This steep trail accesses the main destinations of Aneroid Lake and Tenderfoot Pass. Its popularity is somewhat limited because of its arduous nature, making it the perfect trail for the fit and those who enjoy a little extra tranquility.
Access it from the Wallowa Lake Trailhead by going left (follow the sign) up the old service road. After a waterfall and what seems like dozens of switchbacks you’ll come upon the pond that powers the hydro station below. Whew… you’ve made it two miles and you still aren’t actually in designated wilderness. From there on out the journey seems less severe, although you are still quickly climbing until you reach an area of big rocks that many stop at for a rest. Some consider this halfway, but you are now at the 4 mile mark and from here on out things are a little more level- not that it would matter: the scenery is breathtaking and it is full of surprises around almost every corner.
You’ll finally pass a little shallow pond called Roger Lake and in a few minutes you’ll enter above Aneroid Lake where most will finish their journey. Just before that point you’ll see a trail to the right (and possibly a sign) that directs you to several good camping areas.
If you stopped at Aneroid Lake, you’d be amply rewarded, but, if you have the time and energy you’d be truly amazed by the journey and destination to Tenderfoot Pass. This is 'High Alpine' at its finest: you'll know what it’s like ‘Living in a Postcard.’
From the pass you could summit Pete’s Point or search for seashell fossils on Dollar Ridge. Discover the tiny Jewett or Dollar Lakes or take a longer side trip to Bonny Lakes. The Tenderfoot trail connects to Polaris Pass and down to the Lakes Basin. It also connects to the Imnaha trail down to Indian Crossing.
View the Panoramas:
- Harry's Mountain Harry's Mountain
- Tenderfoot Pass Tenderfoot Pass
- Aneroid Lake Aneroid Lake
- Dollar Lake Dollar Lake
- Jewett Lake Jewett Lake
- Postcard Valley Postcard Valley
- Roger Lake Roger Lake
- Tenderfoot Pass Wildflowers Tenderfoot Pass Wildflowers
- The Castle The Castle
- East Fork Trail View East Fork Trail View