It just goes to show, you don't have to travel somewhere tropical to find turquoise water and sunny shores. The Pacific Northwest is teeming with natural wonders; you've just got to be willing to find them. Did you know that there are swimming holes in Oregon with clear emerald water?

Whether you're born and raised in the PNW or seeking some drool-worthy summer inspiration, there's nothing quite like evergreen trees and hidden creeks to stir your wanderlust.

Opal Creek Trail is an easy hike that leads adventure seekers through a beautiful network of old-growth cedar trees.

You'll start your journey at the Opal Creek Trailhead along North Fork Road on the OR-22.

Some of the trees are over 1,000 years old!

While the trail is relatively flat the whole way, it is a long hike, lasting nearly seven miles round trip.

If you'd like to bring your furry friend, dogs are welcome as long as they are kept on a leash.

All throughout your walk, you'll see spectacular river and waterfall views and come across prime sunbathing spots. 

The only sounds you'll hear are birds chirping and the water flowing in the distance.

While the pools are an oasis year-round, it's best to visit during the summer season when the water warms up. 

The stones in the riverbed are multicolored and the water is crystal clear with a beautiful green tint. It almost looks like Gatorade!

All around the creek, there are tall rocky ledges perfect for cliff jumping or posting up for a picnic under the warm summer sun.

Just make sure to check the water levels before you take the cold plunge in.

All in all, it's the perfect place to lounge, work on your summer tan or snap some adorable photos with your S/O. If you're looking for your next off-the-grid adventure, this is it.

Opal Creek Trailhead

Price: $5 per vehicle each day

Location: Opal Creek Trail, Lyons, OR

Why You Should Go: You can explore an emerald green creek surrounded by 1,000-year-old trees.


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.

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