Are you looking for a hike that is close to Sunriver? Perhaps you need a trail that is kid-friendly. Then this is the hike you are looking for. The Fall River Trail is great for those of all skill levels.
I recently walked this trail with my 4 year old and 4 month old sons. My 4 year old strapped on his helmet, hopped onto his Strider bike and cruised on down the trail, no problem. We fell behind a bit, as I unfolded the stroller and secured the car seat in, but easily caught up once moving. The well-maintained trail is quite easy with a stroller. Take note that as you begin descending, the trail feels a bit narrow and slightly slanted (while pushing a stroller). Don’t let that scare you away, however, the rest is very doable.
To get here, drive out of Sunriver and, at the traffic circle, take the 1st exit onto S. Century Drive. Turn left onto S. Century Drive after .6 miles. After 3.1 miles, turn right to stay on S. Century Drive. Drive up this road for 7.8 miles and you will see a parking area on the left. Park here and you will see the trail to the right of the parking area. It’s quite easy to find and so worth it!
Once you park, you’ll notice a winding and strikingly clear river below. This is the Fall River. It’s breathtaking in its beauty and temperature. This is not the water you’ll want to jump into on a hot summer day, but it is sure lovely to look at.
As you weave along the trail, you’ll be able to enjoy the sights and smells of the red bark on the toweringPonderosas all around you, hear the birds chirping and the squirrels rattling the leaves as they race each other through the forest. If you are lucky, you may even spot a deer along the trail. The trail does parallel the highway in some spots, but it is far enough away that the occasional car does not intrude on your nature experience.
Remember your snacks or pack a picnic. There are some off-shoots of the trail that lead to the river banks with some flat dry areas for sitting and enjoying the sound of the water streaming by. If your young ones want an additional challenge, give them a list of treasures to find.
Our list went as follows:
- A full pinecone
- An eaten pinecone
- A stick with a purpose (a walking stick, or one that resembles a wand or a sword… pretty easy, eh?)
- A stick with moss attached
- A smooth rock
- A lava rock
- Trash x 3
note: Here’s some good news. We couldn’t find a single piece of trash. We brought the amount to find down to 1 to make it easier. Still nothing. We ended up tossing a wrapper from our snacks next to us so that our son felt like he completed the list. (Don’t tell him!)
- BONUS: A deer (we were not fortunate enough to spot one on this outing)
Overall, this was such a nice hike. It even rained on us a bit, but we didn’t mind. We felt sheltered by the forest and revitalized by our hike and time together.
If you are planning a trip to Central Oregon soon, be sure to check out our list of vacation rentals. From any of these, you’ll be close to this trail and SO much more!