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Hike on the BMT:
Anthony Lakes Loop

Anthony Lakes loop - Day hike

Departing from Anthony Lakes Campground at Anthony Lakes, Oregon, the 8 mile day hike on the Blue Mountains Trail loops from the Anthony Lakes Campground through the North Fork John Day Wilderness and along a short portion of the Elkhorn Crest Trail. It features spectacular views of alpine lakes and the Elkhorn Mountains.

Anthony Lakes, Jared Kennedy.jpg
the stats:
Recreation type: Day hike
Route type: Loop

Mileage: 8 miles round trip, plus option to extend 1.4 miles to Lakes Lookout

Duration: 1 day

Elevation gain/loss (gross): 1,549 feet

Active time hiking (estimated): 5 hours

Time of year: July to October

Physical difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

Logistical difficulty: Easy access

Permits required: $6 Anthony Lakes Day-use Fee. Free, self-issued Wilderness permit at the trailhead. Group size limited to 12 people. All other wilderness restrictions apply.

Planning links:

Trailhead access points: Anthony Lakes CG - USFS link - Google Maps link

Nearby town guide: Anthony Lakes and Baker City

Local US Forest Service Office: Wallowa Whitman National Forest, Whitman Ranger District (Baker City), 541-523-6391

Trail conditions: Hoffer Lakes Trail #1641

Weather forecast at Anthony Lakes: National Weather Service

View of Crawford Meadows, Jared Kennedy.jpg
Trip description:

While Anthony Lakes is best known for its winter ski resort and summer mountain biking trails, it is also a spectacular summer hiking base camp. From the campgrounds and day-use spots along Anthony Lake, or from the Elkhorn Crest Trailhead, you can connect with hiking options along the Blue Mountains Trail.

This loop hike from Anthony Lake Campground takes you up above the lakes and into the mountains. The first stop is Hoffer Lakes at the foot of Lees Peak and Gunsight Mountain. From here, the trail reconnects to the top of the ski resort, where, if you would like to extend the hike, you can also pick up the trail to the Lakes Lookout (0.7 miles one-way) for a great view of Anthony Lakes below. The loop continues on the Crawfish Meadows Trailhead through the North Fork John Day Wilderness, reaching Dutch Flat Saddle. From here, by taking the Elkhorn Crest Trail north, it returns to Anthony Lake.

The North Fork John Day Wilderness was designated and protected in by the U.S Congress in 1984, and it encompasses over 120,000 acres. The North Fork John Day River is the coldest of the tributaries to the mainsteam John Day. The Elkhorn Crest Trail and the broader area around Anthony Lakes are gaining popularity and seeing increased visitation. You can join us in reporting recreation impacts or areas that need additional maintenance using the Recreation Impacts Monitoring System (RIMS) app (contact us for details and to sign up or download the app and get started). This area is also still recovering from past mining impacts, and it supports abundant wildlife; when hiking here, please follow Leave No Trace principles.

maps and elevation profile:
Anthony Lakes Loop Elevation.png
Anthony Lakes Loop Trail Map Thumbnail.png


Full guide with hiking map (3 pages, 3.2 mb)

Map only (1 page, 1.4 mb)

GPX map (23 kb)

Before and After in Baker CitY

On weekend in the summer months, Anthony Lakes opens the Starbottle Saloon where you can get pub fare at the base of the ski resort. The campground and day use area in Anthony Lakes is also a great place to stay for a few takes and take in all that the area has to offer. Baker City is the nearest town to Anthony Lakes. It is a full-service city that is not directly on the Blue Mountains Trail, but it can serve as a starting/ending point for section hikes on the Elkhorn Crest or for a stay at Anthony Lakes. It can also be reached via transit or the Elkhorn Taxi from Sumpter. It is one of the larger towns in Northeast Oregon, with many great restaurants, lodging options, and other amenities.


When visiting Baker City, we recommend stopping for a bite and a beer at Barley Brown's Brew Pub, picking up treats from Sweet Wife Baking, and staying at the historic Geyser Grand Hotel on Main Street. Hiking provisions and gear can be picked up at the Trailhead or ACE Hardware, and food at the Baker City Coop or one of the other large grocery stores in town.

For a full list of amenities, including markets, accommodations, post offices, public transit options, and more places to eat and stay, check out the Blue Mountains Trail Town Guides for Baker City and Anthony Lakes.

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