Speaking from my own personal experience, it’s also a great spot for a multi-day backpacking trek. The McKenzie River is a magical waterway, draining the western slope of much of the Central Oregon Cascades. Our guides and shuttle drivers know all the access points to the gorgeous McKenzie River Trail and other great trails in the area. The McKenzie River is a 90-mile (145 km) tributary of the Willamette River in western Oregon in the United States. The trail winds its way in and out of the forest and provides great views of the McKenzie River, old lava flows, and other geologic features. Return to forest on the other side of the bridge and make your way to a nearby junction with McKenzie River Trail. The Tamolitch Pool is also called the Blue Pool and is one of the most unique bodies of water in all of Oregon. © 2020 McKenzieRiverTrail.com All rights reserved. I LOVE their property. Because Clear Lake is fed by mountain water, the lake is very cold all year long. Both the Waterfall Trail and McKenzie River Trail can be accessed from here at signs marking the trails. The trail rises slowly in elevation from 1,450 to 3,200 feet. "Watch", I told Dollie "I really don't want to go hiking today but there'll be three morons at the parking lot and I'll have to lead the hike anyway". Best mobile phone mapping app for intrepid tourists, because even when you don’t have an internet connection, it shows where you are on a previously-downloaded, offline map. Although the hike was less than 2 hours from Bend, we made a weekend of wildflowers, waterfalls, and the McKenzie River by camping at Belknap Hot Springs Resort. Washington, and crosses a bridge over the McKenzie River.. The route is perpetually shaded for most of its eight miles or so, numerous creeks cross the trail, the forest is eminently green, and the McKenzie River makes frequent appearances with each break in … Clear Lake via McKenzie River Trail is a 3.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Cascadia, Oregon that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. It’s an escape to an enchanted forest with its secret gardens, nature trails and private beach spots along the river. McKENZIE RIVER. The majestic McKenzie River. McKenzie River leaves Clear Lake. Renowned for fishing, the McKenzie River supports spring Chinook salmon, winter steelhead and summer steelhead as well as native rainbow, cutthroat and bull trout. It drains part of the Cascade Range east of Eugene and flows westward into the southernmost end of the Willamette Valley.It is named for Donald McKenzie, a Scottish Canadian fur trader who explored parts of the Pacific Northwest for the Pacific Fur Company in the early 19th century. Best Spring Hikes Along Oregon Rivers #4: McKenzie River. 4. This long regional trail, with the more formal name McKenzie River National Scenic Trail, can be used to explore even more of the area. The volcanic legacy of the area has also left its mark, with lava flows burying whole sections of the river causing the McKenzie to flow underground for … We're going from the west side, near McKenzie Bridge, to the east side near Sisters. Take Forest Road #15 and continue driving 3 1/2 more miles, past Blue River Reservoir, to Forest Road #1506. The main trail that runs parallel to the river is the 26-mile McKenzie River Trail. Sahalie Falls is by far my favorite waterfall in Oregon. With crystal clear water swiftly moving by a tree lined river bank full of fun rapids the excitement never stops on this scenic rafting trip. We also visited Clear Lake after. Golden … The leaves in Oregon have changed, and started to fall. This section of the McKenzie River Trail heads upstream from the Trail Bridge Campground to Tamolitch Pool, and it is a very popular hike any time of the year. The McKenzie River Trail was recognized by Bike Magazine as America’s number one mountain biking trail in 2008. Camping on the McKenzie River. The McKenzie River Trail is an amazing 26-mile trail that winds along the beautiful McKenzie River past lush old growth forests, crystal clear lakes, magical waterfalls, and amazing riverside scenery. The McKenzie River Trail is a 26-mile trail altogether; the trail to the Tamolitch Pool is a short hike of only four miles. The McKenzie River is an Oregon classic for rafters and for good reason. It’s also gotten props as one of America’s best running trails . The McKenzie River Trail can be used for anything from short day-hikes to a weekend of backpacking. Turn right and proceed about 7 miles to the lower … The trail