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Historic Hiking Trail Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.0 (1) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A long looped trail with moderate elevation change takes you through mossy old growth and includes University Falls.


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Map Key

8.0

Miles

12.8

KM

Loop

1,922' 586 m

High

1,341' 409 m

Low

1,071' 326 m

Up

1,075' 328 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

28%

Max Grade (15°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Historical Significance · River/Creek · Waterfall · Wildflowers

Overview

This loop uses several different trails to take a tour of the Coastal Range crest ecosystems, from old growth mossy spruces, to recently cut wildflower meadows, to Douglas fir plantations. The trail includes the beautiful University Falls and crosses ATV or Motorbike trails and state forest roads several times. The elevation change is gradual enough to make the trail feel relatively easy for most of its length and it's a great way to spend an afternoon (4-5 hours) in the forest.

Need to Know

Rogers Camp Trailhead is a busy OHV area with a vault toilet.

Description

To follow a loop on the Historic Hiking Loop begin at Rogers Camp Trailhead. The Nels Rogers Trail begins here and heads uphill into the forest. This 1.6 mile trail passes through forest planted in 1949. After crossing Beaver Dam Road near the 1.3 mile mark, the trail reaches a steep switchback on the banks of the Devil's Lake Fork of the Wilson River. Continue down to Deyoe Creek Trailhead along a steep, rocky trail.

Cross the bridge on the state forest road and the Deyoe Creek Trailhead will be on the left. Visitors will travel through a dense, mossy forest and meet Beaver Dam Road, which marks the end of Nels Rogers Trail and the beginning of the Wilson River Wagon Road Trail.

The Wilson River Wagon Road Trail follows a portion of the historic wagon route along the South Fork of the Wilson River. This trail crosses several motorized trails while climbing above Browns Camp. Wild strawberries skirt the trail in open areas, and other sections follow a path established by migrating elk herds. One mile from Beaver Dam Road, the trail descends and meets Old Saddle Mountain Road, where remains of an historic railroad trestle are present. Turn right onto the road and follow the signs 100 feet where the Wilson River Wagon Road Trail continues to the left, across the road.

The trail levels out and crosses two additional gravel roads before it parallels a bubbling stream. Another 1.4 miles brings the Wilson River Wagon Road Trail to University Falls Road and Gravelle Brothers Trail. University Falls Trailhead marks the beginning of the Gravelle Brothers Trail. This trail is named for the Gravelle twins, Elroy and Edmund, who spent countless hours helping to develop and maintain the Tillamook State Forest trail system.

To continue on the loop back to Rogers Camp Trailhead cross the road and take the Gravelle Brothers Trail north. The trail begins with a short climb on rocky soil. As the trail levels off, it crosses two motorized trails, so be cautious. In 0.4 mile the trail drops down to a junction.

To reach the falls, look for the painted sign marking the way and continue 500 feet to the falls. University Falls is a great spot to cool off during the summer or to enjoy a peaceful lunch. The level of water flowing over the falls varies greatly throughout the year, from a rushing cascade that covers the entire rock face to little more than a trickle after a dry summer.

To finish the Historic Hiking Loop, return to the trail junction and continue on the Gravelle Brothers Trail which is marked by a sign. Scorched stumps line the trail telling the story of the Tillamook Burn. Stay right and follow the old road grade to Rogers Camp. A right turn here leads quickly up to a gravel road. Follow the road to the top of the hill to the ODOT maintenance shed and proceed behind the cement barriers on this shared-use segment of the Elliott Creek OHV Trail.

Follow Beaver Dam Road 0.2 mile to Rogers Camp Trailhead.

Flora & Fauna

Sitka spruce, Western Red Cedar, Red Alder, Swordfern, Vine Maple

History & Background

This trail follows a portion of the historic wagon route along the South Fork of the Wilson River. Opened in 1893 as a toll road, this was the only route between Forest Grove and Tillamook. It was traveled by stagecoach and ox carts

Contacts

Land Manager: Tillamook State Forest

Shared By:

Samantha Goodwin

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 1 vote

#3693

Overall
  4.0 from 1 vote
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Recommended Route Rankings

#115

in Oregon

#3,693

Overall
67 Views Last Month
211 Since Aug 20, 2020
Intermediate/Difficult

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Photos

A log bridge crosses a clear stream under a canopy of red alders.
Aug 20, 2020 near Banks, OR
University Falls tumbles over a stepped rock face onto a pile of huge logs, surrounded by moss and red alder.
Aug 20, 2020 near Banks, OR
Dirt trail passes though old sitka spruce trees and by a large rotting stump, surrounded by sword ferns.
Aug 20, 2020 near Banks, OR
Nice view after the brutal introductory climb.
Sep 28, 2017 near Banks, OR
Ferns!
Sep 28, 2017 near Banks, OR

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