Tucked away in stands of pine within the Cascades of Central Oregon, the Irish and Taylor Lakes area is lovely and often quieter than other, more easily accessible lakes on the forest. This area has hiking, dispersed camping, fishing, and water recreation opportunities. Mosquitoes are plentiful here - be prepared! Visitors will first pass Taylor Lake on the left and Irish Lake second, on the right.

This trailhead accesses the Pacific Crest Trail, which goes along the west shore of Irish Lake.

Please note: It's recommended that visitors only access this area using a 4x4 high clearance vehicles. FS Road 4636 leading to the lakes past Little Cultus Lake is extremely rough.

The Irish-Taylor Trailhead leads to the Three Sisters Wilderness shortly after leaving the trailhead. Wilderness Permits are required. See "Permit Info" below for more details.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Please use caution when recreating in areas that were impacted by the 2022 Cedar Creek Fire. A burned landscape presents a number of safety hazards that either did not exist prior to the fire or have been exacerbated by the effects of the fire. In some cases, these hazardous conditions may persist for several years after a fire. Be very aware of your surroundings, follow warning signs, area closures and directions from agency personnel, and pay particular attention to these potential safety hazards. Be especially wary of hazard trees after rain events or during wind. When recreating in a burned area:
  • LOOK UP for upslope burned areas, snags, and exposed rocks that may fall. 
  • LOOK DOWN for debris from falling rocks, erosion – especially at road and trail edges, and ash pits (which may form from root pockets or stumps of burned trees). 
  • LOOK AROUND. Be situationally aware. Check the weather before you travel, including at higher elevations. Wind, rain, ice and snow can increase the risk of tree fall, rock fall, slides and other hazards. Flash floods and landslide risks are elevated below severely burned areas. 
  • LOOK BELOW the surface of standing water and moving water for floating logs, submerged trees and other debris, which can strike or entangle swimmers and boaters and damage other infrastructure. 
LEARN MORE about impacted trails & recreation sites. See the Willamette National Forest for their information regarding the Cedar Creek Fire burned area on the Willamette National Forest.
Permit Info: For more information on the two different types of wilderness permits, please click here.
  • Overnight Use
    • Central Cascades Wilderness Permit between the Friday before Memorial Day and the last Friday in September.
    • Free, self-issue Wilderness Permit required between the last Friday in September and October 31 (available at trailhead).
  • Day Use
    • Free, self-issue Wilderness Permit (available at the trailhead) between the Friday before Memorial Day and October 31.
Check out Recreation.gov for more information or call 1-877-444-6777.
Restrictions: Wilderness restrictions apply.
  • Maps of areas where special restrictions apply: 
  • Motorized and mechanical equipment (including bicycles and drones) are prohibited in the Wilderness
  • Groups must be under 12 people and 12 head of stock
  • Build campfires at least 100 feet away from water
  • Pack in / Pack out!
  • “Take only pictures, leave only footprints” — please refrain from cutting, damaging, or gathering vegetation or other forest items (e.g. rocks, artifacts, etc.)
  • Please bury human waste 6-8 inches deep and at least 200 feet away from water
Closest Towns: Bend, Oregon
Passes: No recreation pass required.
Information Center: Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District, Deschutes National Forest

General Information


From Bend, follow the Cascade Lakes Highway west for 46 miles. Turn right on Forest Service Road 4635, when you see a sign for Cultus Lake. In less than 1 mile, turn left on Forest Service Road 4630, where you see a sign that says Little Cultus Lake, 3 miles, and Irish and Taylor lakes, 7 miles.


Lake and Pond Fishing

Day Hiking



Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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