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Cascadia Cave

Cascadia State Park

Willamette Foothills, Oregon

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Cascadia Cave

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  • The group gathering to go on a guided hike to Cascadia Cave.- Cascadia Cave
  • One of the stops during the hike to Cascadia Cave.- Cascadia Cave
  • It's an easy to moderate hike to Cascadia Cave.- Cascadia Cave
  • Exploring the rock art at Cascadia Cave.- Cascadia Cave
  • Finding the rock art at Cascadia Cave.- Cascadia Cave
  • Rock art at Cascadia Cave in the Willamette Valley.- Cascadia Cave
  • Cascadia Cave is well known for its rock art/petroglyphs.- Cascadia Cave
  • Some people painted the petroglyphs to make them stand out.- Cascadia Cave
  • Cascadia Cave petroglyphs in the Willamette Valley.- Cascadia Cave
  • Cascadia Cave petroglyphs in the Willamette Valley.- Cascadia Cave
  • Cascadia Cave petroglyphs in the Willamette Valley.- Cascadia Cave
  • Cascadia Cave petroglyphs.- Cascadia Cave
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Rock art.
Cons: 
Only viewable through a guided tour.
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Region:
Willamette Foothills, OR
Congestion: 
Moderate
Pets allowed: 
No
Parking Pass: 
Other
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Pro Contributor

The Kalapuya and Molalla people have lived in the Willamette Valley since long before the arrival of settlers in the early 19th century, and their rock art is still visible at Cascadia Cave. Located on the South Fork of the Santiam River, this area is both culturally and geologically significant.

The cave, which is actually a shallow rock shelter, is the perfect refuge from the rainy weather, and it is a spiritual site where indigenous people would gather. Some of the rock art includes what looks like bear claw marks. Starting in the 1930s, archaeologists have excavated the site and found artifacts dating back to almost 8,000 years ago.

In 1990 Cascadia Cave was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is located on private land, and the land owners allow the Sweet Home Ranger District to lead guided tours of the site. Over the years people have carved their initials into the wall and even painted the petroglyphs to make them stand out more. Help protect the site by only visiting with a guide, taking only pictures, and refrain from touching the cave walls. Touching or taking rubbings of the petroglyphs can cause damage.

The hike is about 2 miles round trip from the day use area  at Cascadia State Park. The site is on private land and is only accessible through guided tours with an archaeologist and guide. The guides provide a wealth of information, describe the history of the area as you hike, and interpret the rock art at the cave. Even if you had the option to explore on your own, you wouldn’t want to. Be sure to bring a camera!

Tours are offered through the Sweet Home Ranger District.

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Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(28 within a 30 mile radius)

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(60 within a 30 mile radius)

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