Sparks Lake

  • Easy (to Davis Canyon)
  • 1.6-mile loop
  • 50 feet elevation gain
  • Open early July to early November

  • Easy (to lava knoll)
  • 2.8-mile loop
  • 150 feet elevation gain

Oregon’s late photographer laureate, Ray Atkeson, knew the weird lava shore of Sparks Lake was the best place to take stunning shots of South Sister. Now it’s also one of the best places to take kids for a hike, on a trail that squeezes through lava canyons and emerges at the lakeshore’s startling reflections of snowpeaks.

From Bend, drive …

This chapter is an excerpt from 100 Hikes/Travel Guide: Central Oregon Cascades.