Van Patten Lake Trailhead

  

Van Patten mountain lake with pine and fir trees around it

The Van Patten Lake Trailhead is a small facility located near the "Little Alps" sand shed a short distance from the Elkhorn Sceninc Bway. The lower trailhead by the sand shed is suitable for passenger cars and trucks with trailers. Most trail users park at the lower trailhead and hike up the first 1 mile of the Van Patten Lake Trail (#1634) on Forest Road 131, and then for the next 1/2 mile on the trail to the lake. Athough there is an small upper trailhead at the end of  Forest Road 131, the road is very narrow with large rocks and gullies. It is accessible only by ATV or 4-wheel drive vehicles.

The Van Patten Lake Trail crosses lodgepole pine forest and a grassy slope with summer wildflowers. The climb up Forest Road 131 and on the horse/hiker trail is steep in places. A panoramic view of the North Powder Valley and Wallowa Mountains displays to the east. Van Patten Lake is dammed for irrigation use, and has several campsites available along the western shore.

At a Glance

Reservations: This site is not reservable.
Area Amenities: Parking
Fees No fees or passes are required for this site
Open Season: June
Usage: Light-Medium
Restrictions: General rules of use and restrictions apply for this developed recreation site. Specific Forest Orders apply to the Van Patten Lake Trail #1634. This includes Forest Order 234 which prohibits all motorized use from the upper trailhead located at the end of Forest Road 131 to the lake (exceptions include snowmobile use with 12 inches of snow on the trail). Motorized use is allowed from the lower trailhead near the Little Alps sand shed on Forest Road 031/031 road to the upper trailhead parking area.
Closest Towns: Baker City, Oregon (33 miles); La Grande, Oregon (43 miles)
Water: No
Restroom: No
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Whitman Ranger District

General Information

Directions:

From Baker City, OR head north on Highway 30 toward Haines approximately 10 miles; In Haines turn left and follow the Anthony Lake Highway signs (turns into Forest Road 73) for 20 miles to Forest Road 730; ; Turn left on Forest Road 130 and go 0.2 miles up to lower trailhead near the Little Alps sand shed; From the lower trailhead hike about 1 mile up Forest Road 131 to the upper trailhead.

From La Grande, OR head south on Interstate 84 for 25 mile to exit 285 in North Powder, Oregon; In North Powder follow the ski area signs on Highway 237 for 4 miles to Ellis Road; Turn left on Ellis Road and go about 1 mile to the Anthony Lake Highway; Turn right and follow the Anthony Lake Highway (becomes Forest Road 73) for 13 miles to Forest Road 130; ; Turn left on Forest Road 130 and go 0.2 miles up to lower trailhead near the Little Alps sand shed; From the lower trailhead hike about 1 mile up Forest Road 131 to the upper trailhead.

Advisory: Forest Road 131 from the lower trailhead to the upper trailhead is a very rough, narrow and rocky road ; suitable for 4-wheel drive vehicles only. It is recommended that users in passenger cars and low clearance vehicles park at the lower site near the sand shed, and walk up Forest Road 131 to the upper trailhead.


Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Activities


Hiking

Hide detail HIDE

Day Hiking

Backpacking

Man and woman hiking with their dogs up mountain trail to Van Patten Lake Rocky steep mountain road up to Van Patten Lake


Horse Riding & Camping

Show detail SHOW

Amenities

Parking 4-5 vehicles at lower trailhead with trailer turnaround
Areas & Activities

Highlights

Location

 
  Latitude : 
44.96225333116627

  Longitude : 
-118.1808518192949

  Elevation : 
7070

 

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Current Roads, Trails, and Campground Conditions Reports

 



https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/wallowa-whitman/recreation/recarea/?recid=52755&actid=51