Explore the most popular forest trails near Estacada with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The road was closed 10 miles away from the start of the trail 8/18/18

hiking
8 days ago

So the directions take you to Riverside Camp ground which is fine and we started there, but there is a sign just before it’s a small wood sign on a tree and there is a parking lot so if your directions say 1 mile left start looking for the sign. Was a great hike for newbies definitely going back and did not see a waterfall

backpacking
13 days ago

Great hike, great views

The falls are amazing! Very quiet trail...even on the weekend.

Saw a bunch of small snakes too

hiking
20 days ago

I did the the elk creek hike about a month ago. the trail to Welcome Lakes trail is pretty good. Some trees down but most have been cut. That being said this trail does not receive the normal maintenance that other trails get so expect to crawl over a few trees.

The hike itself was nice and the lake was beautiful.

Unfortunately I have to dock two stars for the awful road getting there. There were potholes the size of sofas for several miles. Maybe about 45 minutes of driving total. The road was also very narrow, and bushes were creeping in from the sides. We scratched up our rental car pretty good, so now we have to wax it before we return it.

Also, and this is no fault of the trail, some terrible camper lit a fire the day before we hiked this trail. They didn't do a good job of containing it and it spread in about 15-20 feet in all directions. They're lucky it didn't start a wildfire in the whole region. My wife and I were both disappointed. Both because of the recklessness, and because we had to hightail it out of there to report it (it was still hot and there's no cell service there).

Trail is trashed and unmarked. Shotgun shells, beer cans, and rubber gloves :(

I’d be scared to walk down the trail without hunter orange gear on so people knew where I was.

Good legs workout to the tower, from pansy lake. A dozen or so trees across the trail. Bugs. Gorgeous view at the top.

trail running
1 month ago

Stopped in for travel break on way to Mt Hood. Good 5.5 mile loop for a quick trail run.

trail running
1 month ago

The Alltrails map has some incorrections. First of all, if you stick to the trails that hug the lake, that includes the PCT part, you’ll be doing about 13 miles. Be prepared to go through some campsites, bicycles, and horses on the southern side of the lake. Since I’m a trail runner, I got a lot of strange looks.
Now here’s where it gets tricky. If you are using the red outlined map Alltrails provides, the “old trail 539” has been accommodated for off-road bicycles and isn’t marked as the “old trail” when you’re at the junction. Plus, it added 5 miles to my run, which brought the total to more like 18 instead of the 15 miles that Alltrails has it at. Fortunately, I didn’t see any bicyclists on the old trail, but that may be different on the weekends. It looked like a place for competitive off-road bicycling. It might be smart to check if there’s an event before you take the hike.
A nicer hike would be to start at the Little Crater Lake trailhead, take the “bike” old trail and circle back to the trailhead using the PCT side of the lake. This way you avoid all the campers and day users. Again, make sure there’s no bicycling event.

Started at 8am on a Saturday and only passed 3 groups of hikers. Falls were very impressive. It really is like Multnomah Falls without the crowds. Good elevation changes. Not too steep. Lots of overgrown bushes so wear something to protect your legs. Saw newts, snakes and elk along the trail. There is some traffic noise along the trail, but don't let that deter you. The sights along the trail far outweigh the traffic noise.

backpacking
1 month ago

I just went for a solo backpacking trip on the west side of the loop. I made it as far as Music Creek. This trail seems moderately trafficked for the first six or seven miles. After that it’s full-on bushwhacking. Many good camping spots along the river are to be found. Saw sign of coyote, deer, bear, cougar, and wolves. The rangers warned of mosquitoes, but they didn’t bother me at all. Ticks were a real problem, though.

I was not expecting to do the NF-715 trail. My intent was to do Pup Creek Falls but couldn't find the trail head. My Texas Heeler, Geena and I trekked this one. We made it to mile marker 3. The ups are no joke. With a narrow trail in some spots and rolling rocks, I thought for her first official hike, while carrying her backpack she did really well.

hiking
1 month ago

This is a nice hike that isn't too strenuous.

:Disclaimer: (My review is for the whole mountain.)
When I was young my family camped near the river in RVs. the road we camped on is now part of the washout and shooting range. But my grandfather took me on long hikes up the mountain roads and trails that run throughout this mountains ridges. I learned to drive, fish, camp, track and hunt on this hill. Now in my 40s I take my own children and wife up here frequently. Often we car camp in one of hundreds of great turn offs and once logged ridges. While I havent hiked to the top of fish creek trail since before the washout in 96, anyone (without small children) who loves to get into the thick and really feel remote should explore this area. Ive found treasures I guard jealously and will never share on this gorgeous hill and so may you. beware of large cats and coyotes. Local tv news tonight says wolves are back.

