WILLAMETTE NATIONAL FOREST
WALDO LAKE WILDERNESS
Activity: Kayaking, Scenic Views
Date: June 3, 2020
What a wonderful day to be experiencing Oregon at it’s best. I joined my good friend and Fraternity Brother Bruce for several days of journeying into incredible beauty, as he hosted these first days of Summer “Pursuing Balance Through Adventure“. Our days were filled with some of the bluest skies you’ll ever see, stunning views of the snow capped Cascade Mountains and on this day from a kayak, surrounded by deep sapphire blue water.
Waldo Lake is the second largest and second deepest natural lake in Oregon. It’s waters are some of the purest and cleanest on earth. On a calm day it is said that you can see over 100 feet deep. The lake is a little less than 6 miles long by 3 miles wide, and the nearest major city is Eugene about 70 miles south. Waldo Lake is surrounded by thick, green, lush forests of Douglas Firs and Western Hemlock, and it is a perfect spot for hiking, mountain biking, camping, swimming and kayaking.
It was early in the season, as we did hit a few patches of snow driving along our route, but it was crazy that we had this big beautiful lake all to ourselves. We launched from Shadow Bay and we only saw a few other people- some hikers and a mountain biker. There was a light, but building breeze as we paddled through the indigo water, and took in views of the mountains to include Broken Top, South Sister and Middle Sister. We headed across the lake against the wind thinking if it really came up strong that it would be at our back for our return trip. We also figured that once we got to the other shore the forest would provide a wind break as well. We put in some miles as we struck out for Rhododendron Island which wasn’t in bloom, but full of natural beauty just the same. We circumnavigated the small island taking pictures and video to recreate Bruce’s daughter‘s perfect day, which the two experienced last year together.
If timing is everything then it sounds like we hit the nail on the head. Not only was the weather perfect, but it sounded like we dodged a bullet. We kayaked Hosmer Lake earlier in the morning, and met a Stand Up Paddle Boarder that told us his favorite lake was Waldo Lake because of it’s vast beauty and it’s deep blue water, but that he would never go there again due to the mosquitos. Well, we seemed to have escaped that issue. We experienced none of that, although we did bring the insecticide and head nets. The hikers we encountered in the parking lot, who make this an annual pilgrimage, said that this is the perfect time to come. It is all timing when everything just opens up with the snow melt and before the mosquitos are out in force.
The water was amazing, the scenery was stunning, the exercise was perfect, recanting our college days was awesome, what a great time! When can we do it again?
Thanks for joining Bruce and I as we paddled- “Pursuing Balance Through Adventure“, on this pristine and gorgeous lake in the Wilds of Central Oregon. It doesn’t matter the question a little wilderness is the answer. Good, friends, paddles, blue sky, blue water- “Ya’ Just Gotta Love It!“ Bruce and I still have adventures left to put to pen. So make sure that you COMMENT, LIKE, FOLLOW and SHARE– you don’t want to miss a single moment to be inspired by nature. Hopefully this will get you out there in the wilderness taking it all in. It’s good for the soul. Need a hat like my PBTA logo cap? The answer is yes you do, lol. SHOP APPAREL. Need adventure? Again same answer- yes you do, so go to the menu- there are suggestions for adventures all over the West. Each of the locations has a separate website and you should check them out. They all need to be FOLLOWED independently.
See you in the great outdoors,
Pursuing Balance Through Adventure