Broken Top Loop Trail

HARD 17 reviews
#9 of 112 trails in

Broken Top Loop Trail is a 27.2 mile lightly 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.

27.2 miles
4199 feet

dogs on leash





horseback riding

nature trips







wild flowers




6 months ago

This is the most complete backpacking trip you'll find in all of Oregon. Truly something for everyone. Excellent trail conditions as of Aug 12th '17. No name lake is predictably crowded with very limited tent space, but anywhere just below the lake is equally impressive and I would argue more comfortable and peaceful. Designated camping spots at Green Lakes were sparse due to the fact that many are under restoration, but if you get creative you will find excellent spots in the vicinity.
Any camping at Park Meadow is excellent due to the proximity and level of the creek running through the meadow.

Ample water supplies every couple miles. We had one 32 oz bottle and one 3L bladder per person and never ran short or dry.

6 months ago

Just completed this loop today.

Started at Three Creeks Trail. Camped the first night at Golden Lake. No problems whatsoever. No Snow. Approximately 7.7 miles though a burnt forest, meadows and a couple river crossings. Bring sandals for the crossings. This section was all soft sand on the trail. Much like walking on the dry portion of the beach.

Day two was a long difficult one. 10 miles from Golden Lake to the No Name Lake.

Day Three was out from the ice lake to Tam McArthur Rim and back to Three Creeks Lake. When leaving the lake it can be easy to lose the trail. Having said that, it's also very easy to find/follow the trail. Either set your compass bearing and aim for the end of Tam McArthur Rim, or just follow the AllTrails geotrack. Look for all the cairns to help guide you. Just make sure you hit the Tam McArthur Rim Trail at the very end. I walked passed it and had to climb 150 yards almost straight up in loose lava rock to get back on the trail.

There were multiple snow crossings both approaching the mountain and leaving the mountain. All easily passable.

The last few miles down from Tam McArthur to Three Creeks is very steep and harder than I expected.

Thank you to whomever uploaded this track. It was an incredible help.

6 months ago

Did this trail 2 weeks ago. Left from Park meadows trailhead and after you hit park meadows you have to cut your own trail through the snow between south sister and broken top but just keep heading between them and you'll eventually hit a point where you will see green lakes. From green lakes we headed down to the soda spring trailhead and took that up to the broken top trailhead area and continued down. Too much snow between broken top and bald butte so we took a trail down and around that puts you right along some ATV roads. We ended up taking a horseback trail back to three creeks lake and hitchhiked the 2 miles back to park meadows trailhead. Great trip we camped at green lakes and somewhere at the east end of bald butte. Many water crossings that I took my boots off for. Super fun just have some directional awareness in the snow

Monday, January 09, 2017

Monday, August 08, 2016

This was an amazing backpacking trip. Me and my partner started out at three creeks lake and hiked up the tam mcarthur rim trail until we reached a sign saying "unmaintained trail", however the trail was just as good as any maintained trail I've been on. From there we continued towards broken top. When we started gaining elevation closer to the mountain we turned off trail just before the knob named broken hand, this is the small peak right before broke top. We walked in the direction between broken top and ball butte where eventually we found the next trail (not hard to miss). From here we hiked broken top trail (there are no signs saying it is broken top trail but you will know it when you get to it). On broken top trail we continued to follow the signs that say to green lakes which will eventually take you all the way around broken top. Green lakes sits between broken top and the south sister. Up to the point where we reached camp at green lakes we hiked close to 14 miles. The next day we hiked north on the green lakes trail until we reached a split in the trail. At this point we got onto park meadow trail and hiked through the burnt forest to the park meadow tie trail (this trail takes you back to three creek lake just follow the signs saying "to three creek lake"). This section we hiked was close to 12 miles.
P.S. Bring bug spray, sunscreen, and a warm sleeping bag or something warm to sleep in. We only brought hammocks and 2 blankets each and froze all night. Have Fun!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Amazing views with lots of places to find clean water.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

This was my first backpacking experience. We started just north of Three Creek Lake at the Park Meadows trail head. The first 4-5 miles are fairly level as you walk through the remains of a forest fire from 2012. Very surreal. You can get glimpses through the burned out trees of the Three Sisters which you wouldn't get if the trees were alive. 8-9 miles in made it to our first stop for the night, Green Lakes campground. On the way we did a 1 mile side trip to Golden Lake which was very beautiful. Green lakes is pretty too as it sits right below South Sister. Unfortunately the mosquitoes were very aggressive here.
Day two led us south on the western side of the mountain and then we turned east between Broken Top and Mt. Bachelor. After 4-5 miles we had a decision to make; either continue east/south east and loop around Ball Butte or cut north through a gap in the hills towards the mountain and shave off 5-6 miles. We decided on the latter and I'm glad we did. You go up and down several ridges and find yourself in the bowels of the mountain. There are several snow fields to cross. At the top of one ridge you can bear left and go up to see the glacier lake and a nice view from the rim. After that we made our way back down and skirted Broken Hand to the south and east. I guess there is a trail high up on Broken Hand but instead of climbing we went more to the east and around multiple ridges making our own trail. We tried cutting north as much as possible to catch the Tam McCarther trail but were unable to find it before the sun started to set. Made camp in a stand of trees and melted snow for water since there were no creeks in this area at all. Awesome rise and setting of the super moon this weekend. Sunday we started out again looking for the trail and found it only about a quarter mile close. Glad we didn't try to make it down the night before. The decent was about another four miles and parts were very steep. Overall we did roughly 24 miles in 45 hours-start to finish.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Broken Top Mt./Tam McArthur Rim was my first day hike experience and I handled it like a pro. It wasn't too hard or too easy. In fact, after we finished, I wanted to go back up to the top again. There was a bit of snow left on the ground still which we were not expecting and made it a bit of a challenge. The scenery was absolutely breath taking. When we reached the rim, we were able to see the entire cascade range in front of us, the lake down below, and Broken Top, our destination. And I have to say, although it was a bit cold, jumping in to the lake was a perfect way to finish the hike!

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

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Thursday, November 26, 2015