Hiking and Hot Springs - Salt Creek Falls and McCredie Hot Springs

Trail Info: Salt Creek Falls is Oregon's second tallest waterfall, at 286'.  The hike is a 6 mile out and back loop, with 750' of elevation gain.  The trail will take us over a log bridge spanning Salt Creek, before climbing slightly to an overlook of the canyon below.  From there, we will pass by Too Much Bear Lake, before heading down to a beautiful lunch spot at Diamond Creek Falls.  After taking a lunch, and some pictures, we will head up to Fall Creek Falls, and then head out along another trail, which will make a loop.  The scenic hike is rated as easy to moderate, and can be found on page 232 in William L. Sullivan's Forth Edition of "100 Hikes in the Central Oregon Cascades". Sullivan's books are well used by local hikers, and can be found at most REI stores, as well as Barnes and Noble.

Where: Salt Creek Falls is located 5 miles west of Willamette Pass, and about 20 miles past Oakridge. Salt Creek Falls is about 62 miles from Eugene.  McCredie Hot Springs is located near milepost 45, along Highway 58.  There are also some hot springs on the other side of the creek.  Those springs you can get to by taking a forest road to the other side, and then hiking in along the creek.

When: Sunday, September 21.

Directions: From I-5 take Exit 188A for Oakridge. Follow HWY 58 through the small town of Oakridge. Just past the tunnel, at milepost 57, turn right at the sign for Salt Creek Falls. Keep to the right at junctions, as you follow the road in to a paved parking lot, with bathrooms and a information kiosk.  The falls are located just down a short path, but the hiking trail starts at the far end of the parking lot.  

Details: We will hike in 1.8 miles to Diamond Creek Falls, where we can take a short snack, or our lunch, depending on time. After the short break we will continue 1.3 miles up to the cascading waters of Fall Creek Falls. After enjoying our time there, taking some pictures, and relaxing a bit, we will return on the trail, making a loop back to the trailhead. After the hike, those that want to relax in the hot springs will take the road back to HWY 58, and take a left, and head about 18 miles down the highway to a small parking lot on the left. The hot springs are located down a short path from the parking lot, following the creek. Those that would like to just head home, or grab dinner in Oakridge, can do so. After soaking in the hot springs, we will enjoy a dinner together in Oakridge and make our way back home.

Contact: Matthew Howell - (541)[masked]

Forest Service: Middle Fork Ranger District - (541)[masked]

Requirements and Suggestions: All hikers must bring at least two liters of water with them for the hike along with snacks or a lunch. I know some hikers feel comfortable hiking with less water, but it's what I'm asking of those going. I have had to deal with unprepared individuals on hikes, so I always make sure other hikers are well hydrated and carry some type of food. Thank you for the understanding. I highly recommend quick drying clothing, such as synthetics, and avoiding all cotton, as it is worthless once wet. Please dress in layers, and bring a layer of insulation, such as a fleece jacket or light down, and rain gear. Pack a small lunch along with some snacks that are high in protein. It will help you along for the endurance of the hike. Waterproof hiking boots or shoes are highly recommended, and a spare pair of socks in your pack is always a wise choice. Remember to pack your 10 Essentials as well.

Carpooling: We will carpool from Best Buy, so those needing rides please bring money to chip in for gas and the parking fee. Hopefully we can take just a few cars, which saves us all money on gas, and limits the amount of cars at the trailheads.

Parking and Regulations: Salt Creek Falls requires the Northwest Forest Pass at the trailhead. This pass is available for $30 at REI and other sporting goods stores. It covers your parking at most trailheads throughout the Northwest for one full year. A day fee of $5 for those without the pass, but the trailhead may be missing the dropbox for the fee. So the Northwest Forest Pass would be the safest way to go.

Disclaimer: McCredie Hot Springs is a clothing optional hot spring, that is along Salt Creek. They have added restrooms and a better parking lot, and more improvements are planned for the future.  You can now use the restrooms for changing of clothing.  There are also more hot springs on the other side of the creek.  With it being a clothing optional hot spring, nudity is common. Those choosing to enjoy the hot springs, I ask that you respect those around you, as well as those in the group. Please be considerate and respectful as we share the hot springs. Bring a swimsuit and towel if you would like.


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  • Jennifer O.

    I had a great time, thanks everyone, and thanks Matt for organizing it.

    2 · September 22

    • Matthew H.

      Glad you enjoyed the trip, and thanks for the compliment.

      September 22

  • Sandor L.

    Matt and crew, thank you for a great hike and posting the pictures. Here's our map from AllTrails: http://alltrails.com/tracks/sal...­

    3 · September 22

    • Matthew H.

