The area of the Tillamook State Forest has been a valuable natural resource to the inhabitants of the area for many thousands of years. The wood and bark from the Western red cedars was used for a variety of purposes including shelters and basketmaking. The natives would travel the rivers and trade the resources of the forest with the tribes on the coast, within the valley, and at the Columbia River.
The area has been burned by multiple large fires throughout the decades including the infamous Tillamook Burn. These were a series of fires starting in 1933 that burnt vast portions of the forest. It was replanted from the 1940s until the 1970s.
Back in the 1800's there were multiple reported fires as well including one that possibly burned most of the Oregon Coast.
The area was likely a rich source of furs for the early trappers and Fort Vancouver. Once the abundance of fur bearing animals ceased to exist and the land sharing treaties expired, the focus was then moved to the wood industry. Railroads were brought in and lumber mills were installed to take advantage of the vast supplies of timber. Once the Chainsaw, trucks, and highways were available the railroads were no longer as profitable and often went unused. The timber is still an important part of the current economy as well as providing habitat for a large variety of creatures.
The Tillamook Forest is a temperate rainforest in the Pacific Coast Range dominated by mountains, valleys, and ravines.
Flora and fauna edit
Douglas Fir with interspersed Grand Fir, Western Red Cedar, Alder, Big Leaf Maple, and Hemlock.
The climate is much wetter than that of the inland valley due to the mountain ranges and orographic precipitation. The area is still susceptible to Summer heat waves
Get in edit
From south of Portland, take OR-217 North toward Beaverton. Highway 217 ends at Highway 26. Merge onto Highway 26 West and continue on that road for the next 16 miles. Highway 26 breaks off into a two way fork. Take the left fork onto OR-6 and continue down that road for the next 50 miles. The park is on your right. Turn into the park and you'll find a bridge. There are recreational areas on both sides of the bridge, the closest being to your immediate right. The campgrounds are over the bridge and up the road about 100 yards.
From the north - take I-5 south to 405-south (which is just north of downtown Portland). Take the exit to 26 West and follow the directions above.
Fees and permits edit
There are no fees charged for day use.
Get around edit
- Tillamook Forest Center, 45500 Wilson River Highway, ☏ . An education and information center in the park.
- Jones Creek resides in Tillamook Forest, 23 miles east of Tillamook. Highway 6 runs directly by the park. There is also a large day-use area right next to Wilson River. Jones Creek flows into the Wilson, and there are several paths to hike on that skirt the water's edge.
- Browns Camp (take highway 6 to the summit and then turn on Beaver Dam road near the gravel stockpile. Continue on University falls until the fork near the shooting range and take a left back onto Beaver Dam. Head right at the next fork onto Scoggins Valley Road. The Staging area will be to the left.). Browns camp is a popular ATV and off-road campground with a variety of trails and roads, with often precarious conditions, that provides various opportunities for fun and adventure. Precautions should be taken when using these trails and speeds should be decreased when necessary. Have fun, the trails and designated areas were built for your enjoyment.
- Diamond Mill, about 22 miles up the Wilson River(hwy. 6) (22 miles east of tillamook). dawn to dusk. There are many trails up here. Smith Homestead is before the bridge that takes you into the Diamond Mill day use and camping area there are very short trails at Smith Homestead but they are beautiful. Across the bridge at Diamond Mill there are trails that take you to the interpretative center which is a very cool place to visit the kids will love this place it a very short walk from Diamond Mill. There are trails that take you to the Wilson Falls which is 1.7 miles from the interpretative center it's a nice hike. You can also hike to Footbridge which is 3.2 miles from the interpretative center. These trails are a lot of fun they take you right along the edge of the beautiful Wilson river. free.
- Jones Creek campground. 29 large vehicle sites and 9 walk-in sites. There is a community parking area for anyone camping in the walk-in sites. The vehicle sites cost $10 per night and the walk-in sites cost $5 per night. An extra car costs an additional $3 per night, and firewood is available for $5 per bundle. There are no reservations, thus it is first come-first served. The campground is open from May 25th through October 2nd every year. The entire campground is self-sufficient, meaning no power or phones. There aren't any showers nearby either. There is a payphone and a county store several miles down the road.
Stay safe edit
Many people jump off Wilson River Footbridge and the nearby rock into the river below. The depth of the water varies greatly and it can be difficult to judge how deep it is. Therefore, you can never be sure that there isn't something under the surface of the river where you jump. Take extreme caution and jump at your own risk! Just in case, it is good to have someone with you.