Silver Falls State Park, Oregon – Part Four


Having explored all the falls on the North Fork Silver Creek, I re-parked at the South Falls Day Use Area near the South Falls Lodge, completed in 1940.

The 177-foot South Falls is the second-tallest in the park (after Double Falls), and sees the most visitors.  The South Fork Silver Creek runs peacefully through a flat meadow (where Silver Falls City used to be), then suddenly plunges into the canyon.  A quarter-mile trail switchbacks down and runs behind the falls, then continues to descend to the bottom of the canyon.

In geologic history, during a break between basalt lava flows about 20 feet of sandy silt built up, allowing trees to grow.  As the next lava flow solidified, it left holes where the charred trees used to be.  Some of these holes are visible in the overhang behind the falls.