Broken Top is a heavily eroded volcano with spectacular views of the Three Sisters. It's a fairly easy ascent - a bit of easy snow and one very short section (10 feet) of 5.1 rock climbing.

Activity Notes

The plan... will require significant physical fitness.

Day 1: We'll approach, and climb Broken Top via the Green Lakes TH, then descend Broken Top, and continue up South Sister, and camp the night in the summit crater (probably on snow). There will be no moon, so it should make for great star gazing.

distance: 11.75 mi, elevation change: +7775', -2892' 

Day 2: We'll descend South Sister, and exit via the Devils Lake TH.

distance: 5.6 mi, elevation change: +75', -4929'

NOTE: We'll do a car shuttle to return to retrieve our cars parked at the Green Lakes TH.


Team Selection: 

I tend towards selecting a diverse, and gender balanced team. Also, I am prioritizing recent BCEP grads (2018, and 2017), and recent ICS grads (2018).


Skills needed: 

  • Physical fitness! We'll be covering a lot of terrain!
  • Basic rock skills (fixed line usage, rappelling)


Approximate Timetable:


  • 7:00 am - start hiking from Green Lakes TH
  • 9:30 am - arrive at Green Lakes
  • noon - arrive at Broken Top summit
  • 2:00 pm - return to Green Lakes
  • 4:30 pm - reach Cirque Lake junction
  • 6:00 pm - reach South Sister summit
  • 6:37 pm - sunset


  • 8 am - break camp
  • 9 am - start hiking
  • 1:30 pm - return to Devils Lake TH


Other Information
Driving Distance from Portland 190 miles
Driving Time from Portland 4 hours
Distance - Round Trip 380 miles
General Route Info Broken Top is a dramatically eroded core of an ancient volcano, with spectacular views of all three sisters and the central Oregon cascades. The climb can be done car to car in a long day, or as a more pleasant 2 day outing with an overnight backpack camp at the popular Green Lakes area.
Expected Duration Car to car in two or more days
Interesting Features Glacier(s)
Relevant Books Oregon High, by Jeff Thomas
Relevant Maps USGS 7 minute series, Broken Top, and Geo-Graphics Three Sisters Google map,-121.7085357,15z/data=!5m1!1e4?hl=en
Useful Links