The scenic 97-foot Tumalo Falls abruptly plummets down a sheer cliff entering into a narrow canyon surrounded by steep ridges. The 20-miles long Tumalo Creek is a tributary of the Deschutes River. This creek waters farmland and provides Bend with drinking water.
Located just about 13 miles west of the Bend downtown, Tumalo Falls Day Use Area is one of the most popular sites near Bend. On weekend days, it can be a challenge to find a parking spot. The waterfall is visible from the road and parking area. A short walk leads to the lower overlook platform that provides the best view of the waterfall. You can climb a quarter-mile on North Fork Trail to the upper viewpoint and the waterfall top.
There are a few hiking and mountain biking trails. North Fork Trail leads to the viewpoint 0.25 miles away. If you hike upstream along the creek you will find smaller waterfalls including Double Falls after 0.8 miles and then Middle Tumalo Falls after 0.9 miles. Mountain bikes on North Fork Trail are allowed uphill only. It's possible to make a loop and see more waterfalls. Since a part of loop trails runs through the protected watershed, dogs and bikes are prohibited.
During winter the gate is closed. You can snowshoe or ski to the falls.
Tumalo Falls | General Description
Managed: US Forest Service
Location: Deschutes National Forest
Services: Vault Toilet
Activities: Hiking, biking, picnicking, photography
Accommodations: No camping at Tumalo Falls
Distance from the parking: Short
Road access: Any passenger vehicle
Day-use fees: Yes or Recreation Passes
Elevation: 5,014 ft (1,528 m)
Tumalo Falls is located:
- 13 miles west of Bend
- 145 miles east of Salem
- 187 miles southeast of Portland.
From the Bend downtown,
- Travel west for about 10 miles on Franklin Avenue, Riverside Boulevard, Galveston Avenue, and Skyliners Road to Tumalo Falls Road
- Bear left and continue for 2.6 miles to the destination.