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

A bit of snow in the last ~200 feet. But easy to walk through in tennis shoes.

hiking
23 days ago

Such a beautiful hike in these last Fall days before the snow. An easy, ever changing hike by the river up to our turn around point at Slick Rock.

Very nice hike We hiked to the falls about 6-7 miles round trip. Beautiful woods and some open meadows. Was especially nice to sit in the sun by the falls to eat lunch.

beautiful and lots of uphill.
we did it in 5 days. pretty cold as we did it the last week of September. take time to stop and look. so beautiful

backpacking
1 month ago

The hike up was pretty nice. The views along the way were stunning, but the lake... spectacular.

backpacking
2 months ago

An incredibly beautiful trip. We did this in three days but wished we had spent at least 5 days ! This is a great post Labor Day trip as there were not too many people. First night at 6 miles meadow was in the upper 20s but beautiful sunny days.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful, just beautiful! One of the prettiest hikes I’ve done. The mountains are so close and Slick Rock Falls was awesome. The three mile hike to the falls was not a very hard trek. I highly recommend!

backpacking
2 months ago

Absolutely amazing. We went on Labor Day weekend and were bummed when we saw how crowded the trail head and trails were. but when we got to the lake we felt like we had the whole place to ourselves! There are lots of little coves and many camp spots all around the lake, so even when there are a lot of people there is room to spread out. We must have picked a nice time of year to visit because we didn't experience the mosquito problems others have mentioned.
If you don't backpack often and aren't used to carrying heavy packs, leave early and give yourself plenty of time for breaks. It basically gentle uphill the entire way with some slightly steeper parts near the top.
If you like fishing, this is the place. We caught one with a piece of floss and a safety pin so I'm pretty sure anyone can get something!
Ill definitely be back sometime to summit the Matterhorn and see some more of the lakes Eagle Cap has to offer!

backpacking
2 months ago

It is gorgeous here, get your camp sites on Friday before everyone else. My biggest advice for here is to bring a load of bug spray. I just bought a Thermacell unit because of my trip here. There were clouds of mosquitos. To the point where we hid in our tents and just yelled at each other from them for conversation. They were getting stuck in our lashes and snorted up our noses, it was pretty awful. Outside of the bugs, it was gorgeous. We made the trek up to Matterhorn but couldn’t go the last 100 feet. It was all skree and melting snow (we went at the end of July). We kept watching others attempt it to see if they found another way that we missed but everyone ended up turning around. It was a real bummer to not summit Matterhorn but the views were still gorgeous! I also suggest being on top of SPF here. The trail doesn’t offer much protection from the sun, not even the areas in the trees. Everyone got a bit burned, we kept sweating our sunblock off. The hike up was over cast so we didn’t realize it wasn’t as protected a trail. The hike down was 90 degrees and a cloudless sky. Everyone kept taking standing breaks under the few shade areas and drinking water. So bring a hat and get ready for the miles!

camping
2 months ago

Absolutely amazing trip, took us a little over 5 hours in. Most the elevation gain is in the last few miles of the hike, with several switch backs. The lake is breathtaking and the stars at night are worth every step.

fishing
2 months ago

Absolutely amazing little hike. We hiked in with our fly rods and continued onto the Matterhorn that evening, eating dinner on top. It is a Great Lake to camp at and is packed wit Brooke Trout. The hiking was great and the fishing was better. About 9 miles to ice lake. Doable in 3-4 hours depending on how often you stop to look at the waterfalls and meadows filled with wildflowers.

hiking
2 months ago

8 miles from the car park to Ice Lake heaven, 16 miles in total. It was totally amazing- both the scenery along the way and Ice Lake which was beautiful and larger than expected. Certain parts of the hike were TOUGH... loose rocks about 2/3 up and the switchbacks near the top. A full day required, with extra water and snacks recommended. LOVED it and hope to return again in the future. My feet hurt, and the beer now back at base is delicious. Cheers.

2 months ago

With 40 lb packs it took us less than five hours to reach Ice Lake. Amazing views the entire way. While steep in areas, the trail was clear and easy to hike 95% of the way. (Some small sections were composed entirely of loose rocks).
Set up camp, then hiked up Matterhorn (much more difficult) and back to Ice Lake in about three hours. (Wind really picked up, so we skipped Sacagawea)

There were two other groups of campers on Thursday, but tons of people headding up on Friday while we were heading down.

Amazing area.

We did this as a day hike. The trail was in great shape; it’s very well graded throughout so there are very few steep portions. The last mile before Frazier Lake had some larger rocks to scramble over but over all an excellent trail. Can’t wait to do the entire loop some day.

There are some disagreements on the length; my fiancée suspects that they lengthened the switchbacks, because they were so gentle. We calculated 8.5 miles to the lake. It took us four hours to get there, but we could have been faster. It's probably better to camp at the lake and enjoy the views rather than try to do it all in a day, though a day hike is certainly possible. Beautiful mountain views, some wide grasslands, and the lake is gorgeous.

hiking
2 months ago

backpacking
3 months ago

8/01 - 8/03: Went in to Aneroid Lake via the east fork then over Polaris Pass and up to Glacier Lake finshed through the Basin and down the west fork. Awesome trip!! Stunning scenery, Bugs a non factor, water refreshing, and fish biting!! Trails down from Polaris Pass in pretty rough shape, but worth the extra effort!!

3 months ago

Absolutely AMAZING! Worth the hike up. Got eaten alive by mosquitoes no matter what we did, but would totally do it again. The view is worth it.

Beautiful trial! Go in the early morning so you could enjoy the scenery more before you need to return down to wallowa.

backpacking
3 months ago

7/30 - left trailhead at 8:30am and arrived at 6-mile meadows at 11:30 am, crossed river and had lunch, started up Lakes trail at 1pm and arrived at Horseshoe Lake at 2:30pm, made camp on August Island, swam in lake, weather was stellar, bugs not bad, bean and rice burritos for dinner
7/31 - up at 7am, breakfast of eggs, biscuits, and prosciutto, swam in lake, packed up and onto Mirror Lake at 9am, arrived at Mirror Lake at 11am and made camp on lake with great view of Eagle Cap, hiked to both ends of Mirror Lake in afternoon, briefly saw a group of bighorn sheep in west meadow that were quickly scared off by another hiker's dog
8/1 - headed for Eagle Cap at 7:15am and made summit by 8:45am, trail was very good and clear of snow, unfortunately a haze of smoke was in the area, diminishing the incredible views, on return made scramble to small peak on other side of Horton Pass and had lunch, unable to traverse ridge further to Minam Lake trail, but had nice views of Minam and Blue lakes
8/2 - late breakfast and broke camp, backpacked to Glacier Pass around 11am, absolutely beautiful at Glacier Lake, arrived around 1pm, jumped in icy cold lake and had lunch, considered staying, but headed for Frazier Lake around 2:30pm, gorgeous views on downhill traverse to Frazier along creek coming out of Glacier Lake, arrived at Frazier around 3:30pm, an underwhelming lake in comparison to Glacier, decided to keep hiking for 6-mile Meadows, crossed back over river about 4:30pm, arrived in meadows around 6:30pm
8/3 - broke camp and hit trail at around 9am for easy 6-mile descent to trailhead, arrived just after noon, great trip and beautiful area, would highly recommend and plan to go back

backpacking
3 months ago

Gorgeous hike, the whole way. The lake is stunning, the color of the water unreal. Wildflowers everywhere. Didn’t want to leave. Mosquitoes are not playing games, but didn’t have any problem with them until ~6 pm.

hiking
3 months ago

absolutely beautiful, one of my favs.

hiking
3 months ago

We did the hike as an out and back. It was doable as a day hike but would have been a lot better to stay overnight and not be crunched for time. The views were amazing with lots of waterfalls and a beautiful lake view at the end as a reward.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike, beautiful views, varied terrain. There was still some snow on the trail but it was passable with a little side stepping.

Knocked this trail out today. The trail starts off fairly gradual but starts climbing pretty quickly up the side of the mountain via switchbacks. I have read other articles that says this is the steepest trail in the Wallowa’s. It was created by miners but is still maintained. I started at 4am because I did not want to make the grind up in the beating sun. The trail crosses a few streams as it makes its way up the valley. I made it to Legore mine (old copper mine) and also found what looks to be remnants of an old log cabin. These are remnants from pioneer Joe Legore who’s family came east on the Oregon trail and were one of the first settlers in the Wallowa valley. A few feet inside the mine there is an ammo can where you can sign in on the papers that have been left inside, some interesting reads. From here I continued up where the trail disappears from time to time. There is no true trail at this point but others have worn a path that leads to an awesome meadow. From the meadow it continues up the valley over boulders and a few snow fields to the 2nd meadow where you have a great view of the back of Sawtooth Peak. A trail leads up from the left at this point which takes you up to a saddle which overlooks Legore lake, a tarn that is stocked with fish, (8,950 feet) which is the highest true lake in the state of Oregon. From the saddle above Legore Lake there are great views of the back side of Chief Joseph mountain and Twin Peaks. After resting for an hour I turned around and flew back down the trail. The views are incredible but make no mistake this trail is a beast and goes straight up in several areas. Just remember the true trail ends at the Legore mine, from that point forward it is up to you. Legore lake is probably a mile to a mile and a half-ish past Legore mine. I saw no one else on the trail. It is a steep descent be very careful and bring first aid just in case. Bugs were minimal. I uploaded a bunch of pics of the trail, mine, cabin, meadows, lake, etc.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike but tough! Did 5 miles out and back to the first stream crossing. Very petty and a tough 1500’ of gain and then loss!

3 months ago

We dayhiked on Saturday and left the trailhead around 9 am. We clocked it on GPS at 7.5 miles to the lake which took us around 3 hours to get to the top. There are breathtaking views all along the way, and it follows a gorgeous waterfall for the last couple miles. The lake was clear, full of fish and cold but swimmable. On the way back down we passed at least 10 small groups of backpackers heading up. This hike is for sure is the talk of the town and for good reason!

hiking
4 months ago

My friend and I hiked to Ice Lake from the trailhead in Wallowa Lake State Park on July 15. We had read conflicting reviews about the length and found that the sign at the trailhead does indeed say 9 miles to Ice Lake. My gps tracked us and said 6.6 miles to the lake and about 13.6 when we returned to the trailhead. The trail is very well maintained and has well-placed switchbacks that facilitate the 3200’ elevation gain without any steep or grueling sections, although some do cross a relatively narrow scree field. There are incredible views around every corner and intermittent tree cover for shade. The lake itself was utterly,breath-takingly beautiful! Cold but swimmable. I highly recommend this hike!

According to Forest Service the trail is about 9m each way. We go in July when there is no snow on the trail. It takes about 6 hours to get up, maybe less getting down, with a 30m lunch break and a few rests.
It’s unreal up there.... absolutely amazing.

This trail was very well marked and easy to follow. Lots of wildflowers lined the path and there were multiple stream crossings that did get our feet a little wet when we weren’t careful. On a beautiful July day it was worth it. Bonny Lake is a shallow glacier-fed lake and you’ll want to be prepared for mosquitoes.

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