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Trail of Ten Falls

Updated: Sep 7, 2023

Silver Falls State Park, Oregon, 2023


I've had a major crush on Pacific Northwest (PNW) waterfalls for a hot minute and my list of falls to visit grows every year. This year, I was fortunate to connect with a few other badass women and conquer 20 waterfalls in 24 hours. Were there tears? Yes... tears of joy. If nature doesn't occasionally take your breath away and overwhelm you with its raw beauty, then are you even doing nature correctly?!*

*It's okay if nature doesn't move you to tears, no judgment here. I'm just super in touch with my feelings 😉😅

Trail of 10 Falls has been at the top of my list for several years now, I mean, it checks all the boxes:

Wildflowers ✔

Waterfalls ✔

Walk-Behind Waterfalls

Epic Wander ✔



The first stop on our epic wander was the Trail of Ten Falls located in Silver Falls State Park near Mehama, Oregon. If the name didn't give it away, then spoiler alert: there are 10 waterfalls on this 7.5-mile loop and a bonus 11th fall on a short branch off the main loop.

AllTrails rates this as a moderate hike with an overall elevation gain of 1,151 feet and a max elevation of 1,548 feet. You'll need to leave your furry bestie at home, dogs are not allowed on this trail.



I downloaded the navigation for Trail of Ten Falls from AllTrails. We completed the loop clockwise and included the side trail to Upper North Falls, but did end up missing Winter Falls (part of the loop, but you do need to take Winter Trail down from Rim Trail to view the waterfall).

This was a stunning and very well-maintained loop. Not a lot of technical spots (if you're familiar with PNW hikes, there are a lot of trail obstacles including water crossings, scree, roots, and "big step" rocks). There were 2 larger sections of stairs: one near Lower South Falls and the other near North Falls. The biggest obstacle for most people I saw on the trail that day was the massive muddy puddles on the trail, especially on the section of the trail that leads behind Lower South Falls.



The easiest way to get to the Trail of Ten Falls trailhead is to use the navigation system of your choice with your destination set as Silver Falls State Park - South Falls Day Use Area. There are several parking lots with access to the loop, but the largest parking lot (and your best bet to find parking on a crowded day) is the South Falls Day Use Area. This parking lot does have restrooms, an electric car charging station, a cafe, and a nature store (looked like a gift shop when we walked by). We did notice several signs around the parking lot warning guests that there was no potable water available, so make sure you bring your water!

In order to park anywhere within Silver Falls State Park, you do need an Oregon State Parks Day-Use Parking Permit. Daily parking permits are $5 per day, per vehicle, and can only be purchased at the park that charges the day-use parking fee, typically from a yellow kiosk machine located in the parking lot. Oregon does offer 12-month ($30) and 24-month ($50) parking permit options, but these need to be purchased in advance either online, from most major state park offices, or from vendors statewide. For more information on the extended Oregon State Parks parking permits, click here.



Trail of Ten Falls is a truly magical experience. If you are looking for a hike through a lush forest that features 10 waterfalls, 4 of which you get to walk behind, then look no further! This is a very popular trail (for obvious reasons), so make sure to plan your hike for a weekday morning.

BEST TIME TO VISIT: ensure you catch this trail during peak waterfall season, which is typically April through June in the PNW.


 Darcy Wanders 



Welcome to Darcy Wanders! I'm Darcy, the wanderer and writer for all things Darcy Wanders.

I love hiking, camping, paddling, and wandering new places! When I'm not wandering, I turn to books, puzzles, and dreaming up plans for my next epic adventure.

I believe the outdoors is for everyone and created Darcy Wanders as a way to share incredible hikes, gear recommendations, and educate on things such as trail etiquette and leave no trace principles. 

happy wandering!

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