maintains a gradual downhill track through old growth conifer trees as it winds along the edge of the McKenzie River and crosses the river on a footbridge just before Clear Lake. The stretch of the McKenzie River Trail that runs between Carmen Diversion Reservoir and Tamolitch Falls, also known as the Blue Pool, is notable for the conspicuous absence of the McKenzie River. The trail is a gradual downhill track that winds along the edge of the McKenzie River, passing underneath old growth conifers, through old lava flows, and past spectacular waterfalls. The entire McKenzie River Trail is 26 miles, from its north end near Clear Lake (the headwaters of the McKenzie) to its south end near the McKenzie Ranger Station. The rain has mostly extinguished the large fires in our area of Oregon. There is an access trail heading towards the waterfall (although it says "Do NOT Enter"). If there is one trail you spend some time on outside of Eugene, make it the McKenzie River Trail. Hiking the waterfalls on the McKenzie River Trail twice is a good idea • With all there is to see, two-timing the waterfalls on the McKenzie River Trail is a must You can hike the whole thing or just a section of it, starting at one of the many trailheads along the way. Clear Lake is the headwaters of the McKenzie River. All text and photos, copyright Caroline Arnold. It is a beautiful area, and I am so glad that it escaped the destruction. An excellent website for Oregon hikes is oregonhikers.org, even though it covers only parts of the McKenzie River Trail. Coordinates: 44.34075, -122.0026. The McKenzie River Trail is one of the absolute best mountain bike trails in North America. The beautiful McKenzie River Valley is a 68 mile long corridor stretching between Sisters on the east and Springfield on the west. This cold water helps preserve trees standing at the bottom the lake that were flooded nearly 3,000 years ago. The Waterfall loop connects with the McKenzie River Trail making about a 2.5 mile hike that borders the river on both sides and gives multiple viewpoints for the waterfalls. Get out there while you can. Beginning at the Upper McKenzie River Trailhead, McKenzie River National Recreation Trail #3507 starts in an old lava flow, originating from Mt. This little section of the McKenzie River Trail is one of my summertime go-to hikes. 12 reviews of McKenzie River Trail "We got to hike the Koosah Falls to Sahalie Falls with a little one. Nearly 25 miles in length and slightly downhill (when ridden as a shuttle), the trail’s stats are a bit misleading. Fall Colors, McKenzie River’s Willamette National Forest, Oregon. McKenzie River Trail When I got up in the morning, the rain was just pouring down in sheets, loudly pelting the living room windows and disturbing the cat's sleep. Both falls are located along McKenzie River in the Cascade Mountains. The river water was a stunning gray-blue. The trail along the McKenzie River is very beautiful, and you will some very lush, almost rain forest like vegetation while you are hiking, and in many places the trees and rocks are covered in moss. Here are nine of the best hikes and trips beginning on McKenzie Pass. Additional Info: McKenzie River Trail. The trail grade flattens near the lower portion where parks and campgrounds hug the shoreline of the widening river. Music by … Scroll to the bottom of this page for a link to even better video of fall colors of the McKenzie River. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from April until September. There are two trailheads where you can start, but the lower trail off the McKenzie River Scenic Byway will ensure that you get a view of Koosah Falls. Drawing from an aquifer basin and connected to some of the clearest lakes in the nation, the McKenzie River winds through the base of the Cascade Mountains and forges over mossy cliffs to form breathtaking waterfalls. Because the McKenzie River is spring fed, the waterfalls flow year-round. Castle Rock Trail Castle Rock Trail also serves as a gateway to the O’Leary Complex of trails. McKenzie River Loop Trail Raging River One thing to keep in mind when hiking with a canine; it might be tempting to your dog to jump in and take a swim – or to lap up some of that cool blue water. We can create a number of custom hikes depending on what you are looking for. This hike is within 10 miles of one of the major fires that occurred in September. Top Area Hikes for Fall Color I hiked with my friend Hanne along the McKenzie River. 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