularly beautiful and I was lucky enough to catch some late fall color with the gracefully flowing Silver Creek in the following Image.

Silver Creek and fall color in Oregon's Silver Falls State Park

Silver Creek and fall color in Oregon’s Silver Falls State Park

While continuing along the trail of ten falls, you’ll fight sensory overload for over a mile before hearing the roar of the small but attractive Lower North Falls pictures below.

Lower North Falls framed by autumn foliage

Lower North Falls framed by autumn foliage

The trail throughout this state park is an exceptional tribute to Oregon’s natural beauty that cannot be overstated.  The lush textures of this temperate rain forest combined with the rich earthy aromas of early autumn decay are unforgettable and two of the few things that my home town of Bend, Oregon lacks.  Luckily, this green eden is only 2.5 hours away for a slow driver like myself.  The trail passes a few smaller but still enchanting falls during its next stretch.  Double falls, Drake Falls, and Middle North Falls are all enjoyed in this stretch of the Trail of ten falls.  A side trail off of the trail of ten falls visits the very worth winter falls.  This waterfall relies on heavier waterflows for its elegant form.  If you visit Silver Falls State Park in the heat of summer, you might skip this detour as the falls may be absent.  Below is Winter falls in its autumn glory.

Photo of Oregon's Winter Falls

Photo of Oregon’s Winter Falls

this stunning waterfall does deserve inspection if there is enough water flow.  Below is a closer image of Winter falls.

Winter Falls and fall color at Silver Falls State Park

Winter Falls and fall color at Silver Falls State Park

The trail is laden with life throughout this hike but particularly so between Twin falls and the Jaw Dropping North Falls.  Below is a small bonus I found during this autumn hike.

Mushrooms at Silver Falls State Park

Mushrooms at Silver Falls State Park

In this startlingly beautiful hike, North Falls is truly one of the highlights.  There are many good vantage points from which to view this 136 foot watery beauty.

Picture/photo of North Falls at Silver Falls State Park

Picture/photo of North Falls at Silver Falls State Park

North falls is easily accessible from  the aptly named North Falls Parking lot.  It is not to be missed!  It is one of the waterfalls that you can walk behind if you can negotiate relatively easy sections of mossy lush wooded trail like the one pictured below.

Wooded Trail in Silver Falls State Park, Oregon

Wooded Trail in Silver Falls State Park, Oregon

One last view of North Falls as seen from near the underpass seems worthy to me.  I was a little late for optimal fall color, but the scenery is stunning at any time of year in this wonderful State Park.

View from behind North Falls at Silver Falls State Park

View from behind North Falls at Silver Falls State Park

This park is just plain amazing and a worthy visit for explorers of any age.  If you are traveling from Central Oregon I would highly recommend leaving early and planning on spending an entire day in this watery wonderland.  One final recommendation.  Stop at Rosie’s Mountain Coffe House in Mill City, Oregon along the way.  The service is great and the food and drinks are even better.  Excellent scones, flavorful coffee and the best cold cut sandwiches outside of Camp Sherman all served in a quaint roadside setting.  It should be part of your Silver Falls State adventure if you are visiting from the Central Oregon area.

More of my great Oregon Waterfall images can be found at my Mike Putnam Photography site which can be visited here, Oregon waterfall photos

Thanks for reading,

Mike Putnam

3 Responses Subscribe to comments


  1. Thanks for the First Friday Art Walk support! - Mike Putnam Photography | Fine Art landscape Photography celebrating the beauty of Central Oregon

    [...] site.  Please visit the following link to view some beautiful Oregon Waterfall images.  Oregon Waterfall photos.  Thanks again [...]

    Nov 13, 2009 @ 1:40 pm


  2. Joshua Bury

    Excellent overview and awesome images Mike. I grew up a little over 5 miles down the road from Silver Falls and never grew tired of visiting.

    Nov 13, 2009 @ 1:57 pm


  3. admin

    Josh,
    Thanks for visiting. I really was a little late for the peak of fall color but it sure is a beautiful place to visit anyway, isn’t it. I bet you have some real winners from there. I feel ashamed that I’ve never gotten over there before for photography purposes! I hope you are doing great. Keep up the awesome work on Flickr!
    All the Best,
    Mike

    Nov 13, 2009 @ 3:09 pm

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