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Matthieu Lakes Trail is a 6.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Sisters, Oregon that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length 6.3 mi Elevation gain 849 ft Route type Loop

Dog friendly

Kid friendly

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Forest

Lake

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Bugs

Description
Waypoints (0)
Tips

Please note: road may close - please research prior to your visit. Nice day hike near Sisters Oregon in the Three Sisters Wilderness Area. The trip up to South Lake has an elevation change about 800 feet over 3/4 a mile. The trail is great for backpacking. If you're out of shape this can be a little tough.

Sunscreen and Bug spray are your friends! Great for newer hikers and younger kids.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (149)
Photos (237)
Recordings (109)
Completed (263)
Misha Marie
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jul 09 2020
RunningBugs

I recommend parking at Lava Camp... I parked at the Observatory and took the PCT (Lava Rock) to the trail crossing. Mosquitoes are out, bug spray is a must! I went past both lakes to the lava rock section running through some snow but passable for sure! So worth the views and the opportunity to continue on the PCT if you want to go longer! Perfect trail for dogs too.... four different watering spots along the way to keep them cool and happy!

View Misha's Recording
sue ostermann-lenz
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jul 08 2020
HikingBugs

Amazing views! Would absolutely do this one again. A bit of a climb on the way up, but not unmanageable for even the moderately out of shape. Glad we had booties on our dog -- rocks got a little sharp at the top. Def bring your bug spray.

Taylor Brentano
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jul 06 2020
BackpackingBugs

July 4-5th 2020: Buggy as all get out. Bug repellent is an absolute must. We camped at site 3 at North Matthieu lake and the mosquitoes flocked to us and our dog. Escaped with few bites though since we were vigilant about repellent application. Bugs were minimal when down by the water. Absolutely gorgeous views to be had, worth the bugs. Snow patches around but not really on the trail itself. Slightly challenging trail at times. Great for a one nighter backpacking trip, mosquitoes aside!

Nicholas Bloxham
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Jul 01 2020
BackpackingBugsGreat!Snow

Backpacked in and stayed at both North and South Matthiue lakes. Some snow on the trail, we experienced a cold front the first two days that kept the temperatures really low and lots of wind. The 3rd day was great, lots of sun and great visibility which made the PCT route back to Lava Lake Trail head amazing. Lots of bugs at N. Matthieu. Great trip for someone new to backpacking, the loop allows for a lot of variety.

Hannah George
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 28 2020
Backpacking

Perfect for a quick backpacking overnighter! We spent one night at the south lake. The trail had some snow but was very manageable. Moderately uphill for a little ways and in between the lakes but nothing too challenging. Would recommend for anyone who wants to test drive the backpacking thing but doesn’t want to go big on their first outing!

Lydia Durnil
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Jun 28 2020
HikingRockySnow

Good trail though we went on a rainy/snowy/hail-y day. But that made it exciting. I've heard there are great views, though we couldn't see much of anything beyond the lakes. Good hike, but would love to go back and see the mountain views! Snow covered parts of the trail, but no way to get lost. Would recommend.

View Lydia's Recording
Chris Wallace
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 27 2020
HikingBugsSnow

This hike was truly amazing! We did the 6 mile loop that takes you to the Matthieu lakes in about 2-1/2 hours with breaks. To start the hike you head through the forest until you meet the pacific crest trail! From there you continue in the scenic trees along the lava flow on the right for about of mile relatively easy and flat. Take the right to North Matthieu lake! Once we arrived we enjoyed a short break at this lake which was very beautiful. After this there’s a bit of incline until you reach south Matthieu lake! Beautiful views of north and middle sister. The hike back from there along a butte gives guy amazing views of all the mtns!! Worth it 100%!! Would do again Make sure to bring bug spray.

View Chris 's Recording
Jennifer Lauren
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 22 2020

Did a one night backpack trip and camped up at South Lake. The snow has definitely melted enough and there are plenty of footprints where there is not an issue following the trail. The mosquitos were almost non existent up at South Lake but they were pretty bad down by North Lake. Although I am sure that will be quick to change as more snow melts. Beautiful overnighter and quite a few off shoot areas to explore in your down time around South Lake!

jamie nicole
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 22 2020
HikingSnow

SO WORTH IT! went backpacking a few days ago and it was so pretty. we lost the trail because of the snow however ended up finding it again. Not impossible to stay on trail- we just messed up a bit. Not very crowded which was nice. LOTS OF MOSQUITOS so bring bug spray. Neither the north or south lakes were very warm but we still jumped in and out (it was cold- but if it was high 80s or 90s, you could swim more comfortably there). Overall completely recommend this. Snow was a bit slippery - bring poles if you want.

Megan Brennock
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 21 2020
HikingBugsSnow

Awesome one night backpacking trip. We got lost on our way to north lake due to the snow covering trail. But after finding our way to north lake the view is amazing! Lots of bugs! The weather was warm enough to want to jump in but wow the water was cold in both north and south lake. Went on a Friday and seemed like we had the whole lake to ourselves. Camped on north lake and even though there was a bit of snow on our campsite wasn’t bad at all. Definitely coming back later in the summer when it’s warmer to swim.

