hiking

views

forest

walking

nature trips

wildlife

dogs on leash

lake

trail running

birding

dog friendly

mountain biking

kid friendly

wild flowers

camping

backpacking

river

snowshoeing

fishing

waterfall

horseback riding

cross country skiing

skiing

paddle sports

no dogs

The Deschutes National Forest is a United States National Forest located in parts of Deschutes, Klamath, Lake, and Jefferson counties in central Oregon. It comprises 1.8 million acres along the east side of the Cascade Range.

Definitely need a high clearance vehicle for the upper trailhead. If you can make it past the first half mile you’ll be fine. All the elk are still at the top but they look like rocks from a distance until you get close. Awesome hike.

Hiked mid-September. Awesome HIKE, spectacular views of the mountains. No bugs this time. You do gain some elevation, but the views are well worth it. VERY popular hike, so don't expect to have the trail to yourself, even Mid-week. There were 20+ cars at the trailhead when we arrived at 10am. Remember to fill out a free hiking pass at the trailhead; turn in part of it & keep part of it on you when doing this hike. Enjoy!

love love love. Summit 2 times in a three week period. love this place

Absolutely beautiful hike with a huge payoff. Do not drink the creek water on the way up, as there are dead elk in the lake.

Unfortunately I lost a wedding band/ engagement ring somewhere between the lake and the parking lot on September 11th. Please let there be good in the world!

Absolutely breathtaking hike with a HUGE payoff.
Unfortunately I lost a wedding band somewhere on the hike between the lake and the parking lot on September 11th. It would have been in a red silk zipper bag. Please please please let there be a good person in the world!

Crazy 360 views of distant mountains, lava rocks, and forest. Observatory made of lava rock and the trails are short and easy walk.

Nice, friendly trail. No bugs today.

Great hike. There are certain steep bits but overall it isn’t too bad. The end of the hike marked on the map is nice, but if you want great views continue along the unmaintained trail along the ridge. There’s spectacular views of broken top and no name lake at broken foot an additional 1.5-2 miles further.

The lake is suuuuuuuuuper low right now but still very pretty. Perfect hike for my family (which includes a moody 4 year old). Excited to go back when there’s more water. Trail is empty. Only ran into one other person.

Easy and super informative trail. 4-year-old loved it and the parents learned a lot too. Maybe bring more water - it’s the high desert and wasn’t hot but coming from high humidity we are feeling the dry air!

hiking
5 days ago

This hike is TOUGH but well worth the effort. We went on Saturday with no views at the summit except for the beautiful smiling faces that were thankful they made it. Started around 8:30am and made it back to the car by 4:00pm with a long stop for lunch. If there’s clouds at the top when you start, don’t count on them to burn off. The views up to the clouds were great though, broken top, a few glacier fed lakes, and the endless trees surrounding. Bring warm clothes and plenty of food and water and it’s a great way to spend the day!

Beautiful trail, really not to hard for the amazing view rewards. The road getting to the trail was fairly rough in sections, I wouldn’t have made it (with a Prius) if it was wet or muddy.

hiking
5 days ago

Two week back to back hiking at South sister trail. First week with great weather but we didn't manage time well and had to stop at the glacier, one mile shy of the top. I went there again yesterday. Weather was good initially but changed quickly. It was freezing cold with thick fog and gusty wind while climbing up. Even the rocks started to frost. Stayed at the summit all by myself for 15 miserable minutes with absolute no view and a shivering body. Finished in 7 tough hours. Will go again!

hiking
5 days ago

First time hiking South Sister and wow, what an experience! I expected it to be cold at the summit as warned, but not 6°F with 30-40mph winds! Clouds blanketed the summit, but the reward was just making it up. Although I had my Nano Puff jacket to keep warm, next time I'm bringing some heavy insulated gloves.

Saw many hikers, about 200 I'd say. Some made a u-turn before the last 1-2 miles to the summit. I think that was the right choice as the weather at the top would have just made it unbearable. Trekking poles are a life saver on knees and slippage, so don't leave home without em!

Road from Crecent Lake to Summit Lake trailhead REQUIRES high clearance 4WD vehicle.

hiking
6 days ago

Garmin InReach tracked this at 5.9 miles. This hike is a great workout, unfortunately it was cloudy and I didn't get to see what the views were like. Scree makes it fun, but I wouldn't recommend this trail for dogs.

