Bend in Oregon State is surrounded by the stunning Cascade Mountains and diverse landscapes, resulting in several beautiful waterfall hikes nearby. From the towering cascades of Tumalo Falls to the enchanting moss-covered rocks at Proxy Falls, each waterfall has its own unique charm. During our Oregon road trip, chasing waterfalls was one of the main priorities. That’s why I’m happy to provide you with this complete guide to the best waterfalls near Bend, so you can easily visit them when you escape into the heart of Oregon’s wilderness. Get ready for some of the best Central Oregon waterfalls!
10 MOST BEAUTIFUL WATERFALLS NEAR BEND
The Proxy Falls are a pair of cascades in the Willamette National Forest, on 78 miles from Bend. Via a short 1.6-mile unpaved loop trail through lava fields and dense conifer forests, you can reach the viewpoints of Lower Proxy Falls and the smaller Upper Proxy Falls. The Lower Proxy Falls are definitely the most beautiful one cascading 226 feet (69 m) down a mossy cliff. Because the road to Proxy Falls Trailhead closes from mid-November to mid-June, you can only visit this waterfall near Bend in the summer months.
Distance: 1.6 miles
Elevation gain: 147 feet
Location: Blue River, OR 97413, United States
Salt Creek Falls
Oregon’s second-highest waterfall at 286 feet (87m) is Diamond Creek Falls. This spectacular waterfall is a 80-minute drive south of Bend over 77 miles and can be perfectly combined on your way to Eugene. And the great thing is that you can visit this waterfall very easily as it’s only a few hundred meters walk from the parking lot to the overlook platform. But if you want to hike for a but then it is highly recommended to continue along the Diamond Creek. This trail passes above a deep gorge, visits a lake, and then encounters another beautiful waterfall called the Diamond Creek Falls.
Distance: 3.9 miles (6.4 km) for the Diamond Creek Falls Loop Trail
Elevation gain: 1,040 feet
Location: Crescent, OR 97733, United States
Located in Cline Falls State State Park just off the Mackenzie Highway is a beautiful viewpoint of the Cline Falls by the shores of the Deschutes River. This 20 ft-high (6.1 m) segmented steep cascade waterfall is one of the most beautiful waterfalls near Bend and is just a 25-minute drive over 18 miles north. You can perfectly combine a visit to the Cline Falls together with exploring Smith Rock State Park. The walk to Cline Falls viewpoint is only a 1.2-mile out-and-back trail, so it’s an easy and short visit to these stunning falls.
The Tumalo Falls are one of the closest waterfalls near Bend on a 35-minute drive. The 97-foot-high Tumalo Falls is easy to access directly from the parking area. But if you want to explore more of the stunning Deschutes National Forest, then you can go on a longer adventure to reach several other Oregon waterfalls, including the Double Falls.
Distance: 6.8 miles
Elevation gain: 1217 feet
Location: Deschutes National Forest, Oregon 97703, United States
Dillion Falls is one of the closest waterfalls near Bend on only a 20 minutes drive from downtown Bend. The Dillon Falls Day Use Area is the perfect place for a picnic and the easy access makes it a perfect stop when driving the Cascades Lakes Scenic Byway.
Located deep in Willamette National Forest, Marion Falls is one of the more off-the-beaten-path Oregon waterfalls. The trailhead is at Lake Marion from where you will follow the river downstream passing along several beautiful waterfalls. Marion Falls is one of the highlights along the 4.3-mile waterfall hike. But also make sure to continue just a little further downstream to Gatch Falls which is another beautiful two-tiered waterfall. It is a bit of a drive from Bend though. Marion Falls trailhead is 68 miles northwest of Bend passing Black Butte Ranch and Three Sisters Wilderness.
Distance: 4.3 miles
Elevation gain: 921 feet
Location: Marion Lake Trailhead, OR 97342, United States
The Benham Falls are easily accessible from the trailhead at Dillon Falls Day Use Area following the Deschutes River Trail, so you can perfectly combine these two waterfalls into one visit. Benham Falls are actually a collection of rapids stretching for about one-third of a mile making it a perfect place for whitewater rafting. Besides exploring the rapids, you can also continue hiking to the Lava Island Falls which are more spectacular than the Benham rapids in terms of height.
The Paulina Creek Falls are situated in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument Area. These stunning double falls can be reached via a moderate trail of 5.4 miles round trip with a 767-foot elevation gain. The falls stand out for its parallel descent of 80 feet surrounding a small island at the edge of the cliff. It’s one of the most fun waterfall hikes in Oregon and only a 40-minute drive from Bend. And besides exploring the Paulina Falls there are plenty of other activities to do in the area! Think about hiking Paulina Peak Trail for a bigger challenge or the Peter Skene Ogden Trail. Relaxing along Paulina Lake for a picnic is of course also one of the options!
The Steelhead Falls are one of the easiest waterfalls near Bend to get to. The 0.5 miles hike takes you to the 20-feet high waterfall which has a perfect natural pool for swimming. Near the waterfall’s base lie numerous cliffs ranging from 25 to 30 feet high that are ideal for cliff jumping. This hike is fantastic any time of the year, but for the best swimming conditions, aim for June through August in the warmer summer months.
Sahalie & Koosah Falls
The Sahalie & Koosah Falls are one of the must-visit waterfalls near Bend Oregon. These two stunning waterfalls can be easily seen from the viewing platform close to the parking area. But the best way to experience them is by following the simple 2.6-mile loop trail that guides you past both Koosah and Sahalie Falls. Along this short trail, you can admire the picturesque views of moss-covered trees and the McKenzie River.
More USA travel inspiration
I hope you enjoyed this complete guide about the best waterfalls near Bend. For more USA travel inspiration, head over to our other guides.