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Pyramid Lake Hike

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

View of Pyramid Lake (bobcat)
Gnome plant (Hemitomes congestum), Pyramid Lake (bobcat)
Zoned polypore, Pyramid Lake (bobcat)
Blue shows the road walk and red indicates the trail in to the lake (not a GPS track) (bobcat) Courtesy: Caltopo
  • Start point: Pyramid Lake Road TrailheadRoad.JPG
  • End point: Pyramid Lake
  • Hike Type: In and out
  • Distance: 2.4 miles
  • Elevation gain: 340 feet
  • High Point: 3,981 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Seasons: Late Spring into Fall
  • Family Friendly: Yes
  • Backpackable: Yes
  • Crowded: No



Shallow, five-acre Pyramid Lake was included in the 2009 designation of the Roaring River Wilderness even though it can be a popular weekend destination for the rowdy party crowd (short hike in, outhouse, numerous established campsites). However, during the shoulder seasons or midweek, it can be a peaceful little place and a good short backpack trip for families. While you can drive the 0.7 miles up the rough 140 spur from its junction with the 150 spur to the trailhead, those with passenger cars may want to walk up that track; even owners of AWD vehicles may not want their finish scratched up by all the overhanging brush. Once at Pyramid Lake, extend the walk by going around the lake; there are secluded campsites on the opposite shore.

Walk up the FR 140 spur along the narrow, rough road overhung by alders and maples. You'll cross a tributary of High Rock Creek and pass a swampy area before reaching the Pyramid Lake Trailhead. The trail heads steeply up from the parking area, a location characterized by crushed beer cans in a fire circle. The sign here says Pyramid Lake Trail #727 1/4 mile. Hike up in secondary silver fir, mountain hemlock, and huckleberry woods. Enter a darker, thicker copse of second growth. Ascend again before the trail levels. There’s an outhouse off to the left and a large campsite. Reach the lake shore and another campsite.

Go left on the trail around Pyramid Lake. Alder and willow line the shore and bracken and rhododendrons flourish under mountain hemlocks. Pass along a thicket of vine maple at the bottom of a large talus slope. Reach a campsite on the far side of the lake and then cross another talus slope. There are more campsites here, too, as you complete the circle.

Fees, Regulations, etc.

  • none


  • Maps: Hike Finder
  • Pyramid Lake Trail #727 (USFS)
  • Green Trails Maps: High Rock, OR #493
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: Clackamas River Ranger District
  • Discover Your Northwest: Mt. Hood National Forest North: Trail Map & Hiking Guide
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: Mt. Hood National Forest
  • National Geographic Trails Illustrated Map: Mount Hood
  • Adventure Maps: Mt. Hood Area

Trip Reports

Related Discussions / Q&A

Guidebooks that cover this hike

  • 105 Virtual Hikes of the Mt. Hood National Forest by Northwest Hiker

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.