Watson Falls is arguably the best waterfall in the North Umpqua River basin. The falls hurtle over a cathedral amphitheater wall of basalt, crashing into a long talus slope covered in moss and vine maple. The falls plunge over enough of an overhang that occasional gusts of wind can toss the water sideways or upwards in rare cases (usually later in the summer when there is less water in the creek). Watson Falls is often referred to as dropping 272 feet and being the 3rd tallest waterfall in Oregon. We measured the falls in 2009 to stand 302 feet tall, but our methods have a margin of error of up to about 15-20 feet. However, our measurement sparked the interest of personnel in the Umpqua National Forest, and they sent engineers out to properly measure the falls and came up with a figure of 292.7 feet - so our measurement was only off by 9 feet (which isn't bad at all). This revised number won't give Watson Falls the distinction of being one of Oregon's few three-hundred foot waterfalls, but that doesn't mean its any less impressive of a waterfall.
- Watson Falls is the Official name of this waterfall.
The origin of the name of the creek is unknown. Watson Mountain in the Glide area was named for a James Watson, who settled on the banks of Fall Creek near Glide in 1854. The name may have been carried over for the same individual. Watson Falls was likely named for the creek.
Watson Falls can be found along Fish Creek Road #37, just over 2 miles east of Toketee Falls and Lake, itself about 43 miles east of Glide or 16 miles west of Diamond Lake. The parking area is about 500 feet south of Highway 138 on the right side. The trail crosses Road 37 and climbs easily but steadily up to the base of the falls in about 1/3 mile.