Oregon's forests are full of hidden treasures. You just have to know where to find them. Did you know that there are six natural pools hidden underneath a pouring waterfall and you can have them all to yourselves? Cougar Hot Springs has it all.

What's it like?

Picture a lush setting of emerald pools framed by towering Douglas fir trees. 

As you take the easy quarter-mile trail to the water, you'll be enveloped by the deep hues of ancient woods. Light pours through the forest canopy, letting in a little warmth to the cool trail.

To get in, you'll need to pay a $7 cash entrance fee per person. Talk about cheap thrills. 

It's a small price to pay for what you get.

Here, you'll find not one but six soaking pools separated by rock walls. Each clothing-optional pool is laid out in stone steps carved out of the ravine.

Step on in — the water's warm.

Temperatures range from 85 F in the lower pool to 112 F in the upper pool, so you'll be sure to stay nice and toasty.

There's also plenty of space for you to relax. Why not treat your S/O to a romantic trip away or make it a group outing and invite your best friends?

The geothermal pools range from 3-12 feet across. So, whether you're looking for some alone R&R time in a private pool or one big enough for a group hangout, there's something for everyone here.

When you visit the hot springs, it's important to note that there's no alcohol allowed on the park grounds, as the hot springs are for day use only. 

Make sure to pick up after yourself and leave no trace. Let's keep this place as beautiful as we found it. Happy travels!

Terwilliger (Cougar) Hot Springs

Price: $7 cash per person

Hours: Sunup to sundown

Location: Willamette National Forest, OR

Why You Should Go: You can explore six jewel-colored pools and a waterfall on this easy Oregon trail.


We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.