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Adventures at Kangaroo Lake

A few years ago, my father-in-law Roy invited me on a mid-week fishing excursion to Kangaroo Lake. Since I’m self-employed, my schedule is relatively flexible, so I decided to take the day off work to go adventuring with Roy, his fishing buddy, and Charlie—the cutest corgi ever.

We arrived at the lake early in the morning, and we had the place to ourselves. Also, I was thankful that I dressed in layers because the fall air felt cold and icy. While the guys fished, I explored the area with Charlie and checked out the campground. The campground and bathrooms were clean, and the lake’s walking trail was flat and easy to navigate. I also stumbled across Fen Trail, which leads to the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). I wasn’t brave enough to hike the Fen Trail or the PCT solo, so I decided to save the hike for another time.

The following summer, my cousin Aubrey drove from her home in San Francisco to spend the weekend with us in Siskiyou County. My husband, Logan, and I were excited to show Aubrey some of our favorite outdoor adventuring spots.

The morning after Aubrey arrived we drove to Kangaroo Lake to do some hiking. From Yreka, it took roughly 45-minutes to get to the lake. The sky was blue, and the temperature wasn’t too hot or cold, and we admired the scenery along the way.

After parking at the lake and gathering our things (backpacks, water, cameras, etc.), we found the Fen Trail Head near the parking lot and started walking. According to the U.S. Forest Service, the Fen Trail “is within a designated Botanical Special Interest Area where many unusual botanical and geologic features can be seen.”

I missed that fact along with most of the interpretive signs on the trail because I was so enthralled with the flowers, trees, plants, and small streams. The path is roughly one mile, and the elevation gain is moderate (more details on that here). At the top of the trail, there is an incredible panoramic view of Kangaroo Lake and the surrounding mountains and landscape.

There were a dozen people at the lake, but no one was on the Fen Trail. We took a bunch of photos at the lookout point and quickly found the PCT. We spent the afternoon walking southbound on the PCT, and since winter hadn’t melted away we played in the remaining patches of snow. We also stopped for lunch on the trail and ate delicious sandwiches from Kathy’s Deli & Bakery (located in Montague, CA).

The section we hiked was well maintained, and like Fen Trail the elevation gain was moderate. However, Aubrey got blisters from walking in her new shoes, so we headed back to the lake earlier than we expected. Despite the blisters, Aubrey enjoyed our day trip to Kangaroo Lake—and we did too! The trip was a great way to see the sights in Siskiyou, and I’m grateful Roy introduced me to this special place.

PRO-TIPS

  • Wear good walking shoes.
  • Pack water and a lunch for a picnic on the trail or at the lake.
  • Bring a first-aid kit.
  • Layer your clothing because the weather is variable.
  • More than likely, you won’t have cell service or access to the Internet at the lake, so let your friends and family know where you are going.
  • If you want to venture beyond the Fen Trail and hike the PCT, buy a paper map via the PCT’s website.
  • Got a smartphone? Download the Google Maps app. The app is handy because you can use the maps feature offline. When you’re online, download the maps you need, and you’ll be ready for adventuring. If you’re not sure how to download maps to the app, follow CNET’s instructions.

Additional Details:

  • Kangaroo Lake is in the Klamath National Forest.
  • Camping and trail information can be found here and here.
  • The lake is free for day use but requires a small fee for overnight camping.

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A few years ago, my father-in-law Roy invited me on a mid-week fishing excursion to Kangaroo Lake. Since I’m self-employed, my schedule is relatively flexible, so I decided to take the day off work to go adventuring with Roy, his fishing buddy, and Charlie—the cutest corgi ever.

We arrived at the lake early in the morning, and we had the place to ourselves. Also, I was thankful that I dressed in layers because the fall air felt cold and icy. While the guys fished, I explored the area with Charlie and checked out the campground. The campground and bathrooms were clean, and the lake’s walking trail was flat and easy to navigate. I also stumbled across Fen Trail, which leads to the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). I wasn’t brave enough to hike the Fen Trail or the PCT solo, so I decided to save the hike for another time.

The following summer, my cousin Aubrey drove from her home in San Francisco to spend the weekend with us in Siskiyou County. My husband, Logan, and I were excited to show Aubrey some of our favorite outdoor adventuring spots.

The morning after Aubrey arrived we drove to Kangaroo Lake to do some hiking. From Yreka, it took roughly 45-minutes to get to the lake. The sky was blue, and the temperature wasn’t too hot or cold, and we admired the scenery along the way.

After parking at the lake and gathering our things (backpacks, water, cameras, etc.), we found the Fen Trail Head near the parking lot and started walking. According to the U.S. Forest Service, the Fen Trail “is within a designated Botanical Special Interest Area where many unusual botanical and geologic features can be seen.”

I missed that fact along with most of the interpretive signs on the trail because I was so enthralled with the flowers, trees, plants, and small streams. The path is roughly one mile, and the elevation gain is moderate (more details on that here). At the top of the trail, there is an incredible panoramic view of Kangaroo Lake and the surrounding mountains and landscape.

There were a dozen people at the lake, but no one was on the Fen Trail. We took a bunch of photos at the lookout point and quickly found the PCT. We spent the afternoon walking southbound on the PCT, and since winter hadn’t melted away we played in the remaining patches of snow. We also stopped for lunch on the trail and ate delicious sandwiches from Kathy’s Deli & Bakery (located in Montague, CA).

The section we hiked was well maintained, and like Fen Trail the elevation gain was moderate. However, Aubrey got blisters from walking in her new shoes, so we headed back to the lake earlier than we expected. Despite the blisters, Aubrey enjoyed our day trip to Kangaroo Lake—and we did too! The trip was a great way to see the sights in Siskiyou, and I’m grateful Roy introduced me to this special place.

PRO-TIPS

  • Wear good walking shoes.
  • Pack water and a lunch for a picnic on the trail or at the lake.
  • Bring a first-aid kit.
  • Layer your clothing because the weather is variable.
  • More than likely, you won’t have cell service or access to the Internet at the lake, so let your friends and family know where you are going.
  • If you want to venture beyond the Fen Trail and hike the PCT, buy a paper map via the PCT’s website.
  • Got a smartphone? Download the Google Maps app. The app is handy because you can use the maps feature offline. When you’re online, download the maps you need, and you’ll be ready for adventuring. If you’re not sure how to download maps to the app, follow CNET’s instructions.

Additional Details:

  • Kangaroo Lake is in the Klamath National Forest.
  • Camping and trail information can be found here and here.
  • The lake is free for day use but requires a small fee for overnight camping.