Visiting these two neighboring lakes make for an easy and enjoyable day of botanizing. While botanically, Daly Lake is fairly ordinary, the trail around the lake is quite pretty, and there are some interesting floating “bogs on logs”, with sundews growing on partially submerged fallen trees. The real star is Parish Lake, where you can experience a genuine floating bog, a rare habitat in the Cascades. Walking on it (carefully, both for the sake of the plants and so as not to break through) feels like walking on a water bed. The bog is home to so many sundews (both species of Drosera are present here) that the entire area looks red from a distance (you can even see the red in the Google Earth aerial!). Other unusual species are found in the both the bog and the lake. The trail itself does not go through the bog, but you can access it to your right as soon as you hit the lake.
Trail: Parish Lake 1.0 mile round trip (3570–3340′), Daly Lake 1.0 mile loop (3675–3625′)
Location: eastern Linn County; Willamette National Forest, Sweet Home Ranger District
USGS Maps: Coffin Mountain; T12S.R6E.S15
Habitats: lake, bog, wetland, forest
Bloom: June to late August
Drive 7.5 miles north of Santiam Junction on 22. Turn left (west) on Parish Lake Road 2266 (sign is misspelled “Parrish”). Follow this for 