You can see one of Oregon’s most popular waterfalls from a new perspective the next time you visit Silver Falls State Park.
A new hiking trail and day-use area opened last week on the north side of the park near Silverton off Highway 214. The additions mark the first completed phase in a major expansion at the popular destination that’s estimated to cost $12 million.
The new North Canyon Day Use Area has room for 59 vehicles at any given time and offers a restroom, picnic tables, and a string of outdoor play areas designed in harmony with the natural setting. If you can’t find any signs pointing out its existence, that’s because there aren’t any — yet. Highway signs are expected to be installed this fall, but the lack of posted information hasn’t stopped people from finding it. The lot was reportedly full the first weekend after it opened.
From the North Canyon Day Use Area, guests can pick up the new North Rim Trail. The half-mile route leads to a new viewpoint over North Falls. Park manager Chris Gilliand told the Statesman Journal the vista is “unlike any other waterfall view in the park.” The trail is ADA-accessible and made of compacted gravel specifically designed for those who use mobility devices.
Hikers can also use a dirt path at the end of North Rim Trail to connect with the existing North Falls Trailhead, which leads to the Trail of Ten Falls. You can find the new North Canyon lot by continuing half a mile north of the North Falls Trailhead on Hwy. 214, then turning left on an access road that leads to the day-use area.