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Oberlin Falls, Flathead County

Oberlin Falls is a roadside waterfall located along Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park. The waterfall is 200 feet tall, accessible by nearby road access, and is one of the easiest waterfalls to appreciate within the National Park’s boundaries.

Oberlin Falls flows from Logan Creek, visible from the outlook along the road, with some easy parking spots there for better viewing.

A Guide to the Oberlin Falls, Flathead County

The incredible, 200-foot waterfall in Glacier National Park is one of the confirmed falls, making it one of the tallest falls you’ll find in the park.

oberlin falls stat

Oberlin Falls Stats

  • Location: Going to the Sun Road, Glacier National Park, Flathead County, Montana
  • Latitude: 48.69971
  • Longitude: -113.72373
  • Stream: Logan Creek
  • Elevation: 6442 feet
  • Height: 200 feet
  • Season: Spring to autumn
  • Campgrounds and RV parks nearby: 20+ campgrounds located within the park or nearby, with hundreds of sites available

Recreational Activities Near Oberlin Falls

Flathead County is home to many natural attractions and wonders which draw in travelers from around the world as they explore the incredible beauty of northwest Montana.

Whether you’re a local or a visitor here for the first time, you’ll find there’s a plethora of exciting adventures to be had throughout the National Forest and nearby National Parks.

Swimming

One of the first questions many folks ask is “Can you swim in Oberlin Falls?” Sadly, the answer is no. It is extremely unwise to swim in live, natural waterfalls. The rushing waters create a dangerous uncurrent that may pull you down, under the water and trap you there.

Because of this, it’s best to choose somewhere else to swim, like one of the many gorgeous lakes or rivers in Glacier National Park. Some of the most popular swimming holes include St. Mark Lake, Bowman Lake, Lake McDonald, and Lake Josephine.

Just beware that many of the lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the entire region may be ice cold, thanks to the mountain runoff and glacier melt that creates or feeds many of them.

Boating

Throughout Flathead County – both inside Glacier NP and outside – you’ll find plenty of prime boating locations. Locations like Lake McDonald and Lake Josephine provide easy access points. Many others are only accessible by portage in the backcountry between streams.

You may bring your own boat in, motorized or not, just be aware of boating restrictions on any bodies of water you visit. Additionally, there are many outfitters in the area who rent boats of all types, from speed boats to paddle boards. There are also many tours available.

White Water Rafting

If you’re feeling a canoe paddle through a lake is a little too tame for your taste, check out the many white water rafting companies in the area.

You’ll find a number of packages available with everything from one-hour trips perfect for new rafters to overnight camping raft trips that provide meals and tents along the way.

Birdwatching and Wildlife Viewing

wildlife flathead country

Wildlife abounds throughout the region, with some incredible creatures you can spot anywhere throughout the park, whether you’re hiking or enjoying a scenic drive. Some critters, of course, are shyer and might only be spotted along your backcountry adventures.

Anywhere throughout Glacier NP, you could spot:

  • American dippers
  • Bald eagles
  • Bats
  • Beavers
  • Bighorn sheep
  • Black bear
  • Clark’s nutcrackers
  • Common loons
  • Coyotes
  • Deer
  • Elk
  • Grizzly bears
  • Harlequin ducks
  • Lynx
  • Marmots
  • Moose
  • Mountain goats
  • Mountain lions
  • Northern hawk owls
  • Ospreys
  • Pikas
  • Ptarmigans
  • Swifts
  • Wolverines

That being said, you’ll note that many are predators. Be sure to prepare for the possibility of encountering bears and other large animals while you’re out hiking.

Bring a GPS locator, emergency kit, first aid kit, and bear spray for your safest adventures out there.

Photography

photography at flathead country

The many stunning views, natural wonders, and incredible wildlife make photography a popular hobby and recreational activity in the vicinity of Oberlin Falls in Glacier Park in Flathead County, Montana.

The mountain ranges, the rivers, the lakes, and the wildflowers all make for beautiful, subjects for photographers of all experience levels.

Fishing

Fishing is permitted in many of the rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds in and around Glacier NP in Flathead County.

You may wish to hire a guide through Glacier Guides or Get Your Guide, or go it on your own in the many forests and parks in the region.

Some of the best fishing can be found in

Cycling

Mountain bikers of all passions and calibers can be found peddling their way through Flathead National Forest and the surrounding areas on the dozens of incredible trails perfectly suited for such an activity.

The many off-road and rugged trails come in at different grades, elevations, and challenge levels, so you may want to check the MTB Project website for specific suggestions that land in your experience level.

Trail Running

Runners, too, are plentiful along the wooded trails of Flathead National Forest, Glacier National Park, and other naturally exciting portions of the region.

Some of the trails are a bit too rugged from running, but Great Runs and All Trails can help you navigate the right path.

Horseback Riding

horseback riding

Flathead County and surrounds are home to many ranches and horseback riding outfitters. If you fancy a trail ride, overnight adventure, or other horseback riding experience while you’re visiting the area, you’re sure to find one of the many companies has just the right option for your coveted ride.

Check their websites for locations, add-ons (like dinners, wine tastings, snacks, and so on), and trail ride lengths before you book. It’s also recommended that you book ahead or there may not be any open saddles when you’re ready to ride.

Museums and Educational Programs

A fascinating history awaits you and your crew as you make your way through Flathead County. From early pioneer settlements to First Nations sacred sites, Montana is flush with rich cultures and histories that you’re bound to want to learn about.

As you visit national parks, you’ll find ranger-led presentations available, along with visitors’ centers and the Apgar Nature Center in Glacier National Park, which is open from mid-June to late August.

Other nearby museums and galleries of interest include

Camping

Whether you’re looking to hook up an RV or pitch a tent in the backcountry of Flatheads National Forest, you’ll find plenty of camping options all around the area near Oberlin Falls.

Many of the campsites are reservable, while others are on a first-come, first serve basis. Some sites have campfire rings and picnic tables, bathrooms, and showers, and many do not – particularly the backcountry sites.

If you’re aiming to do some backcountry camping, be sure to check regulations for the particular park or forest you’re planning to pitch a tent in, as some of them have permit requirements.

And don’t forget, you’re in bear country here! Bring bear spray and bear-proof food storage to help discourage any unwanted visitors from roaming through your site at night.

Hotels and Cabin Rentals

In and around the parks, many lodging options for non-camping interests also exist, in the form of hotels, motels, cabins, and vacation home rentals. Some of the best places to book include:

Trail Routes

trail routes oberlin falls

There are no particular trails necessary for reaching Oberlin Falls. The waterfall is, instead located roadside for moderately easy access for viewers from the parking area/overlook.

Pull over on Going to the Sun Road and enjoy the views, hike-free!

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