Explore the most popular camping trails in Willamette National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great hike with incredible views. We went on a clear day we could see mount hood and the three sisters. It’s a bit steep at the end but totally worth it. The area where the cave was is completely burnt. However, still highly recommend!

This trail was not bad, however I felt the need to constantly watch my step during most sections to avoid rocks and tree roots. The hike isn’t strenuous until the switchbacks at the end and the rewarding views at the top make it all worth it. Bring more water than you think. The trail to Boca cave was very dusty and dirty due to the remnants of the fire. I had my 14 year old and 10 year old and the cave “trail” gave me some mom anxiety. Haha. It’s very steep and slippery. Coming out of the cave was wet and very steep for the first section. I recommend traction shoes. We were all very dirty at the end, but what an amazing view!

This is a great hike with amazing views of Mt. Jefferson and other cascade mountains. It isn't usually packed with people, which is nice. The forest is beautiful and you get a treat at the top with plenty of private spaces to sit and view. If one was inclined, there is plenty of tent space at the top too. Since the burn, we didn't hike down to the cave this trip. It is a sad site to look out on all the burned up forest, but beautiful all the same. This hike is a good workout, but easy enough for anyone in decent shape.

Made it up in 45 minutes just in time for sunset! Beautiful hike, views and setting!

on Opal Creek Trail

hiking
10 days ago

Gorgeous hike but could use some signage to guide you to the actual falls. Had a great hike and loved the natural slide.

I loved this trail! I started at Opal Creek Campground which provides you with a couple easy miles before the incline starts. So much beauty! Like being in a fairy land! Lush forest and crystal clear green/blue waters. Plenty of side paths to go down to the river and swim. The incline is a great workout. Bringing a friend back here to do it again

12 days ago

gnarly ass cliff jumping at opal pools bro

Another one of my favorites I've discovered after moving here a couple of months ago. Good hike with moderate incline and light traffic. long drive up the side road to get there but well worth it. would do again

Great hike! Got there around 11:30 and there was still parking on a Sunday. Made the mistake of branching off too early in hopes to find the cave (wait until you’re practically on the peak) but that turned into a nice rock climbing trip! Trail to the cave is very dusty from the fires and the trees radiate some heat still. Saw only about 5 people the entire time. Would recommend

backpacking
13 days ago

We hiked through Jawbone flats on the way in and on the way out we took the trail on the other side of the river. Very easy hike in as most of it was on a dirt road. We were there on a weekday so we hardly saw anyone the whole time. Although we did hear from the one person we saw that the pools had up to 60 people in them. We just swam by our campsite in the little pools there and we had a great time. We were all alone. Our boys played on the water slide and they loved that. They had it all to themselves. Our black lab had the roughest go on the trip. Wasps and yellow jackets kept attacking him ferociously. Overall we liked the trip. We had fun.

What a spectacular hike! The trail begins with a pretty steady incline for the first 2 miles, but it's worth it and doable. Very few mosquitoes. Really only saw them on the first half mile or so and then never thought about them again. Still a few wild flowers left up in the higher country. Make sure to find the side trail to see Marion falls. It's spectacular! I would definitely recommend this hike! Absolutely stunning views and gorgeous waterfalls.

on Marion Lake Trail

hiking
15 days ago

Lovely hike. A bit of a climb, and the berry branches got pretty close in a spot or two, but the trail was not steep, too wet, rocky, or washed out. On the way up in the morning, there were few people but a lot of mosquitoes, especially below Lake Ann. At Marion Lake, saw a lot of burned out areas, which were turning green. On the way down in the early afternoon heat the mosquitoes were gone but there were a lot of people and dogs coming up the trail. Parking was still ok though. The trailhead has a pit toilet.

Great Hike with spectacular views. Cave is tricky to find. You’ll need to go up to your left about 0.1 mile before reaching the trail peak.(we actually found it on the way back down which would be on your right). A rock with “cave” and and arrow points the way from the trail (see photos added to this site). Hike up about 200 feet, head toward the right where you will see the burned out forest. Cave is down and around burned out area..(around to the left) Dusty, ashy hike but very worth it!

hiking
17 days ago

The hike is long and goes up and down hills, but flat sometimes. Nice forrest hike in the summer! Jawbone flats was super cool same with all the old mining equipment and closed mining shafts around! Frigid, clear, emerald waters are sooooo inviting on hot days. Go early to beat the crowds and parking is a b*tchhhhhhh if you come later then 10, have to park on side of road about 1/2 mile from trail head sometimes further. Theres plenty of off trail swim spots as well as the labeled ones, but just as worth it. PLEASE TAKE OUT THE TRASH YOU BRING IN. It is so heartbreaking to see so much litter and access if difficult to road for maintenance to clean up so PLEASE, TAKE YOUR TRASH WITH YOU.
Anyways, all and all, the water was sooooo rewarding afterwards.
Totally worth the work and the drive out!

hiking
17 days ago

Beautiful scenery!! The rocky trail is hard on the feet. I wish we would have kept going towards the education center and Jawbone instead of taking the 1.3 mile trail off to the right because that trail is brutal!

