Clue: It is still growing in the same place as you see in this postcard. The “Supervisor’s Cottage” or “Log Cabin” is no more, but you can still relax in a sunny meadow that was once our park manager’s “front lawn” in the South Falls Day-Use Area today.
Check out this Oregon State Parks Guide from the 1930s.
Our Friends of Silver Falls Park Interpreter, Matt Palmquist, estimates this vintage gem was produced between 1939 and 1943 due the newest park listed, Azalea State Park, being added into our state park system in 1939. Champoeg State Park was originally under the “State Board of Control” until 1943 when it officially became a part of the Oregon State Park “family.”
Each year rangers identify hazard trees that need to be removed in order to keep our park safer and healthier. This year we took the old-fashioned approach with the help of two teams of draft horses from Mill Creek Carriages of Aumsville, OR. Even though the horses are moving logs weighing over a ton, they can maneuver around other vegetation better than an excavator. Some trees were left for habitat while the ones pulled out by the horses will be milled to repair and build structures in not only Silver Falls State Park but other Oregon State Parks as well.
And it’s always nice to see our heritage brought back to life here at Silver Falls!
Hint: The creek is still here and still brings the water for our famous waterfalls but our state park’s name has a story to it!
Read the Statesman Journal’s article here:
Nestled in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, just a short scenic drive from the Willamette Valley, is 9,000 acres of temperate rainforest waiting for you – to explore, play, or simply stop and recharge. Silver Falls State Park, Oregon’s largest State Park, is centrally located in Oregon just east of the State Capital, Salem, and an easy day’s drive from Portland, Eugene, or Bend.
Silver Falls’ namesake comes from the 10 unforgettable waterfalls crashing into the canyon carved by the North and South Forks of Silver Creek – five of these waterfalls are over 100 feet and four you can walk behind! Hike through the mist on the Trail of Ten Falls, a National Recreation Trail, or explore miles of trails beyond the falls through quiet, old-growth forest on foot, bike, or horseback. The Silver Falls Historic District, a must for history-lovers, is filled with rustic-style buildings built by the young men of the 1930s Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) camps which serve today as our South Falls Lodge, Nature Store, and Combination Picnic Shelter, all of which are listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Many other visitors enjoy the cool waters of the day use area’s swimming area, lounge in the sun while kids play in one of the three playgrounds, or satisfy their curiosity about natural history through the many interpretative programs and special events offered throughout the year.
Silver Falls State Park is overflowing with lodging and refreshments options to satisfy any visitor – from the full-service Silver Falls Lodge & Conference Center complete with cabins, meals, a swimming pool, and meeting facilities to the campgrounds with 100 tent/RV sites, cabins, and group camping facilities. Popular for family reunions and weddings, the two “ranches” offer another unique lodging option all under one roof – complete with bunks, full kitchens, and a center fire-pit you won’t soon forget on a chilly evening with your friends. The YMCA camp is reservable outside of the summer season and also has many CCC-era historical buildings along with a swimming pool and full commercial kitchen. Snacks and refreshments are conveniently located in the Silver Creek Grill next to the swimming area’s D Shelter and in the Café in the South Falls Lodge, while meals and seasonal buffets are found in the Silver Falls Lodge & Conference Center.
The rangers at Silver Falls State Park have but one word of advice – it is very difficult to take in all that Silver Falls has to offer in one day so plan to stay awhile or come back and visit!