Broken Top Loop Trail is a 25.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Sisters, Oregon that features a lake and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 25.8 miles Elevation Gain: 4,189 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

bird watching

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

scramble

snow

backpacking
blowdown
icy
muddy
off trail
7 months ago

Did this loop in 1 night, and was a pretty easy hike. We started at Tam McArthur Rim hiking clockwise, and camped at Golden Lake. Short easy hike out the next day. I will say the distance provide here is off quite a bit.

hiking
snow
8 months ago

Started from the todd lake trail head because we wanted to get over No Name lake before the bad weather hit and go counterclockwise(adds about 7.5 miles total) The weather up top was pretty bad with wind and snow making the unmaintained trail a little difficult to find. There was cold wind and rain the entire way until camp at three creek lake so it was a rough night. Originally were going to camp at green lakes the second night but were so wet we just finished the loop instead. Most of the trail is exposed, but it was beautiful even through the burnout. Would highly recommend.

hiking
off trail
rocky
scramble
9 months ago

Awesome hike. Very long and rough for newer backpackers on a two day trip but we made it. Beautiful views. There were a few spots that were difficult to traverse but all was manageable. All in all a great hike!

hiking
off trail
rocky
9 months ago

Great trail, connected Tam MacArthur to Broken Top. Trail in good condition well passed the sign that says "end of maintained trail." After trail dead ends at a large outcropping of rock, skirt the left side and follow the ridge. Herd trail continues intermittently between rock scrambles. We connected with the Broken Top trail and went part way back across the glaciers and flat areas.

backpacking
bugs
no shade
off trail
rocky
scramble
snow
9 months ago

Walked this loop with two nights on the trail 8/6-8/8. Started on the Tam McArthur rim trail. It is worth studying a map thoroughly and having a GPS to follow the unmaintained section after the end through No Name Lake. There is a little scrabbling around Broken Hand that is mostly easy but takes a while. We waited until the first morning for this part since we got a late start and I am glad we did. Beautiful views from the start until after Green Lakes. A lot of exposed trail through this loop so bring a lot of sunscreen. The second night we stayed at Golden Lake, which had great views but had a ton of mosquitoes. After Golden Lake, most of the trail is through a burned forest which was tedious and hot in the sun. If you have the option, I would recommend skipping the entire Park Meadow trail and arranging a shuttle route or looping some other way (which I haven't researched it). I am giving the route only 4 stars because this section is around a third of the distance and it is not very pleasant.

hiking
bugs
no shade
10 months ago

Completed this loop 7/29-730 in around 22 hours total. Went CCW from Three Creeks Lake and camped first night at Golden Lake. Both Golden Lake and Park Meadows have a high amount of mosquitos at this point in the season. There also appeared to be mosquitos at Green Lakes. The bugs were really the only downside to this loop. Amazing views of the area and well graded trails with all the climbs being pretty gradual. The off trail section between No Name Lake and Tam Macarthur Rim trail is straightforward but there isn't much shade up there so plan accordingly. Also recommend going CCW on this trail.

hiking
bugs
10 months ago

Completed this today (Thursday), went in on Tuesday. We decided to go counterclockwise to get the big climb out of the way on day. I’m glad we did, not sure if I would have been motivated to make the climb on the last day. There is some snow across the trail near Broken Hand, but the trail is easy to follow. Stunning views all along the trail. We camped at Golden Lake our last night, which is great place to stop and enjoy the view of being between Broken Top and South Sister. The mosquitoes didn’t appreciate us. The feeling was mutual. The trail from Golden Lake to the finish was long and my least favorite portion of the trail. Overall great hike.

hiking
bugs
off trail
snow
11 months ago

hiked this on 06/24/2019 CCW, so starting with the rim. The first part was pretty okay there was a lot of snow and we lost the trail basically all the time. As we got closer to Broken Hand the trail became sketchier and actually dangerous, we had to walk on ridges and slide down on sketchy places near no-name lake. where we originally planned on camping but it was all still frozen and covered in snow. so we had to walk on until green lakes, there was still no trail only snow. Thanks to Maps.me we kept close to the trail. Green lakes was also still frozen but we found a dry place just before sunset. We walked for 11 hours and were quite wet, from falling and sliding. We were told at the camp that the next part was going to be bad as well so we decided the next day to walk the green lakes trail, and drive back to our car. Not completely finishing this trail also because of the storm that was coming up. looking back I felt not save at all but the views were incredible!! I'd recommend waiting to do this trail for a while since the snow makes it quite impossible.

backpacking
closed
off trail
rocky
snow
11 months ago

We left Seattle at 7 am, drove through Yakima stopping at Taco Bell and a General store on the way. Arrived in the town of Sisters 2:00, but didn’t start hiking until 2:45 from the green lakes trailhead. At the car we saw two people getting in their car, but nobody else after that. The first 3-4 miles of the trail were through burned out fires, from the 2017 Milli Fire, with dramatic white trees, blue sky, view of the Sisters after first couple miles. First 2 miles up to ridge, then down for about 4 miles. We crossed two streams with no shoes and our toes nearly lost feeling and the mosquitos were horrendous down in wetlands after getting through burned forest. After 2nd stream, we came to a meadow with a view of the beautiful Broken Top Mountain. We began to ascend and lost our way through more and more snow and unmarked trails, forcing us to use our GPS on “All Trails” app to blaze our own trail. Got to the fork in the trail, which was about 7.5 miles in and decided to camp at 7:20 PM. We decided to make a fire, because we were surrounded by snow and temperatures were dropping, even though it seemed really dry. We built up a pyramid of dry branches, and started an amazing fire with one match. It blazed bigger than we expected, and high winds kept fueling it. We let it die down to almost coals, then it was just about perfect. We made dinner, had some whiskey and wine, and went to bed at 9:30pm. Both of us were farting uncontrollably from the midday Taco Bell visit the day before, which was likely a mistake, but kept us laughing the whole time, and verified that we still had our sense of smell. Winds picked up in the night waking us up. At 1am, 3am, and again at 5am. We were surely the only humans on this mountain top! The wind was the only thing we could hear, with the exception of a couple birds and one owl, we heard no wildlife at all. Robin woke up at 6 AM, to snow falling on the tent, while I was fully engrossed in my sleeping bag until 8am. Then got the bear bag, both of us pooped out the Taco Bell, made a fire, and packed up camp and departed by 10:15. Following our tracks back down through the snow was easy, even though we weren’t exactly on the trail, and it was cool to see everything from a different direction; however, clouds were hovering over the tops of the sisters and Broken Top. Got back to the car by 3:30pm and finally saw the lake and the first people in over 24 hours, in the parking lot. (The horse tracks, fresh ones, on the way down. However we never did see the party.)

hiking
snow
11 months ago

backpacking
Wed May 01 2019

I backpacked this loop over the course of three days in August 2018. It was a little smoky from the fires, but was still a great trip. You get some really nice views of the Three Sisters and the the volcanic features are really cool. We went CCW and camped at Golden Lake and Crater Creek. Here is a full trip report I wrote with all my pictures of the trail: https://backpackers-review.com/trip-reports/three-sisters-broken-top-loop/

backpacking
Sat Dec 01 2018

Counterclockwise is definitely the way to go. I'd much rather start the trip with the burned forest section and end on a beautiful note than vice versa. If you go clockwise you also have to start with an immediate straight up hill. Gorgeous trip though either way.

backpacking
Mon Oct 29 2018

I've hiked this trail twice so far. Both times I went clockwise and not the ccw most recommend. I prefer getting the elevation done the first day, camp around green lakes then hike the rest in the morning.

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