If you’re afraid of heights, you might not want to look down for this next adventure, but if you’re up for the challenge, get ready for an educational eco-tour experience you won’t soon forget, and it can only be found right here in Marion County.

Just 30 minutes from Salem, Tree Climbing at Silver Falls is the only tree-climbing tour operator in the United States with government-permitted access to guide participants up some of the largest and rarest trees in the world. They’re experts at getting guests up close and personal with nature as they explore ancient forests, taking them to new heights as they learn about the unique ecology of these ecosystems.

Tree Climbing Silver Falls
Owner of Tree Climbing at Silver Falls Leo Rosen-Fischer started AdventureTerra in 2012, and from it, his dream business of sharing the experience of tree climbing at Silver Falls State Park came to fruition. Photo courtesy: Tree Climbing at Silver Falls/Leo Rosen-Fischer

Reaching New Heights at Tree Climbing at Silver Falls State Park

Brave visitors today to Tree Climbing at Silver Falls State Park may find themselves reaching for the tippy top of the treetops, but the story of this unique recreational adventure tour begins with their feet on the ground. Though they started in 2021, it took them about two years of working with the Oregon State Parks before the program could actually get started.

Owner and founder Leo Rosen-Fischer described the process as long and thorough. “I appreciate and understand the need to make sure any activity in the park is not only sustainable but also hopefully regenerative for the environment,” he says.

After extensive environmental reviews, which included making sure that the now designated climbing trees were healthy, had no wildlife inhabiting them, and that they would not have a negative effect on local wildlife, along with working with local park management, the recreational tree climbing program was ready to extend its branches and welcome treetop explorers. With Oregon State Parks’ permission, Tree Climbing at Silver Falls became the only tour operator in the United States with government-permitted access to guide participants up some of the largest and rarest trees in the world, with some of these old-growth trees measuring between 200 to 300 feet.

Tree Climbing Silver Falls
These giant old-growth trees in Silver Falls State Park make adventure seekers look like ants in comparison to their mighty trunks. Photo courtesy: Tree Climbing at Silver Falls/Leo Rosen-Fischer

The Roots of Passion Run Deep at Tree Climbing at Silver Falls

While the thrills and excitement of tree climbing, what further enhances the experience and transcends Tree Climbing at Silver Falls beyond a recreational activity is the passion behind Leo and the instructors and guides by his side. As a collective, they have more than 50 years of combined experience, with some guides managing recreational tree climbing programs that have taken around 1,000 people a year climbing.

“I love sharing a fun experience with people that they never thought was possible before. I love guiding people on an adventure where people create lifelong, unforgettable memories. I think unforgettable experiences and memories with friends or family are the most important things in life, and climbing giant trees does this,” shared a heartfelt Leo.

Like a twinkle above the tree line, Tree Climbing at Silver Falls believes everyone should have a chance to wish on this shooting star while viewing it from above. For this reason, they are dedicated to creating memorable adventures for everyone, including individuals with disabilities. They continually strive to upgrade their practices, as well as acquire new equipment to help more people have access to the experience. They encourage anyone curious about participating but unsure if it’s possible to give them a call, and they’ll work with you to make it happen.

In addition to their creative adaptiveness and dedication to meet the needs of those with disabilities so that they too may experience the joy of tree climbing, Tree Climbing at Silver Falls also firmly believes in fostering a welcoming and inclusive environment for everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender identity, or sexual orientation. In solidarity with the BIPOC and LGBTIQA+ communities, the team works hard to provide a safe and supportive space for all individuals, ensuring that each adventurer feels respected, valued, and celebrated as they embark on an incredible tree-climbing journey.

Tree Climbing Silver Falls
Enjoy the simple things like hanging out among the trees at Tree Climbing at Silver Falls. Photo courtesy: Tree Climbing at Silver Falls/Leo Rosen-Fischer

An Adventure With a Mission to Educate on Forest Ecology at Silver Falls State Park

Along with their goal of giving every thrill-seeker a chance to experience firsthand the euphoria that comes with scaling these incredibly and almost unbelievably tall trees, Tree Climbing in Silver Falls is also on a mission to provide education about the unique ecology of these ecosystems. Along the way, instructors will educate participants on the importance of protecting and preserving forests so they can turn into old-growth forests for future generations and wildlife.

Each guide is a wealth of knowledge and well-versed in the workings of old-growth forests, which you’ll be an expert on yourself in no time as you discover the role these old-growth trees play in our local ecosystem. While it may seem like learning disguised as fun as you begin your ascent to the mighty timber’s zenith, the view from the top brings it all into perspective.

“Tree climbing creates a closer, more educated bond to nature,” explained Leo. “And the importance of protecting our forests, with our participants, so it makes me happy to see people walk away with a great appreciation and perspective of trees.”

Tree Climbing Silver Falls
Tree Climbing at Silver Falls Kids Tree Climbing Camp is one of the best and most unique outdoor kid camps in the area, lasting one to two weeks each summer for kids aged 7 to 13. Photo courtesy: Tree Climbing at Silver Falls/Leo Rosen-Fischer

From Kids Tree Climbing Camp to Tree Camping, A Plethora of Ways to Reach for the Sky Tree Climbing at Silver Falls

As the canopy beckons overhead, it’s all onwards and upwards from here. Knuckles white, a stomach full of butterflies floating you upwards, gravity ceases to exist beneath you. There’s the promise of the adventure of a lifetime at Tree Climbing at Silver Falls. The only remaining question is which adventure you will choose.

The tour operator offers a variety of courses to choose from for those interested in experiencing the unique euphoria that comes with tree climbing. For instance, recreational activities have proven to be great for team-building, and as such, they offer customized one- to three-day team-building courses that allow for group growth. Multi-day courses are offered to those interested in taking up tree climbing as a hobby, during which time you’ll learn how to climb trees yourself and learn all about the equipment you’ll need.

At Kids Tree Climbing Camp, kids as young as 7 to 13 can aspire to new heights. Besides learning all about the art of tree climbing, other fun activities at this one-of-a-kind camp experience include learning about ecology, hiking, exploring waterfalls, slack-lining between trees, tree yoga hundreds of feet off the ground, napping in tree hammocks or tents, and shooting giant slingshots to set lines into new trees.

Tree Climbing Silver Falls
Tree camping is an entirely different level than tree climbing itself, where you’ll fall asleep to a sky full of stars as the tree rocks you to sleep and wake up to the morning sun greeting you from the horizon up high. Photo courtesy: Tree Climbing at Silver Falls/Leo Rosen-Fischer

Parents can even opt to have their children participate in overnight camping in the trees as part of their tree-climbing camp experience. Tree Climbing at Silver Falls is the only place in the nation where you can camp in some of the world’s largest old-growth trees. The magic of tree camping and sleeping amongst the stars isn’t reserved just for youngsters. This amazing and unforgettable once-in-a-lifetime opportunity is bookable every day between May 1 and September 30 and is further enhanced with sunset dinner and sunrise breakfast options.

Of course, no matter which tree-climbing excursion you book, each one promises to open your eyes to a whole new world from a treetop’s perspective. Whether you’re a seasoned climber, a curious beginner seeking exhilarating climbs or a peaceful night spent amongst the stars, Tree Climbing at Silver Falls offers adventures that cater to every spirit. Explore their website and let your sense of adventure guide as you embark on this breathtaking journey through the trees.

Tree Climbing at Silver Falls
Silver Falls State Park
20024 Silver Falls Hwy SE, Sublimity
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