Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
323.00 ft (98.45 m)
Trail type
2.90 mi (4.67 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Little Three Creek Lake Trail is a relatively easy hike that offers great views and leads to the lovely namesake lake. This is a good hike for families with younger children, or those who were perhaps unable to acquire the newly required permit to hike the Tam McArthur Rim Trail.

The trailhead is located near Three Creek Lake, a popular summer destination for campers and fishermen. Follow the trail as it heads into the woods and soon comes to a wilderness permit box. Little Three Creek Lake lies just outside of the Three Sisters Wilderness so you will not need to self issue a permit here unless you plan on heading elsewhere past the lake.

The trail continues on through some sparse pine forest with many dead trees. You’ll cross a small stream and come to a great view out across a meadow with the Tam McArthur Rim in the distance. A trail junction follows - take a left to continue heading toward the lake.

The trail gains a slight bit of elevation, including one minor rocky section of trail, as it follows the stream fairly closely. You’ll soon reach the main attraction, Little Three Creek Lake. This lovely lake is nestled at the base of the Tam McArthur Rim and is a great place to explore, relax, or cast a line in the water. Hikers can follow a path around the lake to explore more, or retrace their steps to return back to the trailhead.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



Scenic hike to a lake. Views of the Tam McArthur Rim.

Trailhead Elevation

6,524.00 ft (1,988.52 m)

Highest point

6,705.00 ft (2,043.68 m)


Near lake or river
Family friendly
Big vistas
Bird watching
Big Game Watching

Typically multi-day


Suitable for


Permit required




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