Hosmer Lake

Hosmer LakeThe lake is a hidden jewel of green and blue surrounded by dark green forest. Thickets of bulrush wands hide the most secretive wildlife and fish. At the north end, water drains into a porous rim of lava. The best way to experience this lake is by canoe, but a shoreline hike will still produce wondrous sights and sounds. Take your camera to capture the spectacular view of Mt. Bachelor.

Hosmer is a “fly fishing only” lake well known for its breath taking viewsof Mt. Bachelor, South Sisters, Broken top, wildlife viewing and the big Atlantic salmon, brook trout and rainbows that are quite visible in this shallow clear lake. John Huber (1998 compares Hosmer Lake to a spring creek because many of the fish are easy to see, giving you a clear view of one denial after another. At Hosmer Lake, the Atlantic salmon average 16 inches (largest in the 22 inch range) and brook trout average 14 inches. Hosmer Lake is also a very popular lake for canoeists because of the beautiful surroundings, the abundant wildlife, waterfowl and easily seen large fish swimming around.


  • Bring insect repellant!
  • Secure all your food items so black bears don't become a nuisance or safety hazard, which would require their euthanasia.
  • Deep snow commonly limits road access except during the months of June through October.

Motorized "electric motors only" and non-motorized boats are allowed on this body of water. 

See Hosmer Lake Boating Site for more information.

General Information


From Bend: At Jct. of Third St. (Hwy. 97) & Greenwood Ave. (Hwy. 20), travel south on Third St. for 0.3 mile to Franklin Ave, turn west onto Franklin Ave. for 1.2 miles to Galveston Ave, turn west onto Galveston Ave. for 0.4 mile to Forest Road 46 (Cascade Lakes Hwy.)  Turn South onto Forest Lake 46 for 33.9 miles to Forest Road 4625, turn east onto Forest Lake 4625 for 1.2 miles to Hosmer Lake and South Campground.

Total Distance: 37 miles.  Estimated Time: 50 minutes

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Lake and Pond Fishing

ODFW Management Policies for Hosmer Lake

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife currently manages Hosmer Lake for hatchery produced Atlantic salmon consistent with the Featured Species Fish Management Alternative for trout. They plan to discontinue the stocking of brook trout. Hosmer Lake will switch to hatchery produced rainbow trout consistent with the Featured Species Fish Management Alternative for trout if the Atlantic salmon egg take ever fails.

What To Expect

  • Vehicle Access: From Bend the most scenic route is to take Century Drive (FS Road 46) to about mile post 35 and then turn left onto 4625 (Elk Lake/Hosmer Lake sign).
  • Fishing Access: To fish the best fishing areas, you need a boat (electric motors only), float tube or canoe. No angling from motor-propelled craft while motor is operating. Bank access is not very possible due to the vegetation.
  • Boating Regulations:   "Electric Motors Only" See boating regulations.
  • Fish Species Present: Atlantic Salmon and Brook trout
  • Physical Characteristics: Size:160 surface acres; Average depth of 3.2 feet and a maximum of 12 feet; Elevation: 4,966 feet.
  • When/How to fish: Best fishing action is when the ice melts in the spring (and the road is open) and when the weather cools in the fall. Get a weekly fishing report from Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
  • Popular Fishing Methods: Fly fishing only
  • Bait/Lure Fishing Method: Fly fishing only
  • Fly Fishing Methods: Fly anglers usually fish with long tapered leaders (15 ft. or more), fish in the channels only during low light conditions.
  • Insect Hatch/Flies to Use: Check the Hosmer Lake Major Hatches chart below.
  • Camping Information: South Campground and Mallard Marsh Campground 

Sources: Upper Deschutes River Subbasin Fish Management Plan, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Upper Deschutes Fish District, October 1996.

Viewing Wildlife

This is a place to find American bittern, Virginia rail, sora, three-toed woodpecker, black-backed woodpecker, and sometimes wood duck. It's also one of only two locations in central Oregon for Atlantic salmon. Another fish in the glass-clear water is brook trout. Meadows along the lake's northwest shore are grazed by Rocky Mountain elk. You might encounter common nighthawk, Costa's hummingbird, gray jay, Clark's nutcracker, and three kinds of blackbird (Brewer's, red-winged, and yellow-headed). Black bear are an occasional night-time visitor to campgrounds.

Featured Wildlife Groups:

  • Amphibians/Reptiles
  • Birds of Prey
  • Shore/Wading Birds
  • Songbirds
  • Waterfowl
  • Hoofed Mammals
  • Bear
  • Bats
  • Fish


  • Amphibians/Reptiles
  • Birds of Prey
  • Shore/Wading Birds
  • Songbirds
  • Waterfowl
  • Hoofed Mammals
  • Bear
  • Bats
  • Fish

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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