Bri An
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jun 19 2020
Hiking

Went out on Juneteenth with our two kids 10 and 12. We did it counterclockwise fwiw starting out on the west trail toward North Matthieu Lake. This western trail was, at times, very obscured by snow. We felt ok - and by that I mean that my partner was worried - but there happened to be a few hikers in front of us who left prints. Had there not been prints, we would have turned back. Twice, we lost the trail and had to really look. It was pretty buggy to the lakes but beautiful enough for my kids to say “we live in the best state.” Once we got to the south lake, we almost made the WRONG decision to go back and not do the loop (worried about more snow). But we trekked on, and holy moly - that view on the east side of loop - what in the world - we could see from north sister to hood. Beautiful. Stunning. Ridiculous. If we did it again today, we’d do the east side of the loop and skip the west because of the snow. Also less bugs on east side....

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Carina Whapoww
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jun 19 2020
BackpackingSnow

Horray for the opening of HWY 242! Hiked up to North Matthieu Lake yesterday for a quick overnight. About a 1/2 mi from the PCT intersection ran into deep snow and lost trail. Decided to head straight up the hill in a slip and slide scramble. Totally worth it. Absolutely beautiful and quiet! We stayed at site 4. It was the only site clear of snow. If you are seeking some solitude I highly recommend backpacking here in the next couple weeks before the snow melts and it becomes crowded.

Gwen Harris
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Nov 05 2019
Hiking

Gorgeous hike. The panoramic view at the top went from Sisters to Mt. Hood. Beautiful lakes and haunting charred wilderness made the hike fun and mysterious.

Anne Shoemaker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Oct 07 2019
Hiking

Beautiful hike that has haunting burn area, beautiful lakes, incredible mountain views .we walked counter clockwise, which had a couple steep ascents but not too difficult. The walk back from south Matthieu lakes on the pct had stunning views of Mt Washington, Three Finger Jack and Jefferson.

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Brittney Reynolds
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Oct 06 2019
Hiking

So beautiful, especially with a little snow. The burned areas were especially unique. This would be a great spot for backpacking.

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Jen Perez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Oct 06 2019
Hiking

Beautiful day. We hit sun and snow. The views once you get above South Matthieu Lake are unreal.

Kathleen Gebauer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Oct 05 2019
HikingOver grown
Megan Troy
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Sep 23 2019
HikingNo shadeRocky

The first portion of the trail is a old burned forest with little shade. You quickly get to the trees and it is a very shaded and relaxing hike. There is a bit of an elevation gain that gets your heart pumping! Lakes are pristine and cold!

thomas k.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Aug 30 2019
Hiking

Great hike with spectacular views on the way back down along the PCT. Fascinating to see the new burn already starting to sprout new life. The lakes are beautiful.

Elysia Retzlaff
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Aug 28 2019
Hiking

Dogs are not required to be on a leash on this trail. I don't know why Alltrails keeps saying this on trails throughout the Deschutes and Willammette National Forests. There are only 4-5 trails that have leash restrictions and they are towards the South Sister and Green Lakes Trail. There is a sign at the Mathieu Lakes trailhead that states this. Beautiful hike! First mile of trail is severely burned so it can be quite hot on a sunny day. Temperature drops quite a bit as soon as you enter the forested area. Beware the snakes in the lakes - they don't seem to be afraid of humans! If you hike about 5 minutes past the south lake on the Scotts Pass trail there is a little side trail that climbs a big hill that provides awesome views of the North Sister.

Kyle Owen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Aug 25 2019
Hiking

A large portion of the trail is completely burned out from last years fires , but it’s still beautiful in its own way . The lakes are calm and serene . Make sure to do the pct portion of the loop because that has the best panoramic views of north sister, middle sister , Washington , three finger jack, Jefferson and Hood.

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Francine S.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Aug 22 2019
Hiking

The first burned part of the trail was downright depressing. Lakes at the top made up for it though. Overcast and rained for the second half of the hike. Still not many bugs. A well worn, easy to navigate trail.

Mark Rogers
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Aug 19 2019
Hiking

My favorite place in the Oregon Cascades is South Matthieu Lake. A 5 minute walk up the hill on the north side of the lake reveals 7+ volcanoes...including Mt Hood on a clear day

Olivia Nicole
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Aug 17 2019
Hiking

beautiful views from the Southern lake! I took the Mattheiu Lakes Trail heading in and then the PCT trail back to the trailhead and the recent burn does leave parts of the trail fairly exposed. I highly recommend doing part of this trip on the PCT trail as I saw North Sister, Middle Sister, the peak of South Sister, Mt Washington, 3 Fingered Jack, Mt Jefferson, and Mt Hood from one of the vantage points. This is a really pretty trail with a lot of diversity.

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