Summary: We wanted to do a quick hike on a Saturday morning - this one fit the bill. If you wanted to skip the gym and do somethitg outdoors, this one would work. As long as you weren't expecting great views, a mountain stream, a great destiantion - you'd be fine. This trail leads past Hidden Lake to the PCT above and connects with other trails and loops that you could do. That and going in June when the rhododendrons are in bloom seem like the only reason I would do this one again. There are no vistas, no streams - just a hike that starts tough then esases out to rate an overall "moderate" through new/mid-growth timber to a less than impressive lake. I will do it again in June to see if the rhodys and the volume of water make it any more desirable - but as a summer destination this one was a dog. Do Mirror Lake instead (see my other hikes) if you want an easy destination lake. It was a good aerobics workout for the first 1/2 mile, and it might be a good trail to run.
Trailhead: Head east from Portland on Hwy. 26 toward Mt. Hood - 6 miles from the Zigzag ranger station, just a few miles above Rhododendron on a big bend before you start climbing into the Government Camp / Ski Bowl area, take Forest Service Road 2639 on the left heading northeast. Follow this road up a few miles just past the Kiwanis Camp, which is on the rght side of the road, to the trailhead on the left side. There is a big gravel lot with plenty of parking. A Federal Forest Service Permit is required - $5.00/ day or $30.00 annual fee. (Lat:45.31337 Lon:-121.7996)
Trail Guides for Hidden Lake, on the west side of Mt. Hood:
Pacific Northwest Hiking 1000 Hikes in OR and WA
by Ron C. Judd and Dan A. Nelsen (Avalon Travel Publishing)
Best Seasons: Fall, Spring, Summer,
User Groups: Hikers, Dogs, Horses,
Ranger Contact: Zigzag Ranger Station: (503) 622-3191
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Steve Snyder, who has posted 13 other hikes on this site
Trail Reviews Submit your own review
Reviewed by OET Member on 9/24/2007
NOT an easy trail for horseback riders. Especially if you take the loop to Paradise Trail. Must have experienced horses and experienced riders or you could end up with a serious accident.
Reviewed by dsr on 9/7/2006
Beginning of height was a bit steep. last mile was delightfull...Lake was better than I remembered it from my 1st hike 46 years ago..Trout were jumping and my fishing stuff was back at our cabin...we'll be back...my wife really thought it was well worth the effort
Reviewed by MJL on 7/29/2006
3 things we wish we'd known: 1) Must buy pass ahead at ranger station; no envelopes at trailhead; 2) road sign says 39, not 2639; 3) initial ascent too steep for very young children or unfit older folks.
Reviewed by BRS on 4/23/2006
Didn't make it all the way up due to snow at about mile 8 or 9 off 214. About 6-8." Couple weeks without snow and it should be good.
Reviewed by gene on 6/29/2005
Rhodies should be in full bloom next week or so. one week ago they were going great off the trail but just opening near the trail and by the lake. mosquitoes still going strong. to avoid them, wait a week and take the twin trail on the other side of the canyon to Paradise Park. see the meadows and rhodies in one (kinda long but all downhill coming back) trip.
Reviewed by EDW on 4/21/2005
Took my 9 year old twins. Great exercise, but tough for kids in some spots. The lake is not much to see, may come later in the spring and let the kids look for frogs and salamanders. Even in April the mosquitos were vicious.
Reviewed by S. Calm on 7/14/2004
This was a cool hike on a hot day in mid July. It was nice, but the lake was somewhat disappointing. Lined with mud and reeds, its a haven for mosquitos. My dad (above) and I still had a great time. All of the rhododendrons must be beautiful when in bloom.
Reviewed by B. Calm on 7/11/2004
Took this on the spur of the moment. Pretty good exercize. Nice to be in the woods. Highway 26 traffic noise stays with you for awhile. and when it fades, the mosquitoes start in. So be prepared for that. Might come back and follow it to the PCT and over to Timberline, someday.
Notice: Traveling in the backcountry can be hazardous. You are responsible for informing yourself about these hazards and taking necessary precautions. Information on this web site comes from volunteer reporters and may contain errors or omissions. A current guidebook and proper equipment are essential for safe enjoyment of the hikes posted on this site.
Keys: Oregon Hiking, Oregon Trails, Oregon Hikes, Clackamas County Hiking, Clackamas County Trails, Clackamas County Hikes