Whitewater Trail #3429

Area Status: Temporarily Closed
This area is Closed

This is one of several ways to reach Jefferson Park in the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness. The trail begins to gain elevation quickly from the parking area, climbing through large Douglas-Fir, Western Hemlock forest with a few Pacific Yew and Western White Pine interspersed. At 1.5 miles the trail intersects with the Triangulation Trail (#3373), which leads to Triangulation Peak. Turn right to stay on the Whitewater Trail. At around 3 miles your climb pays off with views of Mt. Jefferson. At four miles you will reach the crossing of Whitewater Creek, whiuch has no bridge. Depending on water levels this can be a difficult crossing. The trail joins the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) just past mile 4. Keep left at PCT, which crosses one or two small creeks and a few small meadows leading north to access Jefferson Park.


  • Distance: 4.2 miles (one way)
  • Elevation: begins at 4000 ft. elevation and ends at 5550 ft. elevation
  • Difficulty: Moderate

At a Glance

Current Conditions: New for 2021, trails in Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Washington, and Three Sisters Wilderness Areas will require a Central Cascades Wilderness Permit for overnight use and some will require one for day-use. Learn more.
Fees This site requires a Northwest Forest Pass or Interagency pass. To reduce the risk of theft, we no longer accept payment on-site. Day-use passes and annual passes are available electronically, by mail, and through local vendors. Visit: https://go.usa.gov/xfW75 to learn more about these passes and where to purchase them.
Permit Info: Wilderness Self issue permit required
Usage: Heavy
Busiest Season: August - October
Closest Towns: Detroit, Oregon
Water: Water from streams should be filtered.
Passes: A valid Recreation Pass is required at Whitewater Trailhead.
Information Center: Detroit Ranger District
44125 North Santiam Highway SE
Detroit, OR 97342

General Information

General Notes:

Map of Whitewater trail


Access from Whitewater Trailhead (Fee site)


25 vehicles  

For safety purposes do not park vehicles on both sides of parking area beyond the restroom.  

There is a wide spot 100 yards before the parking area for trailers.  Do not park trailers past the last main curve of the road before the parking area.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



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Day Hiking

Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult


Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult

Horse Riding & Camping

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  Area/Length : 
4.2 miles

  Latitude : 

  Longitude : 

  Elevation : 
4000 feet - 5550 feet