Terwilliger Hot Springs

Cougar Reservoir

Willamette Foothills, Oregon

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Terwilliger Hot Springs


  • A view of Cougar Reservoir from the parking lot.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Fall colors are apprent across the reservoir.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Rider Creek Falls is visible as you reach the parking lot.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The falls are a beautiful backdrop as you start your short hike from the trailhead.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The trail weaves through beautiful old-growth forest.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Moss adorns most surfaces under the canopy above.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The trail is well maintained and relatively flat.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Two changing areas/restrooms are available at the edge of the hot springs.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The tiered pools provide temperature options for soakers.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Rock shelves in most pools allow soakers to choose their depth.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The lowest pool is often coolest and the least busy.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Unidentified species (help us identify it by providing feedback).- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • Looking up from the lower pools, you can see the tiered pools along the edge of Rider Creek.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The source of the hot water flows from a natural cave at the top of the highest pool.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The entry is usually staffed to help provide information and accept payment.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
  • The parking lot is small and may require creative maneuvering.- Terwilliger Hot Springs
Overview + Weather
Variety of good water temperatures. Well-maintained.
Often crowded. Fee for use.
Willamette Foothills, OR
0.25 mi (0.40 km)
Number of pools: 
Parking Pass: 
Day Use
Current Local Weather:
Hot Spring Description

Hot Spring Description


Terwilliger Hot Springs is a well-maintained, natural-feeling hot springs near Cougar Reservoir along the Mackenzie River. The hot water that feeds the springs flows from a cave source at the top of six tiered pools. As a result, each successive pool is slightly cooler in temperature than the one above it. A nearby stream also helps cool the hot water, giving visitors plenty of options for their soaking experience.

The hot springs are a 1/4-mile hike from the parking lot at Cougar Reservoir. The trail is relatively flat and well kept. You'll have a great view of Rider Creek Waterfall at the trailhead, where it spills into a pond along the edge of the reservoir. Your short hike will take you through mossy old-growth forest, and the steam of the pools is quickly visible after a few twists and turns.

There are two restrooms/changing facilities that are as moss-covered as the surrounding trees. There is also a covered shelf area to store clothing, shoes, bags and gear that is visible from the pools. 

Be careful moving in and around the pools, as the rocks can be slippery due to the moisture in the air. 

Clothing is optional at the hot springs (but required at the trailhead and along the trail), and it's common to find bathers making full use of this freedom. No alcohol or glass is allowed at the springs. The cost to visit the pools is $6 per person, which can be paid to the attendant at the trailhead.

Note that the pools are drained and cleaned weekly by volunteers who maintain the site. The cleaning usually occurs on Thursday mornings before 11 a.m. Please be aware the pools may not be available at this time. The pools take roughly an hour to refill after cleaning.

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(50 within a 30 mile radius)

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(132 within a 30 mile radius)

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