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Koosah Falls

McKenzie River

Willamette Foothills, Oregon

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Koosah Falls

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  • The entrance is shared with Ice Cap Campground.- Koosah Falls
  • Vault toilets at the Koosah Falls parking area.- Koosah Falls
  • The trail to the falls viewpoint is gradual and accessible.- Koosah Falls
  • The trail to the falls viewpoint is gradual and accessible.- Koosah Falls
  • Koosah Falls viewpoint.- Koosah Falls
  • Koosah Falls.- Koosah Falls
  • Koosah Falls.- Koosah Falls
  • Looking down from the viewpoint at the top of the falls.- Koosah Falls
  • Looking down from the viewpoint at the top of the falls.- Koosah Falls
  • Gnarly wood on the trail between Koosah and Sahalie Falls.- Koosah Falls
  • Gnarly water on the trail between Koosah and Sahalie Falls.- Koosah Falls
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Incredible falls. Fully accessible walkway and views. Educational panels. Close to other adventures.
Cons: 
Crowds.
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Region:
Willamette Foothills, OR
Congestion: 
High
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
Not Required
Points of Interest:
Viewpoint, Old growth forest, Geologically significant, Waterfall
Dogs allowed: 
Yes
Current Local Weather:
Powered by Dark Sky

Today

Foggy in the evening.
55°F
39°

Wed

Mostly cloudy throughout the day.
60°F
46°

Thu

Rain throughout the day.
49°F
40°

Fri

Mixed precipitation (4–7 in. of snow) until evening, starting again overnight.
41°F
36°

Sat

Rain throughout the day and windy starting in the evening.
54°F
42°

Sun

Rain in the morning.
58°F
50°

Mon

Partly cloudy in the morning.
69°F
49°
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Team

Koosah Falls is the second of the three falls the McKenzie River makes in the first few miles from its headwaters in Clear Lake.  Koosah is a Chinook word interpreted as meaning either “sky” or “shining,” and both apply when the falls are considered against Sahalie Falls farther upstream.  Where Sahalie Falls rumbles away in a tight portion of the valley, hemmed in by basalt and old-growth, Koosah Falls works in a much more expansive area that is open to the sky and sun.  Koosah is a block falls, meaning it falls as one stream (Sahalie is segmented into two or three streams), and at 64 feet, Koosah comes in a close second to Sahalie in terms of height.  Both are gorgeous in their own way, of course; Sahalie seems enormous in its closed-in environment, and Koosah feels somewhat more appropriately scaled to its broader landscape.

Hike the short trail between Koosah Falls and Sahalie Falls to appreciate the comparisons for yourself.  The trail is less than a mile and sticks to the banks of one of the wildest sections of this incredible river.  It winds through beautiful old-growth Douglas fir, hemlock, cedar, and the lush understory of mosses and ferns.  The hike is excellent year-round, as are all the walks on the McKenzie River trail.  Like Sahalie Falls, the facilities at Koosah Falls are universally accessible and offer vault toilets and interpretive panels describing the geology of the area. 
 

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Map

Field Guide + Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(57 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(112 within a 30 mile radius)

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