OR – Camp Lake in Three Sisters Wilderness

Nothing beats a foray into new territory, and a hike into Three Sisters Wilderness had been on my bucket list for the past couple of years.

The 2012 lightning caused Pole Creek Fire spans 41 square miles. I hiked through this pick-up stick forest for about 1.5 hours. I wouldn’t want to be here if there was even a hint of breeze. I’m sure the spring deadfall cleanup is atrocious.  Disappointing to see, even after 4 years, the negligible amount of natural reforestation.

Fall hiking means taking advantage of weather windows. I’d rather hike in the cold, than in rain. This morning it was 22 degrees at 8am.  Yep, that’s frost on the ground.

I hiked from the Pole Creek Trailhead (FS Road 15) south on Pole Creek Trail (#4072) to Green Lakes Trail (#17) to Camp Lake Trail (#4074). This was a 15+ miles round trip, which included a bit of off-trail exploring around the lake.

I was rewarded with unobstructed views of Middle and North Sister mountains after hiking about 5 miles. 

Due to recent storms, there were lingering patches of snow.

North Sister (ooh I’d love to hike that ridge someday).

The colors on the right side of North Sister really caught my eye.

The fracture on the left side also caught my eye. 

Middle Sister 

South Sister 

Camp Lake and South Sister 

With a steep drop-off, Camp Lake welcomed a swim. 

The red glacial rock on the far side of the lake was quite a contrast to all the gray volcanic rock.

Broken Top 

Broken Top and South Sister 

Hike Details:

  • Date Hiked: 10/12/16
  • Mileage: 15.5 miles round trip
  • Elevation Gain/Loss: approximately 2800′
  • Trail Conditions: Near excellent
  • Solitude: Saw 2 hunters and 1 runner
  • Bugs: None
  • Precip: None
  • Temp: COLD morning, but warmed up nicely
  • Jan’s Cherry Picker Delight Scale: 4 cherries (out of 5)




2 thoughts on “OR – Camp Lake in Three Sisters Wilderness

    • That photo was my favorite also. It was a tough capture as I was facing the sun and needed to was for it to shift. Those are some big mountains and I lucked out to get a bluebird between bookend storms. Can’t wait to explore further.

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