Blue Pool at Tamolitch Falls (Summer 2013)

The trailhead for Blue Pool is a few miles South of Sahalie Falls on the McKenzie Highway by the Smith Reservoir.  Make sure you follow the signs for Blue Pool.  There is plenty of space to park, both in parking areas, and along the road.

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Take a right at the junction of the road and the McKenzie River Trail.  Not far after you start, the trail goes downhill to meet up with the river.  This section of the trail takes you along the river through a very shaded, marshy forest.  Towards the end of this area is a curved wooden bridge.

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Coming out of the forest, you enter a lava flow area that’s more exposed and much drier.  The trail gets a lot more rocky and you start to climb.  You wind through the lava flow for about a mile and a half and you’ll come to a viewpoint where you can see down into the Blue Pool, meaning you can see all the rocks and trees that have sunk to the bottom.  Without a doubt, it’s the bluest water we’ve seen in Oregon.  If you wanted to go down to the water’s edge, it’d be about another quarter mile of sketchy rock scrambling and climbing down a steep hill.  We chose to stay at the viewpoint, where we overheard people talking about a teenager who died here when he jumped off the rocks into the water.  Tamolitch Falls was blocked by the lava flow, and water now runs under the rocks and fills the pool.


Distance: 4 miles (easy)

Elevation: 360 feet (easy)

Pet Friendly: Yes

Good For: All ages until you get to the trail that takes you down to the pool. Then it’s not best for kids or older folks.

Bathrooms: No

Parking Fee: None

Seasons: Late spring through fall

Popular: Yes

Warnings: Many people have seriously injured themselves jumping into the pool.

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