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Waldo Lake Trail

Average Rating:    (4.63 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 19

Classic track. Rolling, technical in places, with some climbing and decending. DON'T STRAY OFF TRAIL INTO WILDERNESS AREAS!!! Take water and food.

Waldo Lake is one of the purist lakes in the WORLD. Very clear and VERY cold.
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Latitude
43.69965122967144
Longitude
-122.0526123046875
Trail Directions
follow I-5 south from Portland, OR or North from Grants Pass, OR to Hwy 58 (exit for Oakridge, OR). Follow 58 southeast for 27 miles to the Waldo Lake turn off (left). Follow that entrance road to any of the campgrounds (I prefer the Shadow Bay boat ramp). Park and ride around the lake clockwise out left side of boat ramp.
Trail Length
~22 miles
Trail Level
Advanced
Trail Type
Singletrack
City/County
Oakridge
Web Address
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (19 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
August 2, 2006

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: bloody ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
Rode last weekend, temp was in the mid 70's and nice for the ride. I've been doing 80+ miles a week commuting, but was not up for this ride at all... Aerobically it was very challenging, maybe the elevation and to a degree the technicality. We rode it counter-clockwise and because of time we rode up the road from Shadow bay to the main road and over hill and down into North Waldo where we were camping. The ride down the hill was nice and scenic and watch the road as we were up to 30 quickly on the downhill even on the knobbies. My friend rode a rigid 700c old-time mountain bike and other than a messed up rear rim, it worked well. There were lots of exposed roots and rocks and rocks hidden on edges of the trail by bushes, so keep a sharp eye.

Recommended Route:
Counter-clockwise from any of the campgrounds. Stay on the trial and watch out for hikers. I think we got lucky as the lower temperature kept most of the hikers/bikers and campers away for the weekend, so we had a pristine ride with only one set of hikers encountered very early on in the day. We both used up 100 oz of water even though the temperature was low, so bring a full hydration pack and if the temp is hotter, you may want to bring a filter or an additional drink or two. We each ate 2 power bars, bring sunscreen for the exposed portion on the north end and bugspray. The skeeters were swarming us every time we stopped and one time, I was just slowing down when my buddy stopped to get a rock out of his shoe and they started dive-bombing me... I took off and my buddy was getting nailed until he got moving again.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
The only other trail like this that I've done is the McKenzie river.. and this one is way harder due to elevation, technicality and just length if nothing else. On the McKenzie trial, if you get tired, you can hit the road anytime to get back to your campsite, this is very remote in comparison, but much less crowded and pristine.



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Review Date
August 23, 2005

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: wvanbusk ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
Fairly level 23.0 mile singletrack loop at around 5000' elevation in a very nice area. North area burned in 1996 has not recovered much but is only about 4 miles of full sun exposure with lots of roots and a few rocks, but only one tough rocky spot that is easily decended going counter-clockwise. The lake outfall is in the northwest just beyond the edge of the burn and is bridged. All water crossings are bridged and nearly all wet areas are built up with logs and gravel fill. There were only two major logs across the trail at this time, one was too big to climb. The west side has some short steep sections going either way, one in particular is a series of about five widely spaced two foot bolders dropping steeply counter-clockwise, not ridable (for me anyway). The west is shadey and cool, but dry. The south is populated around the campgrounds and can be very fast. There was only one wet stream in mid-August just west of Shadow Bay CG. The east side has the biggest climb, but it's only about 500' gain and it's moderately exposed and very dry. Wonderful smooth narrow downhill curves in the last 3 miles going CC, with only a few roots. This is the nicest trail in Oregon. Ridden Sunday Aug 21, 2005

Recommended Route:
Most bikers are going CC and start at North Waldo CG. There are several shoreline trails forking off in Shadow Bay so slow down and watch for the right turn to stay on single track. There is a dead end (closed) road that follows the water pipe line which does connect to the trial north of Shadow Bay, but is is unimproved and has a few small logs to jump or bypass. I would call this a viable cross country route. Also once at the Islet CG the road will lead down to the shoreline trail and some nice less crowded beaches if you want to cool down befor getting to N Waldo CG. However that trail has a lot of hikers. Friday-Saturday was very busy. Sunday mid-moring was fine. Monday was awesome. Bring your paddle craft and your swim trunks and get there early to get a campsite.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
There is a dirt road across from the entrance to N Waldo CG that goes deeply into the wilderness through the burn area and crosses over into the Cascades Lakes region. It's also a four wheel route. Check the map to see how high it climbs and what loop you might make with it. The wilderness trails are patrolled by rangers. Going back down this road would be a blast for hard core speeders, so making a loop is not necessary since when your catching air and raising a cloud of dust sliding around corners, the downhill direction looks very different.



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Review Date
September 24, 2004

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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4.00 of 5, 1.00 votes

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Reviewed by: Mb-3'r ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
Rode this trail 8/31/04. Was just going to bike for a few miles but after starting and seeing how good a trial it was decided to bike the entire loop. Started from the North Waldo CG. The first few miles take you through the forest fire zone which has not recovered much since 1996?. Mostly flat, a few blowdowns, pretty eerie scenery. It then goes into the forest with the trail softening up- lots of pine needles, really smooth riding. About 6 miles out? you cross a footbridge and there is some type of primitive campgound off to your left. Past this there is a large gravel slide about 100 yards long that dumps into the lake- don't be leaning left!
You can see into the water which is amazingly clear.

The ride gets a little more technical after this but it is still much easier than most trails (Eula, goodman, hardesty, willimette) around the
area. I did the trail in 3 hours 15 minutes but I'm pushing 40 and could lose about the same.
Passed only 1 hiker in 22 miles, near shadow bay CG. You can get water at any of the 3 CGs on the lake.

Great scenery. Unlike the S. willamette trail near oakridge, which looks like a set on Jurassic park with ferns, moss, old growth, Waldo lake reminded me of Colorado. Passed by a few ponds along the way. The picture show a footbridge by one of them- luckily just a little mud-no snow now. Got rained on but no skeeters this time of year.

This is the kind of ride that, once you have done it you immediately begin planning to do it again. Ranks up there with McKenzie river trail but you don't have to shuttle this one.

Recommended Route:
Counter clockwise from North Waldo CG works. The last mile is almost all downhill.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Don't think you'll find a bad one in/near Oakridge,



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Review Date
August 8, 2004

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: earthwormtractors ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
Rode Waldo for the first time August 2004. There's a rumor the Forest Circus is considering banning bikes there so I figgered I'd better ride it while it was still legal. Now on to the review: The North side of the lake as tons of blowdown were the fire was. I'm talkin 50 + trees. (this may change if I get back down there with my Stihl). West side is fun and fast except for a tricky exposed rock slide and some tore up descents you'll probably walk. (horses? tire skidders?) South and East side are Green Dot. If you're not in a hurry, there are some nice places for a dip in the lake. If you like to stop alot be sure to dope up with deet.

Recommended Route:
Counter clockwise seems to be the standard way to go. At least that way you get the sucky fallen tree part out of the way early.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
The one I just rode today is in the Waldo area but not listed here. That's probably just as well.



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Review Date
September 26, 2003

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Greg Shimonek ,  Racer , from Omaha,NE

Summary:
I had several hours to kills and the guys at the bike shop told me to give it a shot. He said it would take 3-4 hours, and I finished it in two never really running any higher than a 135 heart rate. It was a good time, all single track with no real climbing to speak of. The backside had some technical sections and the front side was very fast and brought a smile to my face. Not a bad trail for the intermediate rider. I would even recommend the front ide between the two camp grounds for the novice.



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Reviews 1 - 5 (19 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5
 


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