I was on the hill 2 weeks ago and have been at least 5 times since april. ill be back again in a few days. :)

I love this trail. The first time I did it, I planned to run from Fish Creek to Indian Henry. I quickly realized some parts are a bit dangerous for running (steep, narrow tread, and loose material). I just ran as much as I could, and I made it to the end before dark. This trail was clean and well maintained. Pretty accessible as it's close to town.

hiking
2 months ago

I visited this trail with my family on a rainy June day. It was absolutely beautiful. We saw many newts and even a frog. We stopped at a few points to get close to the Clackamas River. We skipped some rocks and stuck our feet in the cold water. I was grateful to see no trash, and I think we may have been the only people on the trail this day. We did the whole out and back.

on Whetstone Trail

2 months ago

Gravel roads, some snow but route finding easy. Great views but got some bug bites as there were some ponds...

hiking
2 months ago

It’s a wonderful light elevation hike. You still get a decent workout because of the ups and downs. Gorgeous views.

Minus one star for trash on the trail where it gets close to the road.

This was a nice trail (for the most part), but you never really get away from the highway enough to stop hearing the cars go by, really drowned out the river noise. There’s a large section where you’re hiking directly under some very large power lines and unfortunately takes away from the trail quiet a bit. The waterfall was amazing but this trail wouldn’t be on the top of my list of recommendations for anyone wanting to see waterfalls.

backpacking
2 months ago

This hike is about 13-15 miles around the lake, no significant elevation worth noting and very easy terrain! We hiked around the lake from Little Crater Lake and set up camp at Meditation Point. It was really beautiful and a nice view of the lake! Next time we will definitely take a fishing pole. The next morning we hiked the rest of the way around the lake. Note: Park rangers do come by tent sites (even hike-in sites) to check everyone is following the rules. Trails are maintained well, tent sites were clean and hike-in camp sites are first come first serve but during this weekend we had plenty to choose from!

We didn't make the whole hike, but what we did was beautiful. We had our 5 and 6 year old with us, which made us take a nice slow pace, as there were some decent elevation gains for them. The river right there was wonderful, and there were some great opportunities for pictures. It was fun, especially for the kids, to see rafts and kayaks heading down the river.

hiking
2 months ago

This is a beautiful area. I typically prefer my hikes a little further out than this, but wanted something close to take the kids on (6,7, and 9). They all did extremely well, the little elevation gain always helps. The trail was simple, but had quite a bit of changes to break up the monotony for the kiddos. They loved stopping at the fish hatchery and checking it out. The trail is shared with horse riding, and the kids loved looking for horse tracks, and poop. We spent about 20 minutes just sitting at the Clackamas River watching for animals. We saw a Great Blue Heron, and a few other birds.

beautiful area! lots of disc golfing tho, little hard to find the trails for mountain biking. scenery made up for that

backpacking
2 months ago

My sister and I finished hiking this trail two days. We ended up choosing this trail last minute, it's a long story. Anyways, we would consider this trail more than "unmaintained" or "overgrown". For reference, I hunt and forage and spend a lot of time off trail. This was more similar to that experience. We hiked this trail counter-clockwise starting behind the shooting range and ending back up the road a bit. The hike took us two and a half days and we do not walk slow. Day one it took us 11 hours to hike 11 miles and I normally can cover at least 2/hr. There is a lot of bushwhacking and climbing/crawling over and under fallen trees. I cannot say I would recommend this trail in this condition without a machete.

If one were to start at the "end" of the trail and walk out and back about 8 miles it would be a beautiful but overgrown trail. If the trail was maintained (I understand a lack of human power) it would be a great weekend backpack trip that I could recommend to friends. There are some nice views of the valley and of the creek with a lot of evidence of wildlife.

9 miles RT from trailhead to falls. nice elevation intervals, dogs did well except one got lost in the overgrown shrubs at one point. nice flowers, small parking lot.

Spent Tuesday night at the camp and hiked most of the trail — very serene, easy and quiet! Didn’t pass one other person. I’d definitely recommend this as a really decent spot to take a peaceful, easygoing stroll especially with your dog.

I hiked this today after cycling all the way up from estacada- great workout if crowds bum you out this place is for you not another person anywhere!

Loved the trail and beautiful hike. My German Shepard pup loved it and did great on the trail. My car got broken into so just take extra care. When I parked there was a lot of glass on the ground and more so after my windows were broke so just take extra care with your pups paws in the parking lot.

hiking
3 months ago

Fun little hike, narrows at parts but not bad. A few small creeks you go threw. I did this one after jawbone.

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