Fortunately, one of the more prominent tourist attractions was very close by, Salt Creek Falls, just a half hour down the road on Route 58. Billed as the "second tallest" falls in Oregon, Salt Creek flows through a wonderfully maintained piece of forest, with hiking trails, picnic areas, and of course, a prominent stone overlook that provides a fantastic view of the falls.
|This photo does not do the falls justice...|
Even when not marveling at the falls themselves, the view of the canyon was absolutely stunning...
Now having the fishing gear in the trunk of the car, it would have been downright negligent of me to not give the stretch of water above the falls a quick peek for fish. The fly fishing guide book had mentioned that there wouldn't be any "trophies" above the falls, but there should be plenty of small wild rainbows, and the occasional brook trout.
So a short walk upstream down this beautifully groomed path...
...and tons of aggressive little fish. Just as advertised!
Even found a few of those "invasive" brookies!
So much fun!
After about an hour and a half of fish after fish after fish, I really needed to collapse the rod, pack up and head over to the Bug Out before it got too late. While nobody ever likes to leave an active fishing spot, it was easy to walk away both satisfied with this side trip and extremely optimistic for what the rest of the weekend had in store.
If you're ever in Central Oregon, I highly recommend a visit to Salt Creek Falls. Sightseeing, fishing, and the simple beauty of Mother Nature. It's tough to beat; a memorable trip for certain.
For more on Salt Creek Falls and the Willamette National Forest, check out the US Forest Service's website HERE.