After two failed attempts to find Kentucky Falls, I finally made it to this beautiful forested hike deep in the Siuslaw National Forest. Featuring three tumbling waterfalls, the Kentucky Falls trail is a fantastic 4-mile half-day hike that follows a bubbling creek through the shade of lush trees. An out and back trail that starts with a steady downhill climb, the hikes showcases some of Oregon’s best cascading water. (One more Bucket List hike checked off!)
Located about an hour and half drive west of Eugene, the real challenge with this hike is the drive. With its utter remoteness, you must traverse old and current logging roads to cut over a ridge in the Coastal Mountain range to stumble across the trail head. The adventurous search and seclusion of this hike though is what makes it so great!
TIP: The key to getting to these falls is to track your miles with every turn.
From Eugene, take Highway 126 west towards the coast. Turn left at the Whittaker Creek sign, about 32 miles from Beltline and West 11th. Travel 1.5 miles and turn right over a bridge. Drive another 1.6 miles and veer left onto the uphill Dunn Ridge Road. Drive 7.3 miles to the end of the pavement and turn Left onto Knowles Creek Road. After 2.9 miles you’ll reach a “Y” intersection. Stay to the right and continue for another 1.7 miles to paved road #23. Turn right here and go 2.6 miles to the Kentucky Falls trail head. Some of these roads are a bit potholed, so go slow and be careful.
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