Explore July 2018 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

July 2018 Map
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The view is worth it! The trail is overgrown in many areas and a few downed trees to navigate but completely worth the view!

I got the chance to hike this trail on August 17, 2018. I started from the parking lot at the top in the park. the first 3 tenths of a mile are easy, but when you get to where the trail starts, it goes up and continues up and switches back and forth. it does level from time to time and eventually gets rocky because you are in the crags. If you aren't a skilled hiker, give yourself time and breaks often. take lots of water and if you want take the trail to Indian springs to fill up your water bottle. also if you start the hike from the upper parking lot, the climb is only 2.8 miles one way. My suggestion, go as far as you can, but get to at least where the trees start to think, so you can get a closer look at the crags. Well worth it.

hiking
1 day ago

9:30. On a Saturday. Not very busy on the way down. A dozen people around the lakeshore. Saw 6 or 7 times as many on the way back up around 11:30.

Smoke obscured the view initially. Once we were about .25m down, the smoke thinned and we got to see some nice views. Worth the trip despite the smoke.

Very steep. All downhill on the way down and uphill on the way up. 7 year old held his own. Might be rough on families that don’t hike much and have small children.

Step but with the views. Get the boat to wizard island for an amazing day in the park.

Good trail gets progressively steeper as you go. a few nice views along the way but probably the best 4500 foot viewpoint in the state on top. may be best selection of berries too. a definite "must do" in spite of its low elevation.

hiking
5 days ago

A must do for anyone hiking in or near Crater! Reserve your spot on the shuttle to Wizard Island (3 hour tour is cool). Big steep day, quick elevation change unexpectedly hit me at the summit, but it was also due to the smoke from fires. Jump in the cold clear lake near the docks, sun yourself & picnic til the shuttle returns. Prepare for your incline back out of this magical place. Plenty of benches to pause at on the way back up, take a breath and enjoy the scenery.

hiking
7 days ago

We returned this year and the hike down to Crater Lake was just as memorable, but also more crowded. We had absolutely perfect weather and the water was as blue as ever. We chose to drive around the lake rather than take the boat tour to Wizard Island. Suspect one day we'll do that too. Worth the half hour down and 45 minutes up. Enjoy!

Short trail with lots of switchbacks, it’s shaded and has benches along the way. Very well maintained and is the only trail that takes you to the water

Hiked this trail earlier this week. As many other have stated this trail started out in an uphill and never ended until you reached the top. We saw one goat and it climbed to the highest point on the summit. There was a lot of smoke from the Maple Fire so we didn’t have the spectacular views that you would normally have on this trail. Because of that I will be doing this trail again when I know it will be a clear day.

Quick hour-total hike to the only point to access the waters of Crater Lake. Thankfully, the smoke from the nearby wildfires blew in a different direction thanks to a shift in the winds so it wasn’t nearly as smoky as was the past couple days. Going down was easy but just remember you have to go back up!

fishing
12 days ago

The reviews aren't wrong. This hike is definitely worth it, but man, it is straight uphill. Make sure to bring a lot of water. My buddy and I brought a gallon + two pints between the two of us and nearly ran out by the time we got to the lake. Not an easy hike.

We also got pretty damn close to two black bears on our way back which was a bit scary. All in all certainly worth it though. Gorgeous lake.

A note on fishing: as the hike is pretty strenuous I thought the fishing would be good (thought the difficulty would deter others). It wasn't terrible fishing but it also wasn't better than mediocre. Fish were pretty small and we only got a few bites in four hours on the water. The lake is also super hard to get around which confines you to only a couple fishing spots on one end of the lake.

Enjoyable trail. LOTS of stairs and pretty much is a constant uphill hike. Big Boulder field that needs to be crossed but the trail management has organized steps out of the smaller boulders. Above the treeline there is a lot of loose gravel. When you're nearly to the top it gets pretty steep. At that point there are a couple of spots where you may need to use your hands to pull yourself up to the next step. The flowers at the top were beautiful, the squirrels were friendly and very entertaining and the mountain goats up there have no fear of humans. One mama and her baby walked right through a crowd of hikers that were gathered at the summit. Last of all, the view is spectacular!

went last year. got whooped and had the time of my life. anazing area. can't wait to go back.

