East Fork to Glacier Lake to West Fork Loop

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Wallowa Lake State Park

East Fork to Glacier Lake to West Fork Loop is a 31.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Joseph, Oregon that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until September. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Length31.4 miElevation gain7,047 ftRoute typeLoop
BackpackingCampingFishingHikingHorseback ridingRunningDog friendlyForestLakeRiverViewsWaterfallWildflowersWildlifeBridge outBugsMuddyRockyScramble
Waypoints (10)
1
Trail head
45.26707, -117.21252
2
Campsite Day 1: Aneroid Lake
Stunning views, good access to water source.
45.20747, -117.20104
3
Pass 1
45.18953, -117.20545
4
Pass 2 - Polaris Pass
45.17301, -117.22442
5
Campsite Day 2: Frazier Lake
Nice views. Poor water source, as lake is too shallow.
45.1553, -117.25561
6
Glacier Lake
45.16378, -117.28406
7
Pass 3 - Glacier Pass
45.16758, -117.28512
8
Mocassin Lake
Great campsite. Great lake to swim in.
45.18068, -117.30012
9
Lep Lake
Nice campsite. Great lake to swim in. Has a 20ft ledge to dive from.
45.19716, -117.2804
10
Campsite 3: Horseshoe Lake
Spacious site with access to private island and stellar lookout points of the lake.
45.20039, -117.27162
Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (29)
Photos (83)
Activities (25)
Completed (38)
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Keith Williams
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Linda Oram
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Linda Oram
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Linda Oram
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Betsy Frazier
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Mark Ashley
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Backpacking

This is an amazing trail, and we loved this backpacking trip. We took six days to do this trail in late August. We camped at Aneroid Lake, Frazier Lake, Upper Lake, Six Mile Meadow and at the bottom of the trail to Ice Lake. We decided to take some side trips along the way, and he trail to Eagle Cap was incredible. This was probably my favorite day of the entire trip, the views are amazing the whole way up to the summit and the view from the top if breathtaking. We also hiked to the top of Matterhorn, but that wasn't as nice. The trail is supper steep and sketchy. The view from the top isn't as nice as Eagle Cap either. We did see some mountain goats while we were on the trail though, so that was nice. We hiked the loop in a clockwise direction, which is certainly the way to go. As others have mentioned, Polaris Pass is a bit of a beast, but the descent isn't bad if you take your time and we were certainly glad to have trekking poles. Moccasin Lake was a bit crowded for our taste, so we camped at Upper lake and had the lake to ourselves, the view from the campsite was also gorgeous. The campsite at the bottom of the Ice Lake trail was our least favorite, it smelled of horse poo and wasn't very private. With the added mileage, my Garmin said we hiked 62 miles during our trip and the elevation gain was crazy. It was a great trip, but my legs were certainly tired at the end.

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Andrew Scaparra
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Andrew Scaparra
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Christopher Tento
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Mark Ashley
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BackpackingGreat!Rocky

This is an amazing trail, and we loved this backpacking trip. We took six days to do this trail in late August. We camped at Aneroid Lake, Frazier Lake, Upper Lake, Six Mile Meadow and at the bottom of the trail to Ice Lake. We decided to take some side trips along the way, and he trail to Eagle Cap was incredible. This was probably my favorite day of the entire trip, the views are amazing the whole way up to the summit and the view from the top if breathtaking. We also hiked to the top of Matterhorn, but that wasn't as nice. The trail is supper steep and sketchy. The view from the top isn't as nice as Eagle Cap either. We did see some mountain goats while we were on the trail though, so that was nice. We hiked the loop in a clockwise direction, which is certainly the way to go. As others have mentioned, Polaris Pass is a bit of a beast, but the descent isn't bad if you take your time and we were certainly glad to have trekking poles. Moccasin Lake was a bit crowded for our taste, so we camped at Upper lake and had the lake to ourselves, the view from the campsite was also gorgeous. The campsite at the bottom of the Ice Lake trail was our least favorite, it smelled of horse poo and wasn't very private. With the added mileage, my Garmin said we hiked 62 miles during our trip and the elevation gain was crazy. It was a great trip, but my legs were certainly tired at the end.

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Jessica Matthews
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BackpackingOver grownRocky

Hi there! Backpacking novice here! This was more difficult than expected but the views were well worth it! Polaris pass is pretty tricky coming down on the west side. But generally safe if you take it slow and watch your footing on the shale and rocks for the first 10 or so switchbacks. After that it’s switchbacks down and down and down. Overall it’s a beast of a pass... at least for me! The trail up to Frazier lake is awful basically climbing on boulders but it’s only about a half a mile. It’s pretty difficult at the end the second leg. We ended up cutting out the second half of the loop and taking the trail down through the valley to get back after a zero day at Frazier lake. We missed out the lakes beyond glacier pass but plan to come back and do the other half of the loop. One last word of caution. Many of the all trails mile estimates were pretty off. We usually ended up doing a 2 or 3 miles more on each leg than the app said. Which doesn’t sound like much but when everything hurts and you’ve been hiking for 8 hours... another mile makes a big difference. So we found this frustrating. Overall it was an amazing experience in aa in believably beautiful area and we can’t wait to go back.

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Abi Squires
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Backpacking

Amazing trail! It was my first time backpacking, and If I can do it, anyone can! First night we hiked up to aneroid lake and camped there. Great Lake & great camp spot. Second day we hiked from aneroid lake to glacier. This was the hardest day but worth it for the views at glacier lake! Polaris pass kicked my ass, and I’m glad we did this clockwise. Hiking poles and confidence recommended. The last day we hiked from glacier to horseshoe lake. We stopped at moccasin lake to cool off. This is a hard hike, but it’s so worth it!

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Matt Edler
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Wonderful experience. Went clockwise, would’ve been quite daunting to come over Polaris Pass the other way. Day two (from Android to Frazier) is quite hard, but doable with a bit of grit- but expect to be sore unless you’re very experienced- this trail is not for beginners. Mosquitoes were moderately annoying, but horseflies proved to be the greater pests. A massive thunderstorm made the trip even more exciting. 6 mile meadow was a bit crowded on a Tuesday night, lots of traffic coming up that way. Swimming in Moccasin and Horseshoe lakes was amazing.

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Jeff Reininger
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Hiking

Great time of year to hit this trail. Very little in the way of bugs. Pretty busy with human folk though. Was hard to find a campsite at glacier lake. The hike up Polaris Pass is not as bad as it looks, vey mild switchbacks. Unbelievable scenery.

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Linda Oram
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Diana Pira
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Eric Couser
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Hiking
First to Review

Note: The map on All Trails does not show where glacier pass meets West Fork Wallowa... the junction is past Frazier Lake, not before. Amazing trail, added Ice Lake to it and did the full lakes basin loop. This added about 12 miles.

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Thomas Bacewich
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HikingIcyNo shadeRocky
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Jonathan Zapp
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BackpackingGreat!

This is an amazing loop. We did it in 4 days, three nights. It had great mountain vista views, alpine lakes, wild flowers, and good camp sites. The trails were all in good shape as well, no issues at all. I guess you could do this in either direction, clockwise or counterclockwise. I just love the Wallows area, and the weather tends to be much better on the east side of Oregon so that means more hiking days in the summer!

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Tristan Puga
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Rick Krull
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Rick Krull
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Rick Krull
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Nur Abbas
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Chris Mccoy
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Abe Miller
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