Metolius-Windigo Trail #99


This trail is more than 100 miles long and begins west of Sisters, Oregon at the Bear Valley Trailhead and runs south to Windigo Pass south of Crescent Lake. This is a long trail that can be accessed via multiple trailheads.

The trail was created around 1980 by linking sections of existing trails, primarily to serve long-distance horse riders seeking an alternative to the Pacific Crest Trail #2000.

Due to its lower elevation, this trail is snow-free longer than higher elevation trails. The trail passes through a wide variety of scenic terrain and forest types.

Because the Metolius-Windigo Trail is made up of segments of various trails and crosses many roads, junctions are marked with MW logo blazers, and interspersed with yellow diamonds.

Trail Maps

The Metolius-Windigo Trail #99 briefly enters the Three Sisters WildernessWilderness 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: The trail enters the Three Sisters Wilderness at three different points between the Lucky Lake Trailhead and the Many Lakes Trailhead. There are two types of entry permits required between June 15 and October 15 for entering the Three Sisters Wilderness from these trailheads.
  • Overnight Use
  • Day Use
    • Free, self-issue Wilderness Permit (available at the trailhead) between June 15 and October 15.
Check out Recreation.gov for more information or call 1-877-444-6777.
Restrictions:
  • Wilderness restrictions apply in Wildernesses. Please click here for special restrictions for each Wilderness.
  • 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; Sisters, Oregon; Crescent, Oregon; La Pine, Oregon
Passes: Some trailheads require a valid recreation pass. Check our Recreation Passes and Permits page for details.
Information Center: Deschutes National Forest Supervisor's Office
63095 Deschutes Market Road
Bend, OR 97701
(541) 383-5300

General Information

Directions:

This long-distance horse trail can be accessed from many different trailheads on the Bend/Fort Rock, Sisters, and Crescent Ranger Districts.

The Bend Ranger District section of the trail is best accessed from (north to south): Todd Creek, Lucky Lake, Corral Swamp, and Round Meadow Trailheads.

All are along or just off Century Drive, beginning with Todd Creek, 24 miles west of Bend.
 


Activities

Mountain Biking

Day Hiking

Backpacking

Horse Riding

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities

Location

 
  Area/Length : 
120 miles

  Elevation : 
4600 - 6900