Backpacking Lookout Mountain
This week, we take the boys on a backpacking trip up to Oval Lake and Lookout Mountain to see the Perseid Meteor Shower, test out using Hyperlapse and Night Lapse, and see one of the best views in Oregon.
- First, you will need a NW Forest Pass or equivalent before heading out. Visit the link to see where you can purchase them.
- Set your map to Fifteen Mile Creek Campground. Keep driving 0.3 miles past the campground on Cold Springs Road until you cross Fret Creek and see the gravel pullout. The trailhead is on the southwest side of the creek.
- For a KML of the hike from the trailhead, past the lake and up to Lookout Mountain, visit Lookout.kml.
This hike is great for kids for a couple of reasons:
- The drive to the trailhead is on paved access roads. No gravel trekking required.
- Only 1.3 miles up to the lake. There are some steep climbs, but if you leave yourself enough time, most kids over 6 could make it.
- There is water from the lake. Sure, it will clog your filter, but it is better than having to haul water with you.
- There are developed campsites on the south (and apparently one or two on the north) that are not frequently used. If by chance there is a group up there, there are plenty of level spots to camp.
- There are two optional trips from the lake – one to the Flag Point Lookout and the other to Lookout Mountain. If your kids are up to the challenge, both are interesting to visit. During the summer, the Flag Point lookout is staffed, and you can try your luck at being invited up to see the view (Ranger discretion of course). During the off season, you can rent the lookout here (book early, it books up a long time in advance).
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