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Trip – Waldo Lake

a flock of seagulls are swimming in a body of water

Lying high on the western slopes of the Oregon Cascades, Waldo Lake is one of the largest natural lakes in Oregon (9.8 square miles with a maximum depth of 427 feet). It has no permanent inlet to bring nutrients into the lake for plant growth. The lack of plant life contributes to its purity. You can see to depths of 120 feet on a calm day.

Waldo Lake is one of the largest natural lakes in Oregon, and the second deepest. The lake is the source of the nationally-designated Wild and Scenic North Fork of the Middle Fork Willamette River. Waldo Lake is surrounded on three sides by the 39,000 acre Waldo Lake Wilderness, designated by Congress in 1984 to protect the area’s outstanding forests, scenic mountains, and backcountry recreation values.

Many visitors value the Waldo Lake area for its outstanding recreation opportunities, solitude, and scenic beauty.


Waldo Lake is a large natural lake, approximately 31 miles east of Oakridge and 70 miles from the Eugene, Springfield area. Waldo is located at an elevation of 5,414 feet in the Oregon Cascades. To reach Waldo Lake from I-5, travel east on Highway 58 about 60 miles to the junction of Forest road 5897. Proceed north, eight miles to the south portion of the lake, or 14 miles to the northern reaches of the lake.

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