A New Bench to Watch the Golden Eagles From

June 5, 2017

While the upper reworked section of the Homestead Trail is not complete, (but soon!) you can enjoy a new addition, thanks to the descendants of emigrant nonindigenous settlers that began to occupy the area in the late 1800s. 

Smith Rock is the traditional homeland of several Native American groups, including the Tenino (Warm Springs) and Northern Paiute people. The Wallenburg and Trueax families arrived much later and homesteaded along the river across from the Monument Area. The Frances Blair family provided the funds for the bench and plaque, as a memorial to their families.

Smith Rock State Park Ranger Josie Barnum shares the bench story and then shows us the view.

The bench is located on one of the last switchbacks on the upper Homestead Trail directly across the Monument Area.

You can get to it two ways, either from the trail below, or from the top, within 10 minutes of parking your car at the Turnaround Parking lot.

It offers a great view of the park and river gorge, as well as the golden eagles nesting on the wall face to the left of the largest wall, the Monument.


Bring your binoculars and you can watch right from the bench as the eagles soar usually in the morning and late afternoon to feed their babies.