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Explore the Blue mountains trail 

Are you ready to explore the landscapes of northeast Oregon, but can't manage a month-long thru hike? Read our visitor recommendations starting from destination communities along the Blue Mountains Trail.

Joseph Aerial by Sam Beebe CC BY 2.0.jpeg


Joseph is a small mountain town nestled at the northern end of Wallowa Lake. It is a full-service town with a small grocery, laundromat, restaurants, and lodging. It is compact and all services are easily walkable. It also has a vibrant arts community.

Joseph is a popular tourist destination. Accommodations can be scarce and expensive during the summer months, through Labor Day. Enterprise, which is 6 miles down Highway 82, is also a full-service town and another option to consider visiting.

Elevation: 4,150 feet

Population: 1,054

Getting there from the trail: The Wallowa Lake Trailhead, the northern terminus of the Blue Mountains Trail, is approximately 7 miles from Joseph via OR-351.



Troy is a very small unincorporated community located at the confluence of the Grande Ronde and Wenaha Rivers. Troy has few services with limited hours. We recommend that thru-hikers mail resupply boxes to the Troy Lodge.

Elevation: 1,620 feet

Population: 25

Getting there from the trail: The trail goes right through town.



Tollgate is a very small unincorporated community on Oregon Highway 204. Services are limited in Tollgate.

Elevation: 5,045 feet

Population: Varies seasonally

Getting there from the trail: Services are 1.2 miles west on Highway 204.

Granada Theater (La Grande, Oregon) Visitor7 CC BY-SA 3.0.jpeg

La Grande

La Grande marks what we consider the midway point of the Blue Mountains Trail. It is a full-service city with an excellent outfitter, numerous restaurants and lodging options, and nearly any other service for visitors.

Elevation: 2,785 feet

Population: 13,610

Getting there from the trail: The trail passes through the center of La Grande.


Baker City

Baker City is a full-service city that is not on the trail but can serve as a starting/ending point for section hikes on the Elkhorn Crest. It can also be reached via transit or the Elkhorn Taxi from Sumpter.

Elevation: 3,450 feet

Population: 9,800

Getting there from the trail: Baker City is 29 miles from Sumpter, 35 miles from Anthony Lakes, and 45 miles from La Grande.


Anthony Lakes

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Austin Junction

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John Day Oregon Trashbag CC BY-SA 3.0.jpeg

John Day

Downtown John Day is the southern terminus of the Blue Mountains Trail. The town is just north of the Strawberry Mountain Wilderness, at the intersection of Highways 26 and 395.


John Day is a full-service town with a wide variety of restaurants and lodging options. 

Elevation: 3,087 feet

Population: 2,250

Getting there from the trail: The southern terminus of the Blue Mountains Trail is the 1188 Brewery located at 141 E Main St, John Day, OR, in the center of town.

Detailed Route Maps

We have compiled detailed hiker maps using Caltopo for the full 530-mile route, as well as additional miles on alternate trails. These maps are meant to be used with an accompanying Databook that indicates trail conditions and known water availability for each waypoint. Examples of these maps are provided below.

To obtain a copy of the Caltopo maps and Databook, please contact Pip Redding at

Detailed Maps
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