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The Watchman Trailhead

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

View to The Watchman from the overlook at the trailhead (bobcat)


Hikes starting here

Fees and regulations

  • $30 per vehicle entrance fee to Crater Lake National Park - good for 7 days - or America the Beautiful Pass
  • No pets

Driving Directions

From Portland and the Willamette Valley:

Drive I-5 south to Exit 188 south of Eugene for Highway 58, Oakridge, and Klamath Falls.

Go 86.2 miles on Highway 58, passing through the town of Oakridge, and bear right to merge with Highway 97S.

Proceed south on 97 for 17.9 miles and turn left onto Highway 138 for Diamond Lake and Crater Lake National Park.

After 14.8 miles, turn left for Crater Lake National Park.

In 0.8 miles, reach the Crater Lake North Entrance, where you need to pay the national park entrance fee.

Drive another 8.3 miles and bear right onto Rim Drive.

Go 2.1 miles around the west rim of Crater Lake, and turn left into The Watchman Overlook.


  • This trailhead is only open about four months of the year. The North Entrance to the park may close by mid-October; it reopens anytime between Memorial Day weekend and mid-June, depending on snow conditions. To reach this point during the road closure, enter the park via the South entrance and park at the Rim Village Trailhead. Then hike/ski/snowshoe along the Pacific Crest Trail to The Watchman.
  • Viewpoint over Crater Lake and Wizard Island


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.