Yoran Lake-Midnight Lake Loop

November 3, 2002

Was this really November in Oregon? The five hikers who ventured to the Yoran Lake-Midnight Lake hike were treated to a spectacular fall day in the Cascades. Although a fairly long hike, the loop is not particularly strenuous as you only have about 1300 foot elevation gain in 13 miles. The Trapper Creek trailhead is close to Shelter Cove resort, and is accessed by all paved roads. After crossing the railroad, the trail follows Trapper Creek and then climbs gently up to Yoran Lake. You pass a couple of other pretty lakes en route, Karen Lake and no-name lake. Both were frozen over. The trail had many patches of snow, never enough to hinder hiking but enough to show a wide assortment of wildlife footprints (we think one set was bear paws). Our lunch spot on the shore of Yoran Lake was in bright sunshine with a view across the lake to a naked Diamond Peak—practically not a sign of snow on it. We also had a great view of Mt. Yoran. It was hard to leave, but we had miles to go before dark. The bushwhack portion from Yoran Lake to the PCT is easy if Sullivan’s directions are followed; plus there’s a fairly distinct trail for most of the way. Once on the PCT, it’s an easy hike downhill, passing Hidden Lake, Midnight Lake and other ponds before reaching Pengra Pass and a level trail back to the cars. Those hikers who were enjoying what was probably the last balmy weekend day of the year were Dick Hildreth, Bob Huntley, Michelle Tambellini, Barbara Schomaker and leader Chris Stockdale.

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