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Take the drive up to Mt. Hood on any clear spring or summer day and notice the masses of parked cars along the roadside just west of Government Camp—they’re all there for the Mirror Lake hike. Justifiably so, because this short, fairly easy trail offers glorious views of glacier-capped Mt. Hood reflected in the still waters of the forest-rimmed lake. Bag this one on a weekday and get it all to yourself.
At the roadside trailhead, cross a small wooden bridge and start a short climb to an interpretive sign and larger bridge crossing Camp Creek. The trail then winds up through shady forest on gentle grade and switchbacks up an exposed rockfall slope for the next 1.2 miles. Where the trail levels, come to a fork offering the lake loop or Tom, Dick & Harry Mtn; take the left fork bridging Mirror Lake’s outlet and start a clockwise circuit around the lake. The lower shoreline offers views of the Tom, Dick & Harry Mtn ridge above, while the upper shoreline – along a planked boardwalk – gives the big payoff for this hike—Mt. Hood in all its glory.
As you complete the loop, an option to continue another 1.8 miles up to the higher viewpoint atop Tom, Dick & Harry Mtn is available. Otherwise, finish the loop at the earlier junction, and return to your starting point along the same route.
More info: Mt. Hood National Forest
Mapped by Eli Boschetto Bosco Mountain Photo
- Distance: 4.7
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Mirror Lake trailhead.
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Interpretive sign and bridge over creek.
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Fork left (E) over log bridge for lake loop.
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Divert right (E) on boardwalk to Mirror Lake and Mt. Hood viewpoint.
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Side trail breaks left (NW) up to Tom, Dick and Harry Mtn. Continue straight (NE) to complete lake loop and return.
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The Mirror Lake trail can be extremely crowded on weekends. Do this one on a weekday and have it all to yourself.
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An interpretive sign at the crossing of Camp Creek offers info on the area.
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The fairly easy Mirror Lake trail is covered for much of the way by cool forest.
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Where the trail forks for Mirror Lake or Tom, Dick & Harry Mtn, veer left over a small bridge to start the lake loop.
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The shoreline of Mirror Lake is dotted in late spring with clumps of these 3-leaved beauties.
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From a short boardwalk on the west side of the lake, enjoy views of Mt. Hood.