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Scout Lake Via Pacific Crest Trail is a 11.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Idanha, Oregon that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and walking and is best used from July until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 11.2 mi Elevation gain 2,598 ft Route type Out & Back

Dogs on leash

Hiking

Walking

Forest

Lake

River

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Description
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Getting There

Love this hike. You wil then begin hiking south experiencing breathtaking views till you reach the peak at Park view. You will watch Mt Jefferson get closer and closer. then if you look over Park Butte you can see all of Jefferson Park and all its small lakes.

There is lots of camping and parking here.

mossgeek@yahoo.com

Drive in from HWY 46. right at the border of Mt Hood and Detroit Ranger District at the powerlines there is a road 4220. take that a few miles up till you get to Breitenbush Lake. One can also get there from the north (i.e. Portland) via Oregon Highway 224 to Estacada and continuing on US Forest Service Road 46 (paved) to 4220 (gravel, very bad condition).

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Reviews (55)
Photos (111)
Recordings (41)
Completed (115)
Sierra Nelson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Jul 05 2020
HikingBugsIcyRockySnow

This was by far the most challenging & rewarding hike I’ve done, yet. The views are breathtaking! It’s peaceful and you don’t run into very many hikers. It is still extremely snowy and I managed to get off course a few times through the snowy patches, so I’d suggest a GPS or download an All Trails map. The mosquitos were terrible, so bring bug spray. The road in (4220) is definitely difficult, but I managed it with my Acura RDX. Just drive slowly and carefully. I wouldn’t recommend a car attempting the road.

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Shelby Byerly
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu May 21 2020
Hiking

Took my dog and cat on this last summer. Crowded, but the views are totally worth it. I recommend starting early on a weekday, most of this trail isn’t necessarily crowded but Jefferson park will be. Came from the Detroit side and the road becomes a nightmare before the trailhead, I would definitely not recommend taking a sedan on it.

Abriana C.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSat Oct 26 2019
HikingSnow
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Ken Watson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Sep 13 2019
HikingRocky

This is certainly not the simplest or easiest way into Jefferson Park but it might be the most rewarding. With views of Jefferson much of the way up to the ridge, you also get views north where you can see Olallie Butte, Hood, and on a clear day St Helens and even Rainier. But coming over the ridge and seeing the park right below Jefferson is absolutely breathtaking. Worth the trek, even for a day hike.

Randi Staudinger
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Sep 01 2019
Hiking

this hike is stunning! the road in is rough! let air out of your tires, only attempt with a high clearance vehicle. the hike isn't that difficult and the views are incredibly rewarding. there is snow in a lot of the areas but it is packed down well.

Amber Schofield
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jul 24 2019
Hiking

Epic hike. Beautiful trails. Even better views. You had to work for it but it was worth it.

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Leigh M.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri Jul 19 2019

7/19/19. Hikes to Scout Lake from the Breitenbush Lake TH. Several large snow fields to cross heading up to the ridge. Soft snow and easy to traverse - but I did slip and slide down a small one. Jefferson Park is spectacular. Not as many wildflowers as I’d hoped but still some lupine, Indian Paintbrush, and beargrass starting. Mosquitoes were viscous in the evening (5-8pm) but once the temp dropped I was able to sit out by the lake. Road 4220 from 42 to Breitenbush Lk is ROUGH but definitely doable with the right car and going slow. I have a Subaru Forester.

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Jordan Hilbert
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Sep 04 2018
Hiking

Ive never been on the PCT but was surprised how many people I came across. I only did about 3.5 miles out instead of the 5.5 but I ran into at least 30 people (all backpackers). Beautiful views and the trail is easy to follow. The road is ROUGH. The rocks don’t look bad as you approach them but you definitely get knocked around. Do not attempt in a sedan... at all. I have a Jeep and that was perfect.

Crash Radius
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Oct 29 2017
Hiking

As previously mentioned, FR 4220 is pretty treacherous even in a jeep, but completely doable. We hiked this trail late October and of it weren't for some previous hikers footprints and the rock stacks, we would have lost the trail entirely in the snow fields. In some areas we would sink up to our hips in the deep snow. Fun! It's mostly an uphill hike to reach Park Butte, with some flat areas near the base of your final climb, but totally worth it. Make sure you use the apps trail route to keep yourself on course because it's easy to get lost in the snow and in the burn areas.

Thomas S.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Oct 03 2017
Hiking

I would absolutely not begin this via the ollallie lake trailhead on the PCT via FR 4220 as mentioned below. This road isn't even good for your car even if you have high clearance. The entry into Jefferson Park via that route is, however, quite epic, but you can also risk getting lost in the snow fields if you go to early in the season. So if that happens, hit up Pyramid Butte, because you'll never ever want to be on FR 4220 again so you may as well do it. At the top of the ridge (Park Butte) you'll have an epic view of a good portion of the state of Oregon. Ollallie Butte, Mt Hood and Mt Adams to the north and a spectacular view of Jefferson to the south as well as the valley that carves southwest from Park Ridge. The descent is also epic, and the enjoying the crystal clear lakes is also an experience.

