Oregon’s Tamolitch Blue Pool in the Willamette National Forest is a very popular hike in Oregon. This is also a hike that can be intimidating to new hikers. There are tons of questions out there about this particular destination. Some of the recent questions I have heard include “Can you swim in blue pool Oregon?” “Is the Tamolitch blue pool hike family-friendly?” “Is Tamolitch pool really as blue as it looks on social media?” Well, for these questions, the answers are yes, yes, and yes! That being said, there are lots of other questions out there about this famous Oregon destination.
If you are making it a goal to hit Oregon’s best hiking trails you absolutely have to include blue pool on this list. It truly is a beautiful place that you must see to believe. It’s one of my favorite hikes that I have done in recent years. Of course, it’s not the hike to do if you are looking for fewer people, but even if you don’t like crowds, I think you’ll like this one!
10 Things to Know About Oregon’s Tamolitch Blue Pool
Can You Swim in Blue Pool Oregon?
Yes, you can swim in Oregon blue pool. That being said, the water in the pool comes from an underground spring and the water temperature is incredibly cold, which can pose a risk to swimmers. Additionally, the pool is located within the boundaries of the Willamette National Forest, where swimming is generally not advised due to safety regulations and environmental concerns. Additionally, you will have to make your way down a very steep embankment in order to get to the pool. You are definitely swimming at your own risk. Forest service rangers and other emergency services are likely hours away.
Is the Tamolitch Blue Pool Hike Family Friendly?
Yes, this hike is a relatively easy one that is definitely family friendly. We had 3 kids with us on our hike here, one of which was in a backpack carrier. We had no issues. There was some rocky, rough terrain here though so I definitely do not recommend bringing stroller.
Is Tamolitch Pool Really as Blue as it Looks on Social Media?
You may think that it’s filters and settings that make the water look so blue, but I can assure you, that is not the case. The pool gets its name for a reason. the stunningly clear water appears a beautiful blue water pool. It’s like something that you would see in a movie or travel magazine. The color of the water will leave you breathless as you stop to take in the spectacular view.
Are Summer Weekends a Good Time to Visit Oregon’s Blue Pool?
Summer weekends and summer months in general are definitely the most popular time for people to visit this popular hike, but honestly, we went in the middle of the week and it was pretty busy then too. I don’t really have an issue with crowds so I would still visit on summer weekends, but those who want fewer people, should definitely shoot for a different day. The larger crowds tend to thin out in the fall months.
Is There Free Parking Available?
There is free parking available at the trailheads here, but again, this is a very popular hiking trail, so I highly, highly recommend arriving before 9 am so that you can find a spot. The parking area will fill up quickly.
I also recommend that you DO NOT leave valuables in your vehicle.
Are There Restrooms Available at Blue Pool?
There are vault toilets available to use at the trailhead here.
When Is the Seasonal Waterfall Visible?
If you wish to see the seasonal waterfall during your visit to Blue Pool, your best bet would be to visit this trail from April through June.
Is this Trail Open Year Round?
Yes, the McKenzie River Trailhead and trail to Blue Pool is open year-round, however, the best time to hike this trail is from April through the end of November or early part of December. Hiking during the winter months, you will likely encounter packed snow and as such will need spikes.
Are Dogs Allowed on The Trail?
Yes, dogs are allowed on the trail! Be sure to keep them leashed especially since there are larger crowds.
How Long is The Hike to Oregon’s Blue Pool?
The Tamolitch Blue Pool hike is a part of the McKenzie River National Recreation Trail. While the entire trail is approximately 26 miles long, the Blue Pool portion of this hike is just 4 miles round trip. The McKenzie River Trail will offer you beautiful views of the blue river, the Cascade Mountains, old-growth forest and so much more! There is no shortage of stunning Pacific Northwest views along the way.
The Bottom Line
Blue Pool is one of the best hikes in the entire state. It offers a beautiful view, a unique hiking experience, and many opportunities for some wonderful Instagram photos! There are also some other really great places to visit in this area of Central Oregon. If you are looking for more fun stuff to do once you are done with your Blue Pool hike, check out some of these great places:
Some of the Most Beautiful Waterfalls in the state (including Koosah Falls, Proxy Falls, Sahalie Falls, and more), check out this post for a list!