A hidden gem in the dense coastal forests of southwest Oregon, Golden and Silver Falls State Natural Area may be hard to find, but it's well worth the 24-mile drive from Highway 101. The small parking and picnic area are located along the banks of Glenn and Silver Creeks and is shaded by large maple, alder, and Oregon myrtle trees. Hiking trails wind through scenic canyons to each of the waterfalls -- they plunge over sheer rock cliffs to moss covered boulders 100 feet below. Hike to the top of Golden Falls to get an eagle's-eye view of the cascading waterfall and giant old-growth firs and cedars.
It's a great trail. A lot of history on this old road/hike trail. Short distance but great viewing of both falls. It's even great for dogs and small children if closely watched due to the abrupt drop off edges of the trail. I would rate it a 4 or 5 if they would fix the main road to the trail head.
Some tips regarding access and trail directions for these wonderful hikes; First, the actual road closure is not at the parking lot / sign; you can keep going by car (thru concrete barriers) and roughly cut in half your hike in to the trail head (bringing it to approx just under a mile); parking to the side of the road there is possible, if there are not more than a handful of cars. Second, the trail directions on the board at the head indicate two options for the Golden Falls; lower and upper (see photo other review), however, immediately after the bridge at the start of the trail there is a split without any indication as to which is what. Take the right for the lower (short) to the bottom of the fall; and be prepared for a little moderate climbing at the fall to get a good view (the extent depends on your gusto). Other than that the trails are 15 to 20 mins round trip, and easy. Watch for banana slugs crossing the trails, so as not to step on them. For the last 5-10 miles drive in; drive slow, approx 20 mph with a regular car, since the gravel road has many potholes, some pretty deep. Pickup or SUV is preferable, if you have a choice. Agree with others here, that it is a pity the park and access to it has been neglected, but is still very worth-wile (maybe even better due to its access restrictions, as it ensures a quiet experience).
Danielle C. on Golden and Silver Falls
I hiked up here a couple weeks ago with my dog. It was not nearly as long of a trail as I was expecting, but it was still worth it! The falls are absolutely beautiful! It's a great, short hike for any skill level.
MeLisa P. on Golden and Silver Falls
Candy C. on Golden and Silver Falls
Road still closed about 1.7 miles from the trail head. Watch out for large trees down across the trail to the Silver Falls, still able to get close to the waterfall though.
Worth the drive out to see them
I hiked in from the last road closure sign (parked at the turnaround), and this park is still very much accessible (other people drove, though I wouldn't risk it - one of the pictures shows where the right side of the road is washed out when driving in). It is about 1.5 miles from the concrete barriers to the trail heads and each one to the lower falls is a short jaunt. I didn't hit the upper falls trail (maybe next time), but even during this severe drought, both falls were flowing. It is a very pretty area and the trails are not overgrown. There is also a bathroom at the trail head. The directions on the AllTrails app sent me to the right at the split, which only goes to private property (clearly marked no trespassing), so stay to the left where you see the signs for golden and silver falls.