Hike to the Watson Falls

Oregon Watson Falls

Added by Eric Johnson

  • 3rd largest water fall in Oregon
  • Easily accessible 0.6 mile roundtrip hike
  • Moss covered paths to massive basalt amphitheater

Watson Falls hurtles over a cathedral amphitheater wall of basalt, crashing into a long talus slope covered in moss and vine maple. At 272 feet, Watson Falls is the 3rd tallest waterfall in Oregon.

We actually stumbled upon Watson Falls driving back from Toketee Falls. The parking area is about 500 feet south of Highway 138 on the right side. The trail crosses Road 37 and climbs 0.33 miles up to the base of the falls. After that the trail continues up the mossy hill on the right leading to a look out point with a wooden bench to rest at before the trek back down.

Pack List

  • Hiking shoes
  • Hiking clothes
  • Rain jacket
  • Camera
  • Water
  • Snacks
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More



Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Summer, Autumn

Trail Type:



0.6 Miles



Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

about 1 month ago

Worth The Stop!!!!

We went camping for a few days in this area and checked out The other waterfalls nearby. This is a short hike and very different falls than the other one nearby. Oregon is a beautiful place!

about 1 month ago

3 months ago

Best Waterfall In Oregon

Watson Falls may not be the tallest, but in my opinion it was the most spectacular. The hike is easy and it wasn't crowded at noon on a Saturday. You can also hike right to the falls with zero red tape. I haven't seen all of Oregon's waterfalls, but Watson Falls is better than the others that get all the hype.

3 months ago

4 months ago

Great Road Trip Stop!

I visited Watson falls in early spring and the falls were in prime conditions! They are easy to find and located close to the road. After a short hike you are treated with a surprisingly awe inspiring waterfall that will not disappoint in its unique setting. Watson falls makes a great quick stop to stretch your legs and grab some stunning photos as you travel north or south on a road trip.

4 months ago

5 months ago

Tall Falls

This is definitely a tall falls but you'll still have to hike up to it to see most of it. The hike is short and nice, not as crowded as other nearby spots. It's not the most interesting photographically speaking but still worth grabbing a shot if you're nearby.

5 months ago

about 1 year ago

Came here mid August after coming from Crater Lake while heading over to Silver Falls SP. Besides a few people leaving as we showed up, and a few people walking up as we left, this place was empty. That was just one of the many advantages of this place. It was quiet and peaceful so that you could spend time getting extremely close to the falls without feeling in the way of someone taking a photo of listening to anyone chattering away. This fall was on par with (if not even better than) the waterfalls along the Columbia Gorge, but luckily it had less traffic, parking struggles, human noise, and overall clutter. The trail up and down is beautiful and follows the water that crashes down from the falls to become a creek. The falls are pretty cold as you get up to them so you might want to bring a sweater or waterproof jacket!

about 1 year ago

Added by Eric Johnson

More Adventures Nearby

Hike the Tumalo Creek Loop

Oregon / Tumalo Falls

This Loop begins at the Tumalo Falls View Point; however, the trail continues for another 3 miles.

Sara Welge
5 Saves

Hike Mt. Bachelor Sunrise to Summit

Oregon / Sunrise Lodge Trailhead

The Sunrise to Summit Trail on Mt. Bachelor is the easiest and most straightforward way for peakbaggers to reach the summit of one of Central Oregon’s classic volcano climbs.

Rachel Davidson
13 Saves

Hike the Olallie Lake North Basin Loop

Oregon / Lower Lake Trailhead

Begin at the Lower Lake Campground and take the Lower Lake trailhead. The best direction to hike is counter clockwise, however you can do either.

Isaac Desautels
3 Saves