Clear Lake – Hiking, Fishing, Boating, Camping

Clear Lake is a crystal clear glacial spring fed lake located 90 minutes outside Eugene on highway 126. If was formed over 3,000 years ago when lava flows damned the McKenzie river and created the lake the see today. The lake itself is divided up into two sections, the North end and the South End. The water in the lake has a temperature of about 40 degrees farenheit year round. (COLD!)

Photographer: Gary Halvorson

Location: Clear Lake is located approximately 90 minutes outside Eugene Oregon directly off of highway 126. Look for the sign for Clear Lake on the right side of the road about a mile after you pass Sahalie Falls.
Google Maps – Eugene to Clear Lake – Click Here for the Map

Adventure Specifics:

The Clear Lake Hiking Loop is a 5 mile off shoot of the McKenzie River Trail that circles Clear Lake and passes the headwaters of the McKenzie River and traverses through a 3,000 year old Lava flow. It’s open to hikers and mountain bikers, but the west side of the trail closes periodically to protect nesting Bald Eagles. Check with the ranger at Clear Lake before you set out on your hike. The trail has moderate trail rating and is usually open from late spring until the first snow of fall.

During the late Spring and Summer the fishing at Clear Lake is fantastic! The lake is regularly stocked with trout and it’s not uncommon to pull out daily limits. The best fishing is towards the southwest end of the lake as the fish tend to congregate in the shallow, more vegetated waters. I’ve been diving here many times and it’s not uncommon to see some larger 16-20 inch trout swimming around.

Non-motorized boating is allowed on the lake and Clear Lake Resort rents rowboats for a small fee. Please check additional boating regulations with the rangers at the lake.

Clear Lake is a full Resort with cabins and campsites available for rent. Please check out the Clear Lake Resort page below for more information:

General Comments:The North end of the lake is the most well know area of Clear Lake. There is a small lodge, cabins available for rental, a small snack/food/general store. The south end has a small boat ramp and is home to a large campground.

Time Involved: There is tons to do at Clear Lake, you can spend as much time as you’d like.

Best Time to Go: Late Spring, Summer, and Early Fall. The major amenities at Clear Lake are open in the summer months. The main road down to the lake is usually snowed in during the winter months.

Amenities: Toilets, Snacks, Restaurant, Cabins, Camping, Row Boating.

Warnings: The water in Clear Lake is extremely cold year round. About 40 degrees farenheit. Hypothermia can set in quickly if you swim without proper exposure protection.

Link to More Information:

Adventures Nearby: Sahalie Falls, Koosah Falls, Tamolitch Pool, Trail Bridge Reservoir/Campground