Cougar (Terwilliger) Hot Springs – Cascades

Cougar Hot Springs

Cougar Hot Springs

Cougar Hot Springs

Cougar Hot Springs

Cougar Hot Springs

There are some places in this world that once you have visited you would wish to keep it a secret. One travel destination that guarantees to give you this special kind of feeling is Cougar Hot Springs or Terwilliger Hot Springs.

This is because the trip will not only satisfy you physically but also take care of your emotional needs. Here is a comprehensive review of what you should expect when you visit Cougar Hot Springs.


Cougar Hot Springs is located in the elegant Willamette National Forest, 55 miles or 1 hour 10 minutes from Eugene. While you enjoy the scenic view of the reservoir, focus on your right and you are able to see a small kiosk.  There is a parking area on your left. Park your car and walk to the kiosk where you will pay a $6 fee per person.

After that, you will be free to walk through the fantastic forest for approximately 1/4 mile. The walk is easy and enjoyable as the path is clear and straightforward to follow.

Cougar Hot Springs Features

Cougar (Terwilliger) Hot Springs is a magical place of its own that is deeply hidden in the dense natural forest. This means that apart from just enjoying the benefits that come from the hot springs, you will also be able to experience the serenity of a lush and dense forest. You will have the rare moments to wash away all your stress and anxiety. These feelings will be replaced with a relaxed and an open mind that is able to receive anything provided by nature.

There are five-tiered pools whose sizes range between 3-12 feet across and their depth ranges between 2-3 feet deep. The pools are lined with lithified rocks, though sometimes small gravel is used.

Cougar (Terwilliger) Hot Springs Soaking Etiquette

At these springs, clothing is optional and this will give you chance to fully enjoy the nature. You will be comfortable not wearing a swimming suit as nudity is not an issue.

For some reason, glass containers are not allowed here. Alcohol and beverages are also prohibited. Another etiquette that you are encouraged to adhere to while at the springs is to not smoke; this is solely done to make the non-smokers more comfortable.

If you bring your dog with you, leave it in a special area for dogs.

Extra Information

Ideal times: You can visit the hot springs anytime of the year so long as it is during the daytime.

Cougar (Terwilliger) Hot Springs are clean and well maintained so as to fully cater for your needs without causing you any discomfort. There is ample parking space and there are pit toilets which ensure that everyone is comfortable.


  • Every Thursday from 8 am till 12 pm pools are closed for cleaning and maintenance
  • It is crowded on weekends and holidays


General Description

Access: 365 days a year from sunrise to sunset
Development: Semi-developed
Clothing: Optional
Service: No services are available; compost toilets
Accommodations: The closest campground - 7.5 miles north; hotels in Blue River - 12.2 miles northwest
Walking distance from the parking: 0.25 miles
Day-use fees: $6 per a person
Elevation: 1700 ft (518 m)
GPS coordinates: 44.08389, -122.23194

Cougar Hot Springs are located:

  • 55 miles east of Eugene
  • 117 miles southeast of Salem
  • 162 miles southeast of Portland.

Address: Terwilliger Hot Springs Trailhead, Cougar Dam Road, Lane County

Water Properties and Geochemistry

Mineral water of Cougar Hot Springs belongs to Sodium Chloride Type.

Water temperature: 95°F (35°C) to 110°F (43°C)
Water acidity level: Neutral (pH=7.76)
Type of the springs: Sodium Chloride
Chemical used: None

Average dissolved solids: 1800 Mg/L

Mineral Content

Chloride - 788 Mg/L
Sodium - 392 Mg/L
Sulfate - 260 Mg/L
Calcium - 225 Mg/L
Silica - 50 Mg/L
Carbonate - 21 Mg/L
Potassium - 6.3 Mg/L
Boron - 5.1 Mg/L
Fluorine - 0.8 Mg/L
Lithium - 0.52 Mg/L
Magnesium - 0.1 Mg/L

Directions to Cougar Hot Springs

From I-5 take exit 194A in Eugene. Drive on Highway 126 E for about 47 miles to Cougar Dam Rd. Turn right onto Cougar Dam Road and continue to Aufderheide Dr., turn right and then stay on the Aufderheide Dr., in 7 miles Terwilliger Hot Springs Trailhead will be on the right.


Lauren S. Forcella. "Geochemistry of Thermal and Mineral Waters in the Cascade Mountains of Western North America". 1981

Weather Forecast

Winter Weather Advisory

8:24 PM PDT on March 23, 2018
1:00 AM PDT on March 24, 2018
Chance of Snow
03/23 30%
Chance of Snow
High 43° / Low 28°
Chance of Rain
03/24 50%
Chance of Rain
High 45° / Low 27°
03/25 40%
High 46° / Low 31°
03/26 50%
High 47° / Low 33°
Chance of Rain
03/27 40%
Chance of Rain
High 50° / Low 37°

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