I saw some hikers walking up the road at the beginning. Not sure if this was on purpose or they didn't see the trail. There is a trail, it goes to the right and into the woods. Don't take the road, that's lame and not as scenic.

hiking
6 days ago

This was by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done! I’m so stoked to say I made it to the top. This is absolutely not for beginner hikers. Be prepared... plenty of water, a day’s worth of food (you won’t believe how many calories you will burn) and layers of clothing. We hit all the elements on this one. It started out sunny but the last half we hit 35 mph winds and low visibility. At the top there were snowflakes and icicles on our clothes. I highly recommend packing gators so dirt and rocks don’t get in your socks/shoes. I can’t stress enough about packing your trekking poles. Sooo glad I did it!!

Fabulous hike with several types of terrain. Went all the way to the ridge just below Three Fingered Jack for a 7.5 mike trip. Fall weather was in full force. Saw both a calving glacier and a pronghorn sheep. The loop is pretty kid friendly and my little one (10) made it to Cirque Lake without too much trouble.

Beware though he road up has a few sandy spots that you will really want/need a high clearance AWD/4x4 vehicle to cross - especially after in rains.

I take issue with the AllTrails description saying that it is near the Klamath River, it is not. The closest river would be the Deschutes.

If you leave from the Broken Top TH (not Todd Lake) you’ll want a high clearance vehicle that you don’t mind beating up.

That said, Broken Top, the Bend Glacier and the amazing lake is by far the most rewarding hike in Central Oregon.

hiking
6 days ago

Lovey trail. The meadows and view of Three Fingered Jack are stunning.

hiking
7 days ago

Nice, easy hike (and that’s coming from someone in not the greatest shape). We went the middle of September, and it was just a delight! Definitely recommend it for an off the regular path kind of hike!

I did this hike in mid August while I was down visiting my brother in Bend. The difference in elevation compared to where I’m from definitely kicked my butt a little, but it was totally worth it! The lake is stunning and heading up to the very top is absolutely worth the extra 20 minute walk up! If I had better balance or it was slightly less windy I would have loved to have walked along the ridge for a while too.

hiking
7 days ago

We took the Pine Marten Lift to the PM Lodge, cut across Sunrise to Summit Trail and scrambled to the top. The spectacular views at the top were worth the hike which was definitely “arduous.” It was very rocky (essentially, the hike was entirely on lava rock), exposed, and occasionally quite steep. Trail was fairly easy to follow in spite of very little signage.

beautiful waterfalls!

Some things to know before going.
The $5 fee deposit box can be found at the trailhead NOT on Forest Rd 12.
When you get to the lower canyon, go left to the unmarked trail that says “unmaintained trail”.

Great time of year to hike because of no mosquitos but we didn’t see three fingered jack because it was unfortunately socked in. Still a gorgeous hike. Signs and descriptions don’t quite add up, however.

Beautiful views, strenuous hike which is worth every step.

hiking
9 days ago

Lovely area. Can't go wrong with any trail around here. I went from Green Lakes Trail, camped at the base of the mountain, and summited the next morning. The walk is pretty straight forward. There is one 20 foot vertical wall at the top. It is recommended to use ropes on this wall. Be careful!

Here is a video showing the summit route:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-eZm0lBVqDc

we loves this hike and constantly said wow for all the views.

The hike to the top is 100% worth it, the lake is beautiful and you can see so far from the peak at the end. It’s amazing

hiking
11 days ago

Hiked this with a friend on Sunday. There was a nice break in the hazy weather and the views were mostly clear the whole day. This was the 4th time I have been up South Sister, and the views and experience never get old. The first few miles through the forest always seem difficult, but I think it's because it is early in the morning and it immediately starts climbing without much of a warm-up. Once you get through the forest, it levels out for beautiful views of Bachelor, Broken Top, South Sister, and Moraine Lake. The last 3 miles are over rocky, loose terrain, so it takes more time to get adequate footing. We had lunch at the false summit down at the glacier. The last mile is slow moving due to scree and loose cinder rock. The views at the top are unlike any other and everyone should experience it. Definitely recommend hiking poles, sunscreen, bug spray, and LOTS of water (I took 4L and had about 1L left over.. but I have run out of water up there in the past). It is a strenuous hike, but doable if you have enough mental grit and perseverance.

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