Silver Falls State Park is a state park in the U.S. state of Oregon, located near Silverton, about 20 miles (32 km) east-southeast of Salem. It is the largest state park in Oregon with an area of more than 9,000 acres (36 km2), and it includes more than 24 miles (39 km) of walking trails, 14 miles (23 km) of horse trails, and a 4-mile (6.4 km) bike path. Its 8.7-mile (14.0 km) Canyon Trail/Trail of Ten Falls runs along the banks of Silver Creek and by ten waterfalls, from which the park received its name. Four of the ten falls have an amphitheater-like surrounding that allows the trail to pass behind the flow of the falls. The Silver Falls State Park Concession Building Area and the Silver Creek Youth Camp-Silver Falls State Park are separately listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

The park's most visited waterfall is South Falls, a 177-foot (54 m) cascade. Remote Double Falls, however, is liste...Read more

Silver Falls State Park is a state park in the U.S. state of Oregon, located near Silverton, about 20 miles (32 km) east-southeast of Salem. It is the largest state park in Oregon with an area of more than 9,000 acres (36 km2), and it includes more than 24 miles (39 km) of walking trails, 14 miles (23 km) of horse trails, and a 4-mile (6.4 km) bike path. Its 8.7-mile (14.0 km) Canyon Trail/Trail of Ten Falls runs along the banks of Silver Creek and by ten waterfalls, from which the park received its name. Four of the ten falls have an amphitheater-like surrounding that allows the trail to pass behind the flow of the falls. The Silver Falls State Park Concession Building Area and the Silver Creek Youth Camp-Silver Falls State Park are separately listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

The park's most visited waterfall is South Falls, a 177-foot (54 m) cascade. Remote Double Falls, however, is listed as the highest waterfall in the park, plunging 178 feet (54 m) in a small tributary side canyon deep within the Silver Creek Canyon.

In recent years, Silver Falls State Park has hosted star parties in partnership with the amateur astronomy organization in Salem, Oregon called Night Sky 45.

Silver Falls State Park Concession Building Area
U.S. National Register of Historic Places
U.S. Historic district
 
Silver Falls Lodge
Nearest citySublimity, OregonBuilt1934ArchitectJ. Elwood IstedNRHP reference No.83002164[1]
Silver Creek Youth Camp – Silver Falls State Park
U.S. National Register of Historic Places
U.S. Historic district
Nearest citySublimity, OregonCoordinates44°51′23″N 122°36′31″W / 44.85639°N 122.60861°W / 44.85639; -122.60861Built1936ArchitectKeith R. Maguire, Jr.Architectural styleNational Park Service rusticNRHP reference No.02000673[1]Added to NRHPJune 20, 2002 Added to NRHPJune 30, 1983

Silver Falls City formed in 1888 and was primarily a logging community with a few homesteaders, and the area was extensively logged. The small lumber town of Silver Falls City sat atop the South Falls, and as the land was cleared, a local entrepreneur sold admission to the Falls area,[2] with attractions such as pushing cars over the falls and even hosting a stunt with a daredevil riding over in a canoe.

In 1902, June D Drake, a commercial photographer and owner of Drake Brothers Studio in Silverton, Oregon, began to campaign for park status, using his photographs of the falls to gain support. Drake Falls was later named for him.[3] In 1926, however, an inspector for the National Park Service rejected the area for park status because of a proliferation of unattractive stumps after years of logging.

In 1935 President Franklin D. Roosevelt announced that the Silver Falls area would be turned into a Recreational Demonstration Area. Private land that had been logged was purchased, and workers in the Civilian Conservation Corps were employed to develop park facilities, including the historic South Falls Lodge, completed in the late 1930s. It was used as a restaurant from 1946 until the late 1950s and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Silver Falls State Park Concession Building Area in 1983.[4] The Silver Creek Youth Camp—Silver Falls State Park was also added to the National Register at this time.

In January 2008, during the 2008 supplemental legislative session, Fred Girod of the Oregon House of Representatives sought federal designation of the area as a national park via a house joint memorial to the United States Congress, but the bill died in committee.[5]

Geology

The history of the canyon's formation begins about 26 million years ago to the Oligocene period, when most of Oregon was covered by ocean. After the waters of the ocean receded about 15 million years ago, the flood basalt flows of the Columbia River Basalt Group covered the sandstone that had been the ocean floor. The softer layers of sandstone beneath the basalt sheet eroded over time, creating pathways behind some of the waterfalls that Civilian Conservation Corps workers widened to make safe for public use. Another geologic feature are many tree "chimneys" or casts, formed when hot lava engulfed living trees and disintegrated them.[6]

^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. April 15, 2008. ^ "A brief history of Silver Falls State Park". Friends of Silver Falls. ^ Engeman, Richard H. (2009). The Oregon Companion: An Historical Gazetteer of The Useful, The Curious, and The Arcane. Portland, Oregon: Timber Press. p. 123. ISBN 978-0-88192-899-0. ^ "Oregon Hikes - Silver Falls". Retrieved September 1, 2007. ^ "House Joint Memorial 101". Oregon Legislative Assembly. 2008. Retrieved December 31, 2008. ^ "Silver Falls Trailmap" (PDF). Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. Retrieved September 1, 2007.
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Kelvin Kay -- Kkmd at English Wikipedia - CC BY-SA 3.0
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