September 2019 – University Falls – Tillamook State Forest

Hand and toe warmers, ACTIVATE! On the last weekend of September, we hiked out to University Falls in the Tillamook State Forest (on the way out to the Oregon Coast), and it was chilly and rainy.

But totally worth it! Video is up HERE!

This trail is a super short portion of the Nels Rodgers-University Falls Loop hike, which was the original hike-plan. However, the weather got the best of us, and instead of doing the full 8-mile loop, we parked at the University Falls trailhead and kept it quick!

Some notes about the area:

  • This forest area is SHARED space with ATVs, mountain bikes, horses, etc. You will not be alone out there and you’ll likely hear motorized vehicles.
  • Word on the street is that there is a shooting range nearby. If guns don’t thrill you, go when it’s raining. Or maybe, don’t choose this one.
  • There are a LOT of different trails (remember, you’re sharing space), so you’ll want to download a map, or follow the wood signs diligently. It can be a little confusing if you aren’t used to it.
  • The road to the University Falls trailhead is dirt and gravel. Have a capable vehicle and be ready to see lots of off-road Jeeps. Everyone was exceptionally kind when we went! I’d recommend yielding the right-of-way if you don’t like sharing small space.

From our nook of the Portland Metro Area, it was a 45-minute drive out to the turn-off for the Rogers Camp trailhead, and from there about 10 minutes to the University Falls trailhead. There appears to be plenty of parking all around, but I can imagine it gets a little full during the nice, summer weather. The terrain was fairly gentle, although a bit slippery in the rain (but honestly, not that bad).

It was an easy downhill hike, with a few turns here and there to get to the falls. We crossed a couple of ATV trails on the 0.3 mile trek, but didn’t encounter any traffic. On the way in, we saw only one person and on the way out only a handful.

And. Those. Falls. It could get tight back in there with too many people, but we were the only ones!

The soft pitter-patter of rain started picking up as we made our way back to the trailhead, and it was full on raining when we got back to the truck. Worth it.

Happy Hiking, friends!

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