I didn’t see a single waterfall but I had a GREAT time at Silver Falls State Park. The picnic shelters this year provided a shaded spot to enjoy time with family (some years we stay out of the rain in these shelters). The green lawns were the perfect spot for kids to play and dogs to chase balls. Moss covered trees allowed just the right amount of light through to make the day seem magical.
While some of my cousins played in the water where the stream widens and a few hiked the trails behind the falls, I simply sat and enjoyed talking to cousins. I ran out of time before I enjoyed all this park has to offer.
From past visits I know the falls are spectacular. About 90 minutes from Portland, this is my favorite place to enjoy waterfalls on relatively flat trails. In the fall, it’s a great place to watch the leaves change colors. In the spring, it seems that photographers zoom in on trillium.
Over the years, I have learned a few important things about this location. While it’s not too far from Salem it seems pretty remote with no stores or cell service.
Cell Phone Service-There seems to be very limited service within the park. Several family members wandered the park for over an hour looking for the right meeting spot since they couldn’t phone a friend to find out where we were meeting. While it’s lovely to unplug, it requires planning if you are phone dependent for directions or reminders.
Pets-Pets are allowed in the park but not on all trails. If you want to take a long hike, leave your pet at home.
Accessibility-Our group at reserved Picnic Shelter E. It is far from the parking lot but cars are allowed to drive up to the site to load and unload items. While the nearest restroom was close, it was difficult for older family members to use because of the steep incline and stall doors that didn’t quite fit right making them nearly impossible to shut properly. It was not big enough for a scooter or wheelchair.