Drake Falls, Oregon

When deciding what waterfall to discuss next, I choose waterfalls randomly in order to get a good variety of different locations. The first waterfall I talked about in Silver Falls State Park was Twin Falls, which is one of my least favorite falls in the park. Drake Falls, the waterfall of interest here, is another of my least favorite falls in the park. The more exciting falls in the park are to come!

Drake Falls is wide. It’s not very tall, but oh well. You can’t get a really great view of the falls, and even then, it’s not that distinct. Looking at pictures of Twin Falls and Drake Falls, I realized that it’s actually difficult to even tell the two falls apart. The other falls in the park are just more unique and interesting.

Directions:

  1. From Salem, drive east on US-22 to the junction of US-22 and OR-214.
  2. Head north on OR-214 for 15 miles, following the numerous signs to Silver Falls State Park.
  3. You can park at either the South Falls or North Falls parking areas. The South Falls parking area is larger, and the Waterfall Trail leads you past all of the falls.

Accessibility: 6/10 (moderate)
Height: 27′
Length of Hike: 8.7 miles round-trip (to see all waterfalls in the park)

Drake Falls in Silver Falls State Park (May 2010)

Where in the World is Drake Falls?

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Twin Falls, Oregon

I get to start my discussion of Silver Falls State Park with one of my least favorite falls in the park. Silver Falls State Park is definitely a place every waterfall enthusiast must visit. There are ten or eleven NAMED falls, and anywhere from 5-10 UNNAMED falls, depending on how you define a waterfall.

Twin Falls, which I’m not even sure where the name came from, considering I didn’t see two falls, is one of the least spectacular falls in the park. It has nothing to do with height or width or anything of that sort. There are smaller and thinner waterfalls that have more character than this drop. It’s pretty, but there really isn’t a great view to be had. Oh well…visit for the other falls and add this one to the list.

The waterfalls can all be accessed relatively easily by the Ten Waterfalls trail. Twin Falls is about halfway along the trail, and so it doesn’t really matter whether you park at the North Falls or South Falls parking lot. Be aware that the roundtrip on the trail is about 8 miles, but it surprisingly manageable.

Directions:

  1. From Salem, drive east on US-22 to the junction of US-22 and OR-214.
  2. Head north on OR-214 for 15 miles, following the numerous signs to Silver Falls State Park.
  3. You can park at either the South Falls or North Falls parking areas. The South Falls parking area is larger, and the Waterfall Trail leads you past all of the falls.

Accessibility: 6/10 (moderate)
Height: 31′
Length of Hike: 8.7 miles round-trip (to see all waterfalls in the park)

Twin Falls in Silver Falls State Park (May 2010)

Where in the World is Twin Falls?

Foster Falls, Tennessee

Foster Falls from the easily-accessible viewpoint (December 2009)

On the list of Tennessee waterfalls, Foster Falls is a must. It’s not the tallest or the widest in the state, but it is one of the easiest to visit. It also offers a great study in how different viewpoints can lead to such different impressions of a waterfall.

There are multiple different ways to view Foster Falls. The closest to the parking area is a viewing platform that provides a more than acceptable viewpoint of the waterfall, though you are surprisingly far from the falls at that point. The second viewpoint, which I did not pursue, would be to hike to the base of the falls, the trail head of which is found near that platform. I’m guessing the hike down is not very simple, as you are dropping a considerable amount of elevation in a rather short distance.

The third viewpoint is found almost 180 degrees opposite the viewing platform, and requires a short hike to get to. This viewpoint is not advertised, though it is also found directly on the Fiery Gizzard Trail. From the parking lot, start out on the Fiery Gizzard Trail. You’ll walk directly over the creek that turns into Horsehair Falls, assuming there is water flowing. After that, you’ll cross the bridge that goes directly above the river that turns into Foster Falls. A short hike after that, and you’ll come across the third viewpoint. This viewpoint does NOT have any fencing or barrier, so be extremely careful. There is a 60+ foot drop involved. You can get surprisingly good views here, though, and you also get a double treat. Horsehair Falls can be viewed with Foster Falls simultaneously.

Directions:

  1. Travel along US-41 in between Jasper and Tracy City. Driving north from Jasper, the turn toward Foster Falls Natural Area will be on your left after about 7.5 miles. It is almost equidistant from Tracy City.
  2. The road will lead directly to the parking area for the natural area and the Fiery Gizzard trail head.
  3. From the parking lot, follow the sounds of the falls.

Accessibility: 10/10 (viewing platform), 9/10 (alternate viewpoint)
Height: 60′
Length of Hike: 0.2 miles round-trip

Another view of the falls after hiking along the Fiery Gizzard Trail

Where in the World is Foster Falls?