One of the most delightful things about the Oregon outdoors is that just when you think you’ve ticked all of the best hikes and landmarks off your list, someone will point out another gem.
“You mean you’ve never hear of this place?” they’ll ask. And just like that you’ll have a whole new location to adventure off to.
This is what I felt like when I learned about Toketee Falls in Southern Oregon, which is apparently one of the most photographed waterfalls in the state.
The falls are named after the Chinook word meaning “graceful,” and it’s easy to see why. It’s a slice of rushing whitewater pouring 113 feet down across carved basalt. The water is sourced from the North Umpqua River and flows down through a maintained stream that guarantees an even water flow year-round.
The hike up to Toketee Falls is a smooth and shady 0.7 mile climb up a graded dirt and gravel trail. You’ll walk under a canopy of hemlocks, Western red cedar, Pacific yew and big leaf maple on the way up. It’s an easy hike, but it’s not wheelchair-accessible due to the several sets of stairs. Handrails are in place in the steepest areas, but travelers with dogs or children are advised to be cautious.
The falls plunge in two distinct drops – one from an upper tier falling 28 feet, and the second a 85-foot plunge into the basin below. The hike leads to a viewing deck up top, from where one can watch the water cascade down. It is also possible to climb off-trail to the base of the falls to view the rushing water from the base. The climb down is short, but it's very steep and does require scrambling.
Directions from Roseburg:
-- Take OR-138 east then turn north after 58.6 miles on Toketee-Rigdon Road (Forest Road 34).
-- Cross the first bridge and turn left at the next turnoff to find the trailhead parking lot.
Parking and access to the falls is free.