Bridal Veil Falls, Columbia River Gorge
Bridal Veil is a former logging town, now Ghost Town in the Columbia River Gorge. The town got it’s name from a local landmark, Bridal Veil Falls. A state park, Bridal Veil Falls State Scenic Viewpoint is located at what would have been the western end of the town of Bridal Veil. The remains of the log flume as mentioned in the ghost town article, are visible from the family and kid friendly 3/4 mile hike to the falls. As are the remains of some concrete footings that line the stream.
Part of the park goes right out to the bluff, where the Columbia River and Highway I84 are visible. This same viewpoint has been around since the original Historic Columbia River Highway was built. Within the State Park is the falls themselves.
There are actually three sets of falls on this road, but only one is visible from here. The other two are only visible by walking up the Palmer Mill Road.
The river through here is very pretty, allow signs of the former logging operation abound if you know what to look for. Especially in the number and age of trees that line the river.
While not as big as some of the other falls in the area, Bridal Veil does have a few benefits in the way of restrooms, ample parking, and a paved trail much of the way to the falls. Along with the nearby Bridal Veil Lodge, makes this a great park to spend the day (and night) in.
In a somewhat ironic twist of fate, Silver Falls State Park is possibly one of Oregon’s most under appreciated tourist destinations. In many ways the beauty of the area eclipses that of Multnomah Falls along the Columbia River Gorge, yet it sees much fewer visitors.
Located just under sixty miles from Portland and twenty-six east of Salem, Silver Falls State Park is a day use fee area and campground area capable of handling full RVs. The real attraction though is the park’s 24 miles of walking trails (portions of which are multi-use for horses and bikes,) and the 8.7 mile Trail of Ten Falls. Four of the ten falls can be walked behind, providing some spectacular pictures.
A small city, named Silver Falls City formed in about 1888 at the top of the falls. The town never grew big enough to get it’s own post office, and as the timber around the area was logged, the town’s population fell in numbers. But despite the rather barren country side, the owner of the land around South Falls, D.E. Geiser charged a dime admission to see the falls, and coordinated many stunts over the falls. These included pushing cars over the falls, and once the daredevil
Al Faussett went over in a covered canoe.
In 1900, a local photographer named June D. Drake from nearby Silverton, started campaigning for the area to gain park status. In 1926 the National Parks Service declined due to the badly logged area but the State of Oregon, under Samuel H. Boardman’s direction, started purchasing land in the area. In 1935 Franklin D. Roosevelt turned the Silver Falls Area into Recreational Demonstration Area and approved the purchase of land to do so. The Civilian Conservation Corps began rehabilitating the area and built the (now) Historic South Falls Lodge. The 6000 acres of land in the area that the Federal Government had purchased were donated to the State of Oregon by 1949, which doubled the size of the park.
Kerby is a Class E6 ghost town.
This former gold mining town is on US 199, five miles south of Selma, and just north of Cave Junction. Kerby was established around 1850 after a mule carrying a pool table collapsed and died here. Not being able to get paid for the failed delivery of the pool table to Althouse,“Tig” Martinez, erected a tent over the pool table and advertised a new saloon. Was a major mining camp through the 1850s with some 500 people. Several old houses, including one restored and turned into a museum.
Unfortunately the museum has been closed every time I’ve ever been in the area.
Kerby Old Building
Kerby was also the site of Fort Hay.