Trail incline increased noticeably over the last portion of the path but what a wonderful view at the end! Path to the cave is through an old burn. Had to follow footprints in the ash/dust. We didn’t have any trouble but I can imagine if you were the first one after a rain It might be hard. The framed view from the cave is very unique.

So I tried to find the cave but was unsuccessful, when I took the right path (triangulation peak) it dead ends to the peak, where do I go from here?

hiking
18 days ago

This trail was somewhat disappointing. I made it to slide falls before turning back. Heavily trafficked on a Friday from 12-3 pm. Lots of kids, lots of their parents asking for directions. I was frequently stuck behind large, slow moving groups.

Three stars because as suggested in the comments, the waterfall under the first bridge was really nice. Make the steep hike down, turn right right before the bridge. Nobody else was down there despite the place having almost 50 cars in the lot. The water is a really pretty blue. I would go back to this spot and not make the rest of the hike.

hiking
18 days ago

Long hike, beautiful waters, some swimming spots

hiking
19 days ago

camped at Big Lake to enjoy swimming and soon discovered Patjen trail head.

depending on which direction of loop you take you will do part of the hike through a old forest burn. great to see all the new plant life already flourishing.

Pleasantly surprised to see some of the Cascade mountains at one point, and came across three small lakes. mosquito repellent was definitely necessary.

Hike to a trail junction and head right that’s labeled “triangulation peak”. From that sign you’ll go up nearly 0.7 miles to another (unlabeled) trail junction. To the right is a very short distance to the peak. To the left you make your way down some burned trees about 0.3 miles and take a left around the large rock cliff to get to Boca Cave!

Happy to park a car at both ends without a permit. Not too many hikers between the falls and Blue Pool. Not many bikers either. Love the log bridges along the way. Hiked it again this year. A real treat!

Phenomenal! Definitely a moderate hike. I found the trail marked 3372 fairly easily. There’s really only one fork, and it has a sign. Boca Cave was pretty easy to find as well. Did it with my pup, she loved it. Verizon service at the top fyi. It’s definitely on my go to list now.

the way to do this is really to hike out to cedar flats, camp overnight, then reward yourself on the walk back with a dip in the creek on a hot day, if you ask me! the gravel road really does cause some foot pain and feels like a trudge, so heads up on that. weekends may be hard to find parking or secluded spots. will definitely return for an overnight again. easy hike with a few obstacles like scooting across fallen trees on a cliffside if you take the trail out to cedar flats, but well marked and well maintained regardless.

This was a lovely hike. This hike is super easy to access and starts right off US-20, no long dirt roads or high clearance vehicles needed. First three miles are through beautiful blooming wildflower meadows. The trail is a bit dusty and exposed as you are hiking through a previous burn zone. Vegetation is growing but most of the new trees are under 10 feet tall. Our intention was to camp around Duffy lake but once we reached Santiam Lake (about 5-5.5 miles in) we saw that there were only a handful of campsite still open. We opted to snatch one up versus betting that Duffy would still have some. We are SO GLAD we camped at Santiam Lake as the next morning we continued the hiked to Duffy. We found Santiam to be so much more serene and easier to access the lake. Both lakes were warm and great spots to fish (literally tons of fish jumping out of the water). The Rangers were very active in this area and visited our campsite 3 times, which we found slightly excessive, especially since we were abiding by all regulations. They would just stop to check in. There are a TON of mosquitoes in the area so make sure to pack good bug spray.

Rocks, roots and river, Oh my!
Beautiful swimming spots. Few places packed with people but the trail on other side river.
Good training hike and carried full packs. 9 miles.
One couple reported seeing a small black bear. Few people stung by black bee. No mosquitoes.

Great hike, will be doing this one again!

hiking
28 days ago

Beautiful hike! Be prepared to drive over five miles on a gravel road to get there; our rental SUV was just the ticket. Parking could be an issue on the weekend, we saw about 20 cars there on a Tuesday. Although we weren’t alone, we didn’t feel that it was too crowded by any means.
Just before two miles, start looking to the right of the trail. When you see a bunch of old rusty machinery, follow your ears to the right to get to the first swimming hole, a beautiful waterfall with clear, cool pools beneath. It’s a steep scramble to get down but totally worthwhile. Two tenths of a mile further, the path forks at a sign. Both trails end at the Opal Pool, another beautiful swimming hole. The left fork is about 1.1 miles and goes through an old mining town (now an educational center) and the right fork goes through forest on a steep and narrow path. There is a sign on the right fork which states that it is 1.3 miles to Opal Pool, but it is really much farther. Keep walking until you see the bridge, and if you want you can return the other way in which you came.
Loved it and and will come back.

hiking
30 days ago

Awesome hike filled with nature beauty of mountains, woods and pools.

Narrow trail, full of roots and rocks, steep in sections, but really lush & green and beautiful views of the river. Take a dip to cool off at Three Pools before you turn around to return to the TH.

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