      Thanks for sharing your knowledge of the local mushrooms, and being so helpful. Greatly appreciated.

      September 22

  • Jo

    Great Pictures!

    1 · September 22

  • Vanessa

    I have some things that have come up that I need to take care of tomorrow . Sorry to bail, but I hope to make it next time. Have fun!

    1 · September 20

    • Matthew H.

      Hope to see you another time as well.

      September 21

  • Dan A.

    sorry I have to cancel. I was supposed to go whale watching today(sat) and the sea was to rough and had to reschedule for sun...sorry.

    1 · September 20

    • Matthew H.

      Hope you enjoyed your whale watching trip.

      September 21

  • charles e.

    Hey Matt,
    Twisted my ankle Sat. Evening, so figured I better error on the side of caution and rest up.
    Catch you next time!
    Chuck

    1 · September 21

    • Matthew H.

      Hope your ankle feels better soon. See you another time.

      1 · September 21

  • Jo

    Matthew - Dan and I will be carpooling together. We will go directly to the trailhead. We'll make sure we are there no later than 9:15am. We may have another person signing up who will come with us as well.

    1 · September 19

    • Jo

      Matthew-sorry have to bail, the whale watchhing excursion i was going on today reescheduled to tomorrow. i hope to meet upp with you guys on a future hike.

      1 · September 20

  • Michael S.

    Hey, anyone else coming from near downtown Eugene? I was wondering if anyone might be up for carpooling to rendezvous point, in exchange for extra gas money of course!

    September 15

    • Matthew H.

      Another time, Michael. Also, congrats on the promotion.

      1 · September 19

    • Kathleen B.

      No problem, maybe I'll catch ya next time.

      1 · September 20

  • Dan A.

    Where is the best buy? I am coming down from Mcminnville

    September 19

    • Matthew H.

      For future reference, Best Buy is just off exit 195 from I - 5. Coming from the north, take the first exit for Eugene, come to a light and turn left, heading towards Springfield. At the light at Gateway, turn right, and get in the right lane as soon as possible. You will turn right again at the first light. There will be a Panda Express on the corner, as well as a Starbucks. Follow that in towards Best Buy. We park as far out from the store as possible. You should see a group of us right by where you must enter the parking lot for the store.

      1 · September 19

  • Jennifer O.

    Salt creek or Diamond Creek sound good. I've done Mt. Fuji on snowshoes and I'm not sure if I'd personally be up for that on a hot day.

    1 · September 18

    • Matthew H.

      I will try to add a hike to Fuji Mountain in October. Also, come winter, I plan to snowshoe the trails.

      September 19

  • Matthew H.

    The trip has been updated, and changed, to Salt Creek Falls. The mileage is the same, with just a bit more elevation for this hike. Also some very scenic waterfalls to enjoy. Definitely bring your camera. Please update your RSVP, if you are not interested in the new hike. Thank you, and I'll see you all tomorrow!

    2 · September 19

  • Vanessa

    Anyone driving from Corvallis? Would love to carpool and pitch in for gas. Thanks!

    September 19

    • Matthew H.

      Monique lives up that way. You should send her a message.

      1 · September 19

    • Monique

      I live in Corvallis.

      2 · September 19

  • Vanessa

    Can anyone tell me what the 10 Essentials are? New-ish to all-day hikes. Thank you!

    1 · September 18

    • Matthew H.

      Vanessa, thank you for asking, and wanting to know, as well as be prepared. Many of the items needed are things you may already have. No need to run out and buy a new GPS or high end items. I even have extra gear I can loan out on trips. I have many extra headlamps, and even a few maps of the area. The most important thing, in my opinion, is bring enough water, and know how to use each essential. I can help you with any other question you may have. Also, thank you, Monique.

      1 · September 18

    • Vanessa

      Thank you Matt and Monique for your help!

      2 · September 19

  • Matthew H.

    With the forest fire in Oakridge, I will be watching to see if we will be able to go to Larison Creek even. The Deception Complex fire has been going for awhile now, and due to high temperatures and wind, it has spread. If I feel it is unsafe to be at Larison Creek, we will instead find a hike farther up the highway. Options include Salt Creek Falls to Diamond Creek Falls, the shorter route to Fuji Mountain, as well as others I know of in the area. Thank you for being understanding. I will try to post the changes by Friday, September 19th.

    September 12

    • Jo

      I would like to vote for Salt Creek/Diamond Creek. I love waterfalls.

      2 · September 19

    • Vanessa

      I also vote for Salt Creek/Diamond Creek :)

      1 · September 19

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