McKenzie River National Recreation Trail

Paralleling the McKenzie River, this trail passes through old-growth Douglas firs and features stunning waterfalls. It is 26.5 miles one-way, has moderate elevation changes, and is among Oregon's most beautiful trails.


The McKenzie River National Recreation Trail is located about an hour's drive from either Eugene or Bend, Oregon.  The trail begins at the Upper McKenzie River trailhead, one mile east of McKenzie Bridge, and ends at the Lower McKenzie River Trailhead. With 11 trailheads along the river that can be accessed from Highway 126, it's easy to plan shorter outings, or you can challenge yourself to complete the full trail since there are local shuttle services providing transportation.

trail access points

On THE TRail

The McKenzie River National Recreation Trail (No. 3507) is a single-track trail paralleling the scenic McKenzie River, popular with hikers, trail runners, and mountain bikers. Highlights include Clear Lake, Tamolitch Falls (Blue Pool), and Sahalie and Koosah Falls. The best seasons to visit are spring and fall, though portions of the trail remain open in winter (snow travel required). The lower part of the trail has flatter, kid-friendly hiking. There are several campgrounds with day-use areas located along the trail (McKenzie Bridge, Ice Cap, Cold Water Cove, and Paradise) which have potable water; all other water should be treated. 


  • Suitable Activities: Day Hiking, Snowshoeing, Trail Running
  • Snowshoeing Category: Intermediate
  • Seasons: Year-round
  • Weather: View weather forecast
  • Difficulty: Moderate/Strenuous
  • Length: 26.5 mi
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