Hogan Lake 7-14-21

Photos by Jerry and Linda

What's better than a  hike to a mountain lake?...How about a brand new hike to two beautiful, swimmable mountain lakes!

Your scouting team had been thinking about exploring the hike from Taylor Lake to Hogan Lake just west of Etna Summit in CA since February 2020. Finally on Wednesday morning it all came together and we hit the road to Cali at 7:30 am. We left the Rogue Valley heat and smoke behind and headed south into what we were not sure. But by the time we made the turn off at Yreka for Etna south on CA-3 we could see the majority of smoke in Northern California was east of I-5. Visibility was good west of the Etna summit for about half a mile.

Jerry and I met up with Randy and Linda just past the summit where the PCT heads south. They followed us 1/4 mile down the road to the turn off on the left marked by the sign "Taylor Lake TH 2 miles". It's a rough and rocky uphill dirt road that you take slow but finally come to a nice paved parking area with a pit potty.

It's a short walk over to Taylor Lake. A sunny lake that had blooming lily pads near the north shoreline. We'd fully enjoy Taylor when we returned from our hike to Hogan Lake; but now we walked back to the sign for Hogan and started this new hike by crossing a dried creek.

The Hogan trail wraps around the westside of Taylor and then switchbacks into the forests above the lake. Taylor Lake is at 6,400' as is the parking. The 3.2 mile trail to Hogan takes you up to about 6,900' followed by a long descent through green, flowering meadows to Hogan Lake at 6,000'. We had a relaxing lunch at Hogan. Both lakes are suitable for swimming, but at lunch we spent our time admiring the granite walls rising up from the lake with water streaming down from springs in the rocks.

The return hike can be a bit of a slog getting back to 6900' but if you take it slow and enjoy the beautiful surroundings it's highly doable. By the time you complete the downhill to Taylor you're feeling good and ready for a refreshing dip in the lake! We judged the water to be clear and about 68 degrees on Wednesday.

The weather was good and mostly in the 70s at above 6,000', no smoke on the trail.

We left Taylor about 3:30 and headed back to Etna for their great pizza and refreshments. Back in Ashland by 6:30.

This new two lake hike is 7.6 miles RT and about 1400' of gain. I will lead this hike as a Bonus Hike that we would do on a Wednesday with an 8:00 am start. If you like new hikes, with moderate climbing, and enjoy nature's beauty including wildflowers, granite mountains and two swimmable lakes, then this hike is for you! Let me know if you're interested and we'll plan it for later this summer.

Your AHG scouting team,
Jerry, Randy, Linda, and Rich

Track download: Hogan Lake 7-14-21.gpx

Ashland Hiking Home

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00-Google Earth of track 2021-07-14.jpg
01-Dicey Access Road-Good Parkiing.jpg
01-Dicey Access Road-Good Parkiing.jpg
02-Maybe .5 mile to Taylor Lk.jpg
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