Great trail for all and the dogs were allowed. Well maintained and it’s an easy hike for all.

Hike was a challenge

This is a well done trail and is exactly how it's described. It is strenuous especially on the way back up. It is not meant for elderly or unprepared. We did the boat tour to Wizard Island which was awesome.

So , awesome views good experience and a great workout. Downsides is it’s far from the main areas of the park also very far down a dirt road which is tough on your car. Very exposed not a lot of shade. No bathrooms nearby they were all closed. This was last year end of July 2017. Cinder means one step forward two steps back but on the bright side it is only .5 miles up the Cinder cone. The views from the top are magnificent though 360 views. This is a definitely a must at least once in your life. How many people can say they’ve climbed a volcano! It was great to have that feeling of accomplishment at the end of it all.

hiking
24 days ago

Short but steep hike to the shore and back. A good way to jump in and swim in the lake.

Amazingly rewarding yet ass-kicking hike to the peak but so beautiful when you wake up and hike up to the peak to catch the sunrise in the morning! lots of over growth in some areas and walked passed a bee hive just be careful going up moonshine flats

Very well maintained and easy to walk on trail. Yes, it's all up/down but it's short and very well maintained and wide. My 8 year old couldn't get enough of the big rock that everyone jumped off of... He loved it!

Glad to have hiked a volcano, however, loose gravel the whole way up and sand path on the way to and from the volcano. Good calf workout but not the most enjoyable hike we did in the park!

Trail was short but steep. However, there are fires in Oregon right now and the area is very smoky. Visibility is limited. Views were still good at the bottom of the hike, but lake views from the top were almost impossible to see. Good quick workout though, may be back to this park at some point in the future.

Moderate is not an accurate rating for this hike. It is tough. Steep from the start of the trial all the way up. Trail is rocky towards the top - definitely need good shoes for this one and recommend poles because coming down is steep and tricky. All that being said, the hike was fun and challenging and beautiful. Great views even though the hike up was foggy, it cleared up at the top. Keep your eye out for mountain goats :)

Busy, busy! Popular trail, but it’s a great one. If you have knee issues I’d advise bringing your trekking poles for the way down. Those big steps down are tough on the knees. We went on a Saturday, we’ve been during the work week and it’s definitely quieter.

hiking
28 days ago

Beautiful hike and lake. I followed the directions which the directions Icon gave me on this website and it took me a longer back way. It was very rocky, rutty road. Luckily I drive a jeep. Follow the sign on HWY 3 that says Boulder Lake trail. Big brown sign. I went back the correct way and it was way smoother and faster.

backpacking
29 days ago

Unbelievable lake with a modest hike

This trail, for me, is an obligation. I just had to touch the water. Mostly, a well shaded trail, but not very scenic. Nice hike back up.

Amazing views!!! Stayed the night in the meadows right next to a water source. If you plan on overnighting, there is a camp spot around 1.5 miles with a water source, we wished we would of camped here so that we dropped our packs before the real steep climb. Just wanted to add that in case anyone was looking! Overall an awesome, yet difficult hike. Make sure you cross the street to start the hike, there is a set of stairs that looks like the trail by the parking lot and it is not apart of this trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Small, quiet, old-growth-y. More walk than hike, it's something to do if hanging at/visting the lodge. Might be a bit tame, but Mee-Maw, Pop-Pops, and even faut Aunt Sharon can do this one with ease.

Perfect day to be on a mountain. This trail is overgrown in parts, but it’s still easy to follow. Wildflowers are really blooming right now, as well as salmon berry and huckleberry. Easily the best smelling trail I’ve been on! Mainly in Forrest most of the way with some spots you break out into beautiful meadows with steep slopes all around you. Moonshine Flats is a great spot to camp if that’s your plan. The first glimpse of the view you are in store for is when you hit the last big switchback getting to the summit ridge. Once you hit the summit, enjoy the incredible 360 views, along with lunch. I think this is more around 8 miles round trip however. But a beautiful hike. Highly recommend.

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