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Pacific Crest Trail and Alternate Loop is a 31 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Crater Lake, Oregon that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and backpacking.

Length 31.0 mi Elevation gain 3,976 ft Route type Loop

Backpacking

Hiking

Forest

Lake

Views

Wildlife

No dogs

Description
Waypoints (0)

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (18)
Photos (30)
Recordings (13)
Completed (19)
Erin Purinton
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Backpacking

When I went to get a backpacking permit, the Steel ranger office was ALSO closed for a search and rescue. Luckily within the hour someone showed up to get me on my way. I did a quick over night trip from the Rim Village to Grouse Hill camp and back. It was pretty much just the Rim trail + Discovery trail and I added in the Watchmen Peak. After reading Leon's and Dave's reviews from 3 weeks before, I decided to skip the back half of the loop/non-rim side. There is a water cache about .4 of a mile from the camp at Grouse Hill towards the road. There was only 1 other group at the camp. There was a lot of space to camp. The ranger actually came by and checked our permits. Both out and back, there was awesome views of the lake and the Wizard Island. I went out on Friday 7/31, I started pretty early. I got 1st pick of the parking lot. I only saw 3 people until I got up to watchmens peak and it was super crowded. After that, no one for the last 5 or so miles. Saturday, on the way back to Rim Village from Grouse hill, no one again until Watchmens peak. It was pretty crowded again. After that, it was moderately trafficked all the way back to Rim Village.

Dave C.
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Did this hike over 4th of July weekend and didn't run into a soul until I got back to the rim of the lake. The non-Rim trail sections aren't much to see, mostly a dead forest. Also very little water on the NW/North part of this loop (permit office warned me). There is a water cache in the parking lot where the PCT crosses the road. Lot of snow and ice on the rim trail, it's passable and not dangerous. Only section I felt a little nervous on was the Watchman Tower piece, which is closed but passable -- there is basically a 100 yards where you're on a steep incline walking through snow/ice. Otherwise a lovely hike, views of the lake, while more limited that I would have liked, are spectacular. Do the Garfield Peak hike before or after this, it has the best views of the lake.

Leon Dekelbaum
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HikingBugsNo shadeSnow

Did the full loop. On the way up where where the PCT goes, about 80% of the trail is burn, so it's completely exposed with dead trees. Also, many, many trees on the pct for about 6 miles to jump over and navigate around. I'd wait a few years until things grow back. I camped 1 mile north of Grouse Lake because they try to hold that camp for PCTers and that's the nearest dispersed camp zone. First night at Bybee Creek where someone dumped a whole pot of pasta. Red Cone and Dutton Creek sites are closed because of downed trees. Also the permit offices was closed the day I went out from 10-2:30 because of a search and rescue. On my way back it was also closed for a search and rescue. It seems like a common thing. The Rim Trail still has a lot of snow fields. Not dangerous, but onerous to navigate.

Stone Conroy
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Hiking

Fall of 2019–more snow than I expected!

Michelle Hurtley
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Hiking

Awesome.

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Sarah LaRue
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Backpacking
First to Review

I hiked this trail last September (2018). Loved it! Started at Grouse hill and hiked along the rim to Lightning Springs to camp with a stop at Watchman Tower. Hiked from Lightning Springs back to the Rim to Rim Village, then took Dutton Creek to the PCT and hiked back up to Grouse Hill. Saw elk and deer. Saw bear and cougar tracks, but didn’t see any actual bears nor cougars. Total of 40 miles after all the side trails and wanderings I did.

Taylor Bell
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Krista Wise
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Hiking
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Philip A.
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Hiking
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Paula Cox
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Hiking
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Rich T.
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Hiking
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Kraig Adams
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Hiking
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Aca Yu
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Hiking
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Michael Sugas
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Hiking
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Michael Sugas
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Hiking
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Michael Sugas
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Hiking
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Veronica Belmont
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Hiking
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Alex Schammel
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