Great glaciers carved Diamond Peak after volcanic activity created the mountain. Today, at 8,744 feet, it surpasses every other summit in this region of the Cascade Mountains. Diamond Peak Wilderness, which straddles the crest of the Cascades, rests largely beneath a dense forest of mountain hemlock, lodgepole and western pine, and silver, noble, and other true firs. Snowfields remain most of the year in pockets above the tree line, and dozens of small lakes, one to 28 acres in size, bejewel the high country. Pikas and marmots scurry about the numerous scree slopes, along with Roosevelt elk, at least until November snows drive them out. Stinging hordes of mosquitoes hatch from the first of July through much of August. Excluded from Wilderness designation but on the eastern and southern boundaries you'll find three large scenic lakes: Summit, Crescent, and Odell. Approximately 14 miles of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail pass through the area and near Diamond Peak itself, and another 38 miles of trails give access to many lovely lakeside campsites. Mountain climbers scaling Diamond Peak's nontechnical summit often set up base camps at Marie Lake, Divide Lake, and Rockpile Lake. Much of this area is worthy of off-trail exploration.
A very beautiful hike. It's uphill most of the way in. The trail switch backs up hill through an alpine forest. We hiked in late August and there were no mosquito's or water in the creeks. The lake is just picturesque. It was a little over an hour to hike in and another 35 min. to walk around the lake. We drove from Eugene to Hills Creek Reservoir to Lake Timpanogas. We drove a small sedan and had no trouble getting there. The road around Hills Creek is very curvy and took 2.15 hours to get there.
Highly recommend! Trails are well-maintained but still offer a challenge. Plenty of ponds and waterfalls to see along the way. Although, as a warning, don't forget mosquito repellent! They hassled me almost the entire way but it was worth it. Indigo Lake is beautiful and pristine. It offers secluded camp sites, often with a fire pit and table. The road up to the trailhead from Crescent Lake was rugged but almost as entertaining as the hike. Recommend 4-wheel drive and all-terrain tires if you choose this route. This was absolutely one of my favorite hikes!