August 28, 1985
Nine hikers started up the Pacific Crest Trail north of the Santiam Highway at 10:25 a.m. on a beautiful Wednesday morning. We were headed for Booth Lake in the Jefferson Wilderness. A short hike north to the Square Lake Trail, then east for about a mile where the trail trends northeast for maybe half a mile then north as it approaches the south end of Square Lake. There is a good view of Three Fingered Jack from above the lake as the trail bends northward, then the trail is essentially northward above the west shoreline of the lake and continues on past the lake through a lovely meadow full of huckleberry bushes. Continuing northward for a mile and a half we then reached our destination, Booth Lake, at 12:15 p.m. and gloried in the beauty of the place.
This particular trip was a series of ups and downs as the trail is somewhat undulating. Actually the trail goes downhill most of the way from the Crest Trail to Square Lake (we were especially conscious of that on the way out when we had to trudge uphill on our return). From Square Lake northward there is more uphill, but some downhill too which reminds one of a roller coaster. The parking lot at this Pacific Crest Trail juncture is approximately 4900 feet while Square Lake is 4800 feet, however it seemed the elevation difference, as we hiked, was more than 100 feet. From Square to Booth we gained about 300 feet on a trail that had its ups and downs.
While having our lunch on the shore and chatting about this and that, we also enjoyed the wind-made ripples on the lake surface reminding us of dancing diamonds as the disturbed water caught the rays of the sun. After lunch two hikers opted to nap or rest (and watch our packs) while the other seven walked around the lake on a trail that sometimes disappeared in blowdown, but we managed to find it again and return to our starting point on the east side of the lake—it only took us 20 minutes. We had good views of Three Fingered Jack too.
On the return trip we stopped at the huckleberry meadow to feast on the ripe, blue berries. In fact, one person harvested enough to take home—I called him “Blueberry Lew”. Everyone enjoyed the hike back to the cars on this day that was perfect in every respect—sunny, delightfully warm, exhilarating exercise, and a wonderfully congenial group who were Pat Anderson, Ross Carletta, Mary Catlin, Judith Engle, Charley Korns, Lois Morse, Joyce Strassberg, Lew Ward and Lois Schreiner, leader. (Lew had a little mishap on the way home—lost his fan belt before reaching the Clear Lake Cutoff, but he managed to travel about 30 miles to the Texaco Station below McKenzie Bridge and had it repaired. Fortunately he didn’t do any damage to his engine.) All arrived safely in Eugene at 5:30 p.m.