Updated: Nov 10, 2022
A reservoir with a drivable and camp-able shoreline in Mount Hood National Forest.
Lake Name: Clear Lake Lake Coordinates: 45.1802, -121.7049 Lake Elevation: 3500′ Access: Drive up Note: There are multiple different points of access to the lake. There’s a campground, a day use area, and then a whole side of the lake with dispersed camping and 4×4 accessible road. Date: 6-17-20
I went to Clear Lake for the first time last summer. I was exploring back roads and ended up at the lake. I ended up coming back with my mom and dad one weekend and we drove the rocky shore road. There were tons of people camping along the shore. (This was in the last week of July 2019.)
I decided to go back to the lake recently. I went on a Wednesday and there were definitely a lot less people then the last time I was there. I drove the rocky shore road and stopped frequently to get out and take pictures. I ate my lunch by the lake. It was a cool day with a breeze. It was partly sunny and the lake looked idyllic. There were a few boats out fishing and a few people fishing from the shore. But I mostly had the lake to myself on my drive. I personally prefer the west side of the lake (the side with the rocky shore road and dispersed camping) better than the east side with the campground and official day use area. The day use area has a boat launch.
The lake makes a Y type of shape with 3 arms and is rather large. The shoreline is rocky with tons of stumps and there are some stumps poking out of the shallow water.
Two separate times I saw a mama duck with small babies following along behind her on the lake. They were so adorable! They were both common goldeneyes. Sadly I didn’t bring my big camera lens so I wasn’t able to get any good pictures of them.
There is a trail that goes along the south side of the lake, but from what I’ve read it’s mostly going along a road and isn’t anything special. There are so many points of access by car for this lake that I think one could easily see just as much and more without hiking.
How to get there (from Estacada, OR)
Take Hwy 224 out of Estacada for 24 miles. Turn left onto FS 57 and continue for 7.4 miles until the road Y’s. Stay to the left (turns into FS 58) and proceed on FS 58 for 16.3 miles. Turn left onto FS 2660 and continue for 3 miles (at 0.9 miles the road turns to gravel.) Then turn right on to FS 2630 and proceed for 1.7 miles. When the road comes to a T turn right on to FS 240 and continue for 1 mile. There are multiple roads that cut down to the lake. Take one and it will takes you to the lake shore where there is a rocky road that follows the shore of the lake. It lasts for 1.8 miles before it meets up with FS 2630. (The rocky shore road has a sign at the FS 2630 junction with the number 630015 and my Gaia GPS references it as 015.)
Lake Coordinates: 45.1802, -121.7049
Zigzag Ranger District map location: T4S R9E S30
Orange line – rocky shore road Red dot – start of rocky shore road Yellow dot – Clear Lake Campground Blue Dot – day use area (fee area)
My Wild Adventure is not responsible for your safety, any possible injury, or anything that happens if you choose to follow anything on this website. Maps are not intended to be used for navigational purposes, but to give an overview of the route taken. By going outdoors you are solely responsible to know your strengths and limitations, be aware of current conditions and proceed with the appropriate caution. My Wild Adventure is not responsible for your choices and the outcome. Reference my disclaimer for more information on being responsible outdoors.