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U.S. Forest Service

Pacific Northwest Region Viewing Area


Todd Lake and Mt. Bachelor A bird's eye view of Todd Lake and Mt. Bachelor, Deschutes National Forest, Oregon. Photo by Tom Iraci.

Marsh marigolds Marsh marigolds, Todd Lake, Deschutes National Forest, Oregon. Photo by Tom Iraci.

Jeffrey's shooting star in a meadow near Todd Lake. Jeffrey's shooting star is one of many wildflowers found in the moist meadows adjacent to Todd Lake on the Deschutes National Forest, Oregon. Photo by Tom Iraci.

Todd Lake

Forest: Deschutes National Forest

District: Bend/Ft. Rock District

Description: Todd Lake is the first of many alpine lakes accessed from the Cascade Lakes Highway. This scenic gem, located west of Mt. Bachelor, lies at 6,100 ft. elevation at the base of Broken Top Mountain. A 1.5-mile trail around the lake provides many opportunities to view a variety of wildflowers in the sub-alpine forest, along the lake shoreline, and in the meadow on the north side of the lake. Todd Lake is a popular recreation area due to its relatively easy access.

Viewing: Jeffrey’s shooting star (Dodecatheon jeffreyi) and white marsh marigold (Caltha leptosepala) are among the first flowers to bloom in meadows still soggy from melting snow. In July-August, Elephant head (Pedicularis groenlandica) can be viewed along the Todd lake shoreline. Newberry’s knotweed (Polygonum newberryi) first appears as brilliant red shoots, pushing its way through the pumice soil as the snow recedes. Other flowers that can be viewed throughout the season include white-bog orchid (Habenaria dilatata), pussypaws (Calyptridium umbellatum), Jacob’s ladder (Polemonium pulcherrimum), pink mountain heather (Phyllodoce empetriformis), swamp laurel (Kalmia microphylla), yellow monkeyflower (Mimulus guttatus), Lewis monkey flower (Mimulus lewisii), false hellebore (Veratrum viride), arrowleaf groundsel (Senecio triangularis), and Indian paintbrush (Castilleja spp.).

Safety First: Care should be taking while hiking. Wear proper footwear and navigate carefully over rocks and tree roots.

Directions: From Bend, Oregon, drive 24.0 miles west on Cascade Lakes Highway (Rd. 46); turn north onto Forest Service Rd. 4600-370. Drive 0.5 miles to the Todd Lake Trailhead parking area and hike about 0.5 mile to the lake.

Closest Town: Bend, Oregon

For More Information: Katie Grenier, Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests Botany Program Manager, (541) 383-5564.