Zak Olechnowicz
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarThu Jun 22 2017
OHV/Off Road Driving

DO NOT GO TO THIS TRAILHEAD IF YOU HAVE A SEDAN. My Nissan Altima was able to handle the road for about 20 minutes (with 2 miles still left to go) and the road was terribly rock, so much so that I had more than several "Oh shit that sounds expensive moments" which caused temporary heartbreak. If you have a truck or jeep than this drive should be fine. I eventually pulled over at a nice camping spot with a rough tepee and a fire pit already built.

Brad Ruef
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Aug 10 2016

That access road is the worst in Oregon. Sketchy.

Dan Algeo
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Sep 12 2015
Hiking

great Hike, the tail is fairly easy to follow. the road up there is just horrible, just like everyone here(or any othere site ) says...it is that bad. you can make it with no problems, but have a vehicle with clearance.

Steven White
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Aug 24 2015
Hiking

Hiked in on the PCT from Breitenbush Lake. FR 4220 is a difficult road. You can get in with a regular car but it takes quite a bit of time and you aren't going to be moving very quickly. I'm sure if you have a high clearance vehicle it's a different story. The hike itself is great. I took the quick side trip up Pyramid Butte. The view from Park Ridge overlooking Jefferson Park from the north is a spectacular way to enter the area. Even though we went during the week, most of the designated sites were full. The ranger told me they are going to start permitting camping next year in the area. I also visited the springs on the Breitenbush trail which is 2 miles west of Jefferson Park.

Wendy Spencer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Aug 24 2015
Camping

Lots of people there, Yellowjackets pestered a lot, smoky air that finally cleared on our last day. Lakes are low but very clear, no sign of algae. Scenic trail up from Whitewater Creek TH but a steady climb that's challenging with a full pack. No huckleberries or flowers now as everything is dry, but good swimming in the lakes and birds to entertain you.

Tom Aubin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jul 15 2013
Hiking

We went in July 2013. Long and arduous 30% inclines but once you get to the " park" and the little lakes and puddles are full of wildflowers such as avalanche lilies, Bear grass blooming, and many others. I went in a shallow lake and the water was warm. You also get to hike a piece of the PCT.

Andrew Cohen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Dec 09 2012
Hiking

Jeff Park is a wonderland of beauty! There are so many tails and places to camp that a day hike can easily turn into a 3-4 day backpacking trip, not to mention summiting the mountain!

Dennis Phelan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Nov 08 2012
Hiking

I love Jefferson Park meadow and have taken hike there from the North (PCT from Ollalie Lake) and from the South (White Water Creek to the PCT) It is possible to make this a day hike by using the White Water Creek, but I wouldn't want to try it from the North. In both cases we spent the night at one of the lakes in Jefferson Park. In both cases you need to climb. The climb from the North is more abrubt as you climb up the 7200 ft high ridge and then down into Jefferson Park. The climb from the South is more gradual, but a lot longer. Personally I enjoyed the hike from the North more than the one from the South as it was more scenic. The White Water trail is almost all in the trees with few views until near the top. However we made the hike into a two night 33 mile hike from White Water trail head to Jack Lake trail head. The views were really great; however once you hit the burn area what you are looking at isn't the best.

Heather Hall
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Sep 11 2012
Hiking

This hike is by far my favorite!!!

Jenn .
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Aug 14 2011
Hiking

OKEE, so this trail is LOOOONG! You can certainly do a full day hike to the first lake by starting on the Whitewater Trail and encounter Scout Lake and then head back. That is approximately 10 miles round trip if you start at the Whitewater Trail. I started at Cheat Creek Trail (first trail head you come to from the main road). The incline was steady and then levels off about 1/2 mile before you hit the meadow. I hit the meadow and couldn't find the trail to get on the Pacific Crest Trail to get to Scout Lake. Headed back down and drove to the Whitewater Trail head. You will need a Wilderness Pass to park in this area. It cost $5 for a daily pass or get an annual pass for, I think, $35. Pick it up at Detroit Ranger station before getting to the turnoff for this road! I made it to the first ridge and that's where I got the picture of the valley and Mt. Jefferson. I encountered quite a few backpackers and no hikers. This is backpack heaven! I will do the full day hike next weekend to Scout Lake and eventually backpack/camp this area to discover all the other lakes on the trail.

Sophie Bibbey
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jul 06 2020
Hiking
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Andrew Kuenzi
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri Jun 26 2020
Hiking
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james haman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Nov 09 2019
Hiking
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Chris Ho
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Oct 11 2019
Hiking
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Michelle Lin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Oct 07 2019
Hiking
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Kate McDonald-Buckner
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMon Sep 02 2019
Hiking
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Holly C
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Aug 31 2019
Hiking
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