For our 11th wedding anniversary we opted to hike up to Burnt Lake. Weather was cool and overcast with a slight chance of some clearing. We were hoping to maybe catch a break and get some views from either the lake or up just a bit higher on East Zigzag, sadly no views were to be found, but it was still a stellar hike.
To get to the trailhead, we take 95% of the same route that we took to do Ramona Falls, but instead of turning left to head up to the Ramona Falls Trailhead, we stayed straight and went up a sometimes questionable dirt road to a dead end and the parking lot. Thank goodness for the Subaru. Seriously all of the vehicles except maybe 2 were either AWD or 4WD. I felt bad for the Honda Civic because there is no way it got up there without some serious undercarriage scraping.
The hike itself to Burnt Lake is pretty gentle and gains about 1,300′ in almost 4 miles. There are 7 primitive campsites around the lake, though no fires are allowed near the lake. There are enough signs to tell you that along the way.
There was some pretty heavy mist when we first got up to the lake. It was hard to see much of anything, but in less than 5 minutes we got a smidge of clearing.
From here to East Zigzag gains almost 1000′ more feet in only 1.4 miles. It’s gradual at first, then a few switchbacks, then about 0.3 miles of steepness. Again, no views because of the mist, but still a great place to stop for lunch.
We didn’t mess around for too long at the top. The temps were probably low 50’s and coupled with the damp and a couple good gusts of wind every now and again, it was kind of chilly.
The debate now is do we hike back here to camp or go back to twin lakes first? I’m leaning towards Burnt Lake mostly for another chance to get some views of Mt. Hood.
That’s about it for now, all pics here
Thanks for reading,
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