Fuji Mountain from Waldo Road

MODERATE 1 reviews
#3 of 4 trails in

Fuji Mountain from Waldo Road is a 12.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Oakridge, Oregon that features a great forest setting and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and trail running and is best used from May until October.

DISTANCE
12.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,372 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

hiking

trail running

forest

views

hiking
1 month ago

I hiked this trail on a mid-November day, before the first big storms arrived. There were only a few short patches of ice in shaded spots on the trail.

A few observations:
=> Access is very easy, taking OR 58 to the Waldo Lake road. The parking area (wide shoulders on the east side of the road) is just about 2 miles from the turn-off from OR58. Note: there are 'facilities' on the side of the road before you get to the trailhead.
=> Instead of parking off Waldo Lake road, you can start at Gold Lake (if that road is not closed as it was on the day I went).
=> You can also reach the summit of Fuji Mountain from the upper trailhead, at the end of NFR 5883. This would be a much shorter hike (3 miles round-trip -- trail documented on the Alltrails site) but a very different experience.
=> The lakes on the way up can be very pleasant a bit earlier in the season... but after the mosquitoes are gone.
==> I only met another party on the trail between Waldo road and the upper trailhead; the last section (to the summit) is clearly more frequented.
==> There are no views until the last mile before the summit. The interest before that is in the forest setting, the lakes, and just being 'out there'

The trail.
=> The trail is very well maintained and overall well cut and graded. A few exceptions for the half mile on either side of the intersection with South Waldo Lake trail where the Fuji Mth trail goes straight up a few times. Nevertheless, the trail is overall a very good on and easy to navigate.
=> The out-and-back distance is just about 12 miles (a bit more if you park at Gold Lake).
=> The last 1.25 miles to the summit is actually easier than the 1.5 miles that precedes it. The grade is relatively gentle and 6 to 8 (depending how you count) switchbacks help negotiate the summit pyramid.
=> The views are mostly to the west, north and east. There are some partially obstructed views to Diamond Peak to the south.
=> The summit offers a good platform (where the lookout once stood) and side trail to a lower overlook, that can accommodate a few hiking parties
I gave 5 stars mostly because of the classice "Cascades Range" sweeping views from the top... but the forest and lakes are nothing to thumb one's nose at.