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

Very nice hike. The trail can be accessed from either the Paulina Lodge or the paved parking lot right off the road. It is clearly marked. The views from the south side of the creek are most striking and the short trail to the bottom of the falls is good for all ages. Very easy access to stone lookout points on the south side. Not sure how there could be confusion about the easment under the power lines being the trail. The longer trail described above is actually on the north side of the creek (opposite the road and parking lot). It is easily accessed from lodge/boat launch parking area. Trail begins parallel to the creek and there is a stone lookout platform on the north side of the creek as well. Beyond that is a very nice trail which meanders through the piney woods and often offers glimpses of the creek. High desert wildflowers and birds are also part of the nice walk. We saw osprey and their nest. Overall, a very nice hike.
It was pleasant even in late July.

hiking
1 day ago

Beautiful views, and amazing geology with very little effort, but it's also not a one-mile-and-done tourist trail. Even on a weekend day in midsummer, I had it all to myself, and there were only a few other folks at the springs.

hiking
14 days ago

This hike is awesome. I can understand lacking motivation to do it since you can also drive to the top, and tons of people do that very thing. Nevertheless, there are views along the hiking trail that cannot be seen any other way than hiking the trail. I'm talking awesome views! Well worth the steep climb up. I see no reason to start at Paulina Lake along the Crater Rim Trail as this route suggests. Drive 0.7 miles on the road toward Paulina Peak, and you will find a gravel parking area and trailhead. The section of trail from the lake not very interesting anyway. From the trailhead mentioned, it is two miles up and two miles back for a total of four miles. On your way up, watch for side trails to huge rocks. These side trails offer some awesome view angles. Be very careful though! Don't let small children play close to the cliff edges. I don't recommend climbing the huge rocks that jut out. It's tempting, but they are vertical climbs and dangerously situated on the edge of doom below. Just get close enough to the rocks to snap photos of the lakes below or of Paulina Peak above (the trail's destination).

backpacking
14 days ago

It was a fantastic trip do you only thing I would recommend taking this trip in July is lots of mosquito repellent

hiking
14 days ago

Solid hike, intense incline, and amazing views!! You can cut the first 1.5 miles through the flat wooded area and start at the actual trailhead. It's about .3 miles up the main Paulina Peak car road, and there's a parking lot on the right. It's 2 miles up with about 1400 incline from this point.

hiking
14 days ago

Made a quick visit to Big Obsidian Flow. It's set up for tourists as one of several volcanic attractions in the Newberry Caldera between Bend and La Pine. Since I've seen it many times before, I quickly walked through, passing up a number of people along the way. Worth the visit if you haven't seen it. It's illegal to take rocks with you, no matter how tempting the beautiful obsidian is. It's a short loop that most people can handle, and the illustrated signs are fascinating. They should really consider renaming it to Big Obsidian PhLo.

walking
16 days ago

Obsidian! Easy trek with beautiful views. My second trip up.

hiking
17 days ago

Nice easy hike. Super super buggy.

Meh.. it’s pretty and the water is beautiful but the bugs were OUT OF CONTROL! So many nats and mosquitos. The “hot springs” are saying it nicely... they’re shallow but do provide a lot of heat.

A nice easy hike with loads of waterfalls! Very dusty, but worth the hike up to the bridge.

Fun trail with great views of the lake. Definitely recommend starting early and wearing solid hiking shoes as some of the terrain can get a bit sketchy. Otherwise very easy for pros, maybe a little challenging for novices. Took about 3 hours.

I hiked to Mink Lake in late June, on a sunny and only slightly breezy day.

I mentioned the breeze because the combination of June and countless lakes, ponds, bogs, etc ,makes for legions of mosquitoes and other assorted "bugs". I came prepared with Deet and a mosquito net; both were put to constant and good use!

There is ample parking (plus a pit toilet) at the trailhead. The trail sign say "SIX LAKES TRAIL" and mentions Doris Lake, Blow Lake and the junction with the PCT at 6 miles (both heading out and coming back, this section barely clocked at 5.5 miles).

As others have mentioned, the trail (or trails) are well graded and well maintained (even if vegetation was encroaching in places around Mink lake). The whole route is pretty much going through forested areas and I did not have to worry about sunscreen (stopping in open areas for a while may change that). The elevation profile shows that the first section (from parking lot to PCT) is a long and sustained ascent (3+ miles) followed by a 1.5 miles drop to the PCT junction.

At the PCT, I deviated from the direct route and continued west on the PCT to visit Horseshoe lake (instead of heading directly to Porky lake). This brought the total distance out-and-back to just short of 21 miles. On this bright sunny June Saturday, I only met two other people during the course of the 11 hours on the trail; both were PCT section hikers on their way north. No campers, no one fishing. This does not appears to be a high traffic area -- it could also be because there are really not many "views" to speak of beyond the lakes and a few and brief views of the Sisters and Bachelor.

Mink Lake is definitely worth the visit. It feels like a "little Waldo" - minus the crowds -- with deep clean waters, forested shores, a trail along its shoreline. There are a few primitive, but very good, campsites just off the trail (there might be more if you go a bit off trail but I did not check). The size of the lake and the lay of the land did allow for an afternoon breeze to come through and push the mosquitoes away. There is an old shelter, quite dilapidated, on the southeast corner of the lake, with camping spots around too (the shelter itself does not offer much with half the roof gone and only two walls standing.

hiking
21 days ago

La Pine State Park is a mostly overlooked gem along Highway 97 as you near La Pine south of Bend. There are certainly more scenic highlights in the area, but this park is well worth a visit. The trails are usually not very crowded. The Falls River Loop is probably the best trail in the park. The Deschutes Loop is a close second. Mom and I completed the loop along with some extra wandering for just over 7 miles.

While not much elevation gain/loss, there is varied terrain throughout this hike. Dirt, rock, gravel, sand; need to watch your footing as it's easy to trip. The views around the lake are gorgeous. I recommend starting your hike about 10 - 11 am, hike to the hot springs on the edge of the lake (about halfway around and marked), each lunch and relax, then finish.

I've hiked quite a few trails around Central Oregon and really enjoyed this one. Would do again.

The lake was pretty, but it was congested with campers. The views of the lake were the same the whole trail.

Cool hike but the view was the same throughout it.

Amazing views of chaotic lava flows.

great hike! Hiked at night with headlamps with a few other friends. if you know the trail well enough, you can find the natural hot springs! very cool.

The trail is beautiful !! Once we got to it❤️
However, had we followed the directions given on “all trails” I have no idea where we would have ended up. They are wrong!!!! Please review this carefully. Instead if turning on the dirt track where the directions tell you to turn, go one mile further down Paulina East Lake road and then to the left is a paved road leading to a parking log and to the trail head.

The trail was absolutely beautiful and the views were great. The only downside was that there were not many signs to the trailhead and it took a bit to find. Other than that, great hike. Would hike again.

hiking
1 month ago

First time on this trail, I will be back, has some steeper grades but then will give you a flatter section, or a spot to stop to take in the views on the way up. The views are amazing. The trail is great for those looking for a fitness hike/run. Good variation in terrain makes for a fun descent from the top. We parked at the lake and crossed the street. Small bit of manageable snow up at the top.

Easy loop trail around the lake. Views are spectacular. Water on the far side of the lake is emerald green. Could sit and look at Paulina peak for a long time. Weather cooperated in a beautiful 65 degree cloudless way. Saw a soaring bald eagle and several osprey.

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing views. Very small patches of snow. Can see from Washington to California mountains.

on Lucky Lake Trail

backpacking
1 month ago

Great hike. Yes, mosquitoes are out. Trail actually loops North for some distance and switches back to the South before heading West up to the lake (not directly West and up across the contour lines as shown on the map.) 5-6 rather clear areas to pitch a tent for the night, or find rather flat ground on the west side of the lake if they're occupied. Several people were fishing, including us, but no one seemed to have any luck. People were catching a lot of trout at Lava Lake.

This trail is an easy out and back that follows the river to beautiful falls. Children would like it because there are lots of opportunities to wade in the river. My watch showed it was closer to 4.5 miles round trip. We went in late April and it was perfect.

backpacking
2 months ago

Was a good trail, a little on the dusty side and was a little crowded by Cultus lake but once I got into the wilderness area it was a beautiful hike to a nice campsite over looking winopee lake

hiking
2 months ago

This is a great short hike with options to go further along the 6 Lake trail. It’s open now and the gate is open- from the south (La Pine). There is a bit of snow. I’d recommend poles and hiking boots right now.

this trail IS NOT open until end of may. beautiful area but gate closed and still a ton of snow

hiking
2 months ago

Stopped in with kiddos over the weekend for a quick walk. Saw cougar track and scat in the middle of the trail! Back to the car we went!

Beautiful and fascinating place.

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