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Dillon Falls

Photo Courtesy of Megan Egli

Central Oregon is awash in waterfalls, many of which were formed thousands of years ago by lava flows that coursed through our region and literally shaped our landscapes. One such site is Dillon Falls—a series of quick-drop rapids in the Deschutes River, all just a short drive from Bend and Sunriver.

From the parking area, a short, mostly flat trail leads a partially obscured overlook of the falls—a 15-foot drop that almost immediately turns into churning rapids in a quick, step ladder-like pattern. It all happens in a small gorge composed of lava rock, a setting that creates a striking contrast to the deep blue and green waters surging through. Even without the head-on views, Dillon Falls showcases the power of the thundering Deschutes River—especially between March and May, when snowmelt brings the channel to its roaring peak.

If you’d like to explore more, the Dillon Falls Day Use Area makes a great jumping-off point for exploring the broader Deschutes River Trail (which passes other waterfalls, such as Benham Falls and Lava Island Falls), getting on the water from an on-site boat launch, and enjoying a 0.3-mile accessible trail.”

Open Season


Dog Friendly and/or Leash Rules

Dogs are permitted but must be leashed May 15-Sept. 15; dogs must be leashed at the trailhead at all times.

Best time to visit


Don’t Miss

A visit in late winter or early spring rewards hikers with a quiet experience and the waterfall at its most thunderous.

Fees or Pass Needed

A Forest Pass ($5 per day pass or $30 per annual pass) or America the Beautiful pass ($80 per annual pass) is accepted.


E-bikes are not permitted.






There is parking at the Dillon Falls Day Use Area, which sits 0.3 mile west of the Dillon Falls Overlook along the Deschutes River Trail. Multiple parking areas are available beyond a Y-shaped intersection near the day-use area.


From Bend, the 10-mile drive southbound to the Dillon Falls Trailhead takes about 20 minutes via SW Century Drive, Dillon Falls Road, Conklin Road, and Forest Road 600; from Sunriver, the 13-mile drive northbound takes about 25 minutes via Spring River Road, Conklin Road, and Forest Road 600.

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