Hiking in Oregon is one of our favorite things to do. As we explored this diverse state, we realized how many beautiful lakes that it has. From Central Oregon to the far tip in the north east, these lakes are worth some of the grueling trails you take to get to them.
Oregon’s Best Hikes to Alpine Lakes
Strawberry Lake in Strawberry Wilderness
Head to eastern Oregon in the Strawberry Wilderness where one of my absolute favorite lakes in Oregon is. We even hiked through snow to get to it! We hiked this trail in May, which as mentioned, it still had a lot of snow, so for it to be a bit more comfortable I would check reviews starting mid June. The road to Strawberry Campground doesn’t open until the snow is gone, so it makes it a 7 mile, 1,400′ round trip hike.
No Name Lake in Three Sisters Wilderness
Located in Central Oregon just outside of Bend, Oregon is No Name Lake. One of the most popular and most beautiful lakes in Central Oregon. This hike is either a 15 mile round trip grueling hike from Todd Lake or 4.5 miles round trip from the actual trailhead where you need a high clearance vehicle to get to it. There is limited parking and so during fire season please do not park on the grass.
Moraine Lake is also located in Central Oregon just outside of Bend, Oregon. The trail starts at Devil’s lake, which is stunning in its own right. Emerald Green, but no hike. Moraine Lake’s trail is the same as the Three Sisters Trail, except it is only about 4.5 miles round trip. But this hike goes straight up and then straight back down. Through beautiful forest and then find the opening to views of Broken Top where No Name Lake is.
Maxwell Lake in Eagle Cap Wilderness
Located in the far north eastern tip of Oregon is the Wallowas which hold Eagle Cap Wilderness. Probably the most beautiful wilderness area in Oregon. Hikes in this area are Moderate to Extreme in this area because they all have elevation. While the shortest hike we did was 8 miles, it had 2,500 feet in elevation gain in the first four miles. But when that climb is over you have one of the most beautiful, emerald lakes.
Ice Lake in Eagle Cap Wilderness
The next hike after Maxwell to attempt is Ice Lake. As one of the most popular hikes in the area, it will be busy. At 15 miles round trip with 3,500′ in elevation gain, most people use it to camp overnight. There were beautiful spots surrounding the lake, but remember to follow the rules for how close you can camp to water.
Wildhorse Lake in Steens Mountain
In south eastern Oregon are the Steens Mountains. Surrounded by flat farmland this beautiful mountain range has deep cut canyons and this gem of a lake. It is a short hike, but it can get very hot in the summer when there is actually access to the trail. Then it is a steep hike down and then back up, but you can take a dip in the lake. When we are there, there was a skinny dipper, so be aware of that!
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