Oregon’s newest state park is also its second largest. Next to Silver Falls, Cottonwood Canyon’s 8,000 acres of John Day River, jagged tawny canyons and rocky, sweeping grasslands creates an ample kingdom for earthly investigation!
A 90 pound steel wagon wheel takes up residence at this state park and a working barn (leftover from its ranching history) can also be found. Cottonwood offers a primitive campground, miles of hiking trails, bike and horse friendly paths, a nearby boat launch for kayaks, canoes and drift boats, Steelhead and Smallmouth Bass inhabited waters and fauna that includes Rocky Mountain Elk, Bighorn Sheep, coyote, mule deer and a wide array of winged wildlife. Come experience all the untamed terrain and take advantage of the scope--get lost (without actually getting lost) and forget about the grids of city living.
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History of Cottonwood Canyon State Park
The 8,000 acres of Cottonwood Canyon State Park, alongside the John Day River, is Oregon’s newest state park. It was a ranch before being sold first to the Western Rivers Conservancy in 2008 and then by that nonprofit to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department from 2009-201. It’s rugged canyon landscape makes a powerful backdrop for the historic equipment leftover from its ranching days.