Moon Falls is the best of the three waterfalls accessed from Forest Service Road #1790, outside of Cottage Grove. We visited in September of 2015, an especially dry year, so our pictures show the waterfall in its most unimpressive state.
This is unfortunate because, when the creek is more than a trickle, Moon Falls appears to be quite impressive. The stream cascades down over 100 feet of moss-covered rocks and then continues flowing over a jumble of rocks and fallen logs in a picturesque manner.
The trail is very enjoyable, and a picnic table with a view of the waterfall makes it a great picnic destination. My son enjoyed climbing some of the rocks to the right of the waterfall, as well, although that area is probably part of the waterfall itself in the rainy season.
My rating: Highly Recommended (3 stars)
(Waterfall – 3 stars, Trail – 3 stars, Experience – 3 stars)
Distance from Beaverton: About three hours drive south
Nearest town: Culp Creek
Nearest city: Eugene
Length of round-trip hike: 1.1 mile
Best season to visit: Spring or early summer
Things to know:
- There is no swimming or camping allowed in this area.
- The trail can be fairly muddy.
- The roads occasionally close in winter due to snow and ice.
- The waterfalls on Forest Road #1790 may alternatively be accessed from Highway 58 near Oakridge, but the roads are not as well maintained as the roads from Cottage Grove.
Toilet / Amenities: Picnic table near the waterfall
How to get there:
- Exit Interstate 5 at Cottage Grove (Exit 174) and drive east on Row River Road for approximately 19.5 miles to the junction of Brice Creek Road and Layng Creek Road #17, and turn left onto Layng Creek Road.
- Continue on this road for 8.7 miles.
- Turn right onto Forest Road #1790. At this junction, you’ll see a rest area on the left and a sign with distances to Spirit, Moon, and Pinard Falls on the right.
- Drive 0.25 miles on Forest Road #1790. (You’ll pass the trailhead for Spirit Falls.)
- Turn left on Forest Road #1702. It is signed for Moon Falls.
- After 2.75 miles, turn right on Forest Road #1702-728, which is also signed for Moon Falls.
- The trailhead is about 1/4 mile down this road.