Linton Lake


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  • Trail name: Linton Lake
  • Distance: 3 miles
  • elevation gain: 250  ft
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Fishing: Brown trout, Brook trout

Linton Lake was formed by a Lava flow that dammed up the creek running through the valley.  The lake is about 70 acres in size and rests in a sheltered valley at 4000 ft in elevation. Fish in the lake average 8-13 inches, but there are some monsters that live in there up to 10+ pounds. The best time for fishing the lake is right before the snows hit and most people are gearing up for hunting season. This is a great short hike for a family with small children.  If you hike to the far side of the lake there are several small waterfalls on the incoming creek.

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The trail starts out at a small campground along Highway 242 called Alder Springs Campground.  This small undeveloped campground is a good spot to camp with tents.  The sites are too small for much else in the way of camping vehicles. From your car, cross the road, and look for a set of stairs leading up to a trail sign marking the Linton Lake Trail. This is a wilderness access trail so you will need to fill out a short form at the trail head  From here, travel along the well graded trail under Douglas firs. The route is easy to follow and well maintained. The route comes to a closed off junction, then starts a mild climb up a hill to the right at about 3/4 mile. The trail climbs up the hillside then comes to a flat section with many lava boulders. This is the high point of the hike. The trail now descends in a few switchbacks, than you see your first views of Linton Lake at 1 1/8 mile from the road. The route continues another 3/8 mile descending along the lakes edge to a group of campsites at one of the lakes two inlets Obsidian Creek.

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Directions: From the McKenzie River Ranger Station, drive east on Highway 126 about 2 miles to the junction with Highway 242. Then drive about 11 miles up Highway 242 to Linton Lake Trail head, located to the left as you drive.  The trail head begins at Alder Springs Campground.

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