Scenic USA - Oregon

South Falls

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South Falls - Silver Falls State Park

Photos by Denny Barnes
Denny's Betterphoto Gallery

     Not far from the capital city, a string of ten remarkable waterfalls are spaced out among the Silver Creek canyons, creating one of Oregonís most popular state parks. This dramatic view of South Falls offers a beautiful sampler from the picturesque Silver Creek State Park. Less than an hourís drive from Salem, the two South Falls in Winter forks of Silver Creek have sliced a passageway through a thick outer shell of basalt, creating this delightful canyonland of scenic waterfalls.
     Located in the Willamette Valley among a temperate rainforest, the Silver Creek area was rescued by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Part of a Civilian Conservation Corps restoration project, young men of the corps repaired what the lumbering industry left behind; a land with nothing but tree stumps. CCC efforts saw the replanting trees, constructing a lodge, and building a trail system along the north and south forks of Silver Creek.
     Here on the Trail of Tens Falls, visitors descend over footpaths lined with ferns, mosses and wildflowers. Overhead, moss covered hemlocks and cedars provide the perfect perches for a wide variety of birds. The Canyon Trail, requiring a three to five hour hike, leads guests to the entire treasury of waterfalls, ranging from majestic 177 foot South Falls to the delicate cascade of Drake Falls. Half the waterfalls in the park plunge more than a hundred feet. In this view, showing a pathway behind the falls, a large grotto has formed underneath the waterfallís rim, displaying the powerful forces of Silver Creek. The line of visitors under the falls hints at the parkís popularity as well as the scale of this majestic waterfall.

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