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Bobby Lake Hike

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

Looking across Bobby Lake from the west shore (bobcat)
Large western mountain aster (Symphyotrichum spathulatum), Bobby Lake Trail (bobcat)
End of Eugene to Pacific Crest Trail route, Bobby Lake Trail (bobcat)
Tall western white pine, Bobby Lake Trail (bobcat)
The short trail to Bobby Lake (not a GPS track) (bobcat) Courtesy: Caltopo/USFS
  • Start point: Bobby and Betty Lakes TrailheadRoad.JPG
  • End Point: Bobby Lake
  • Hike Type: In and out
  • Distance: 4.2 miles
  • Elevation gain: 275 feet
  • High Point: 5,610 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Seasons: Summer into fall
  • Family Friendly: Yes
  • Backpackable: Yes
  • Crowded: No



A great short hike, backpack, or bike ride for kids, the gently undulating Bobby Lake Trail deposits you on the shore of a lovely mountain lake with Maiden Peak rearing to the south. There are campsites near the lake shore, and Bobby Lake is rated one of the best swimming lakes in Oregon! As with the entire Waldo Lake area, mosquitoes can be a problem, but the swarms should have abated by mid-August.

The Bobby Lake Trail begins on the east side of the road, while the even shorter (1/2 mile) trail to Betty Lake begins on the west side. Both trails are part of the Eugene to Pacific Crest Trail, which commences at Skinner Butte in Eugene.

The relatively flat Bobby Lake Trail heads off into a dry mountain hemlock forest with scattered western white pines. Little grouseberry bushes dot the forest floor. In some areas, there are significant colonies of lodegpole pine. Blue diamonds mark the way for winter recreationists. Lupine will be blooming in various patches along the way. Soon you’ll come to the crossing of the Gold Lake Trail #3677, first on the left and then on the right.

The trail drops a little and then undulates slightly to cross a little draw before following another shallow draw and dipping into a rocky depression where a few wildflowers bloom. Then a post prematurely declares the ‘end’ of the Eugene to Pacific Crest Trail (the original route of the PCT came in here from the south and then headed east a little way on the Bobby Lake Trail before turning north). You’ll rise from here to the new junction with the Pacific Crest Trail.

From the junction, the trail continues straight to thread through mountain hemlock forest to reach the west shore of Bobby Lake. The trail continues along the north shore of Bobby Lake as the Deschutes National Forest’s Moore Creek Trail. There are a few campsites set back from the shore. Day visitors should go right to a large rock slab which inclines into the water, an excellent spot from which to launch a frigid mountain dip.

Fees, Regulations, etc.

  • Share trail with mountain bikers and horses
  • Lots of mosquitoes until August


  • Maps: Hike Finder
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: Waldo Lake Wilderness
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: Middle Fork Ranger District
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: Willamette National Forest
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: Deschutes National Forest
  • Pacific Northwest Recreation Map Series: Willamette Cascades
  • Pacific Northwest Recreation Map Series: Central Oregon Cascades
  • Adventure Maps: Oakridge, Oregon Trail Map

Trip Reports

Related Discussions / Q&A

Guidebooks that cover this destination

  • Best Hikes With Kids: Oregon by Bonnie Henderson & Zach Urness
  • Best Hikes with Children: Western & Central Oregon by Bonnie Henderson
  • Bend, Overall by Scott Cook
  • 100 Hikes: Central Oregon Cascades by William L. Sullivan
  • Best Short Hikes in Northwest Oregon by Rhonda & George Ostertag
  • Hiking Central Oregon & Beyond by Virginia Meissner
  • A Handful of Trails: Willamette National Forest by the U.S. Forest Service

More Links

Page Contributors

Oregon Hikers Field Guide is built as a collaborative effort by its user community. While we make every effort to fact-check, information found here should be considered anecdotal. You should cross-check against other references before planning a hike. Trail routing and conditions are subject to change. Please contact us if you notice errors on this page.

Hiking is a potentially risky activity, and the entire risk for users of this field guide is assumed by the user, and in no event shall Trailkeepers of Oregon be liable for any injury or damages suffered as a result of relying on content in this field guide. All content posted on the field guide becomes the property of Trailkeepers of Oregon, and may not be used without permission.