MT. HOOD’S WATERFALLS AND LAKES
FROM CHOPPER’S EYES AND IMAGINATION!
If you want or need more information, directions, or personal experiences about the lakes and waterfalls in our area, please ask our information specialists at Mt. Hood Adventure. 503-715-2175
Mt. Hood Adventure has many tours around the area lakes and waterfalls. Please visit our hiking or canoe/kayaking pages for more information about our scheduled tours, or set up a private tour with one of our expert guides to take you out for as long as you want and to the exact spot you would like to visit.
HIDDEN POND (Lake)
One of the shortest walks to a lake located in the Mt. Hood Wilderness area. Although small, it is a nice destination for your family picnic. I personally find the Rhododendrons and Beargrass blooms much more spectacular than the lake itself and highly recommend this hike in the month of June. A moderate four miles roundtrip makes this a nice distance for people not wanting to get too far out there. The one little thing that comes with lakes, snow melt, and late spring/early summer is a little mosquito monster that thinks that you are there for their picnic, so come prepared!
One of the most popular hikes in the Mt. Hood National Forest, this moderate 3.2 mile trek offers a diversity of trees and under story as you walk along a well maintained, wide enough for holding hands, trail. Once you reach the lake at 1.4 miles, continue the .4 miles around the lake to witness the post card perfect picture of Mt. Hoods reflection in this beautiful lake. Although Mt. Hood looms in the background, take the time to notice the lakes backdrop of Tom Dick and Harry Mountain, and Mt. Hood Skibowls backcountry terrain! Because the beauty attracts so many people, there is currently signs and some fencing to keep people off the areas that are being re-vegetated. Everyone should tread lightly and do their share to help keep our forest beautiful.
WIND LAKE AND THE 5 LAKES BASIN
One of the least known and visited lakes in the area, Wind Lake is a gem! Rough Skinned Newts paddle around in the lake showing you their orangish feet with every stroke. There is a perfect rock outcropping that just calls your name for lunch, and the best thing of all is that you can turn this into an under 2 mile hike by taking Mt. Hood Skibowls chairlifts to the top of Skibowl Peak!
Wow! If you like floating around and staring at Mt. Hood, then this is the place to be. Accessible by vehicle there is a great campground and day use area to help you recreate at this unbelievable lake. After you have made a couple laps around the lake, take the time to walk the easy two-mile walk around the lake. Diverse trees and a number of wildflowers make the perfect setting at dawn and dusk to relax and watch the waterfowl and birds.
If you have never been around more frogs than you can count, then it is worth your while to visit Frog Lake. A small but beautiful lake that has great fishing and camping.
TWIN LAKES, UPPER AND LOWER
If you are looking to hike into the National Forest to find your lake, then Twin Lakes is for you. Starting off on the Pacific Crest Trail, you can do a moderate 5.1 miles around Lower Twin Lake, with all kinds of options to get a few extra miles in, with offerings of another lake and buttes.
Clear Lake is where Mt. Hood Adventure takes guests to canoe and kayak through and around old tree stumps that eerily poke themselves up out of the water. Fog seems to settle on Clear Lake regularly which adds to the quietness of an early morning paddle. Quiet until the motorboat passes by on the way to some great fishing. Motorboats are allowed with a 10mph limit. Bald Eagle, Osprey, and waterfowl are among some of your friends that you may see.
LITTLE CRATER LAKE
Mt. Mazama (Crater Lake) did not create this crystal clear gem in the Mt. Hood National Forest, but it is a super deep lake created by a spring. No fishing or swimming is available at this lake, but it is well worth the short walk in to see it. The trail continues on to Timothy Lake, so if you are looking for more mileage and a swim, then continue on.
Timothy Lake is the largest in the area. It is accessible by vehicle and you are allowed to have motorboats in the lake at 10 MPH. Stocked with some big rainbows and kokanee, it makes an ideal place to spend the day trolling around for your dinner! There are 5 campgrounds on southeast side of the lake, one at the north end, and a couple that you can boat to on the western side of the lake.
Ramona Falls is a very popular waterfall that will take you into the Mt. Hood Wilderness. This 7.2 mile loop will take you along the Sandy River up to the 50-foot waterfall. The return trip follows Ramona Creek and at the base of huge cliffs. I highly recommend the loop, since descending down along Ramona Creek is like a fairy tail land out of a book with the happiest of endings!
Umbrella and Sahalie Falls
In 4.7 miles you pass by two beautiful waterfalls. Umbrella Falls is a 60’ waterfall and Sahale Falls is a spectacular 100 feet.
Tamanawas means a friendly guardian spirit and believed by Indigenous Peoples. This 100’ waterfall is an easy hike in, and the trail will lead you behind this fantastic waterfall. Gorgeous area and spectacular waterfall.
Little Zig Zag Falls
The shortest hike in takes you through fairytale land along side a gorgeous creek up to this 30’ waterfall coming from the snowfield and glacier melt. A great beginning hike for kids since you can complete the .5-mile round trip trail in less than an hour.
Multnomah Falls Loop Drive
The Gorge is home to a shipload of waterfalls. The biggest and the most well know is Multnomah Falls. At 620’ it is said to be the second tallest waterfall in the United States, which flows year round! It is fantastic! A paved, one-mile hike up to the top is well worth it. There are a number of trails and loops that you can also do from the Multnomah trailhead.
There are over 15 significant falls in the Gorge area, different types, and different ways to access them. The majority are all along the Old Columbia River Highway and you can view them from inside your vehicle, or take a short walk to the base of the falls. Others take a pair of hiking boots and a picnic to get to. Others even take wading in the creek to get to. So many waterfalls and so little time. You will have to come back!