McLoughlin Promenade

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One of the biggest waterfalls in the Northwest is hidden from view… but if you take this trail you can get a glimpse.

My Oregon City love-fest continues…  If you stop for a ride in the Elevator, you need to save time for  a stroll on the McLoughlin Promenade for one really good reason: a view of Willamette Falls.  It’s one of the largest waterfalls in the Pacific Northwest (by volume) and there’s are only a couple ways to see it.  

  1. At a viewpoint on the side of 99E. 
  2. From a boat in the water.
  3. McLoughlin Promenade on the bluff above the river.

Mcloughlin promenade view

McLaughlin promenade willamette falls

When you exit the elevator take a right, heading southwest along the paved trail.  It winds you through a lovely park that parallels the river.   During my lunchtime stroll a couple weeks back there were lots of people walking, running and picnicking.  The path is paved and partially shaded so it’s really a pleasant walk.

McLoughlin promenade trail

Mcloughlin promenade mills

Along the way you’ll see that the view is nearly ruined by the old run-down mills on both sides of the river.  The horseshoe falls could be so spectacular and a real highlight for tourists if we had better access.  Luckily there is an effort to renovate that area and the plans for a riverwalk development were just approved by Governor Kate Brown!  Check out photos here.  

Promenade sign

Even from the top of the bluff, the waterfall is spectacular.  It’s like a mini Niagra Falls.  Hopefully we’ll be able to see the falls from a lower vantage point in the future, but until then we’ll have to settle for the McLoughlin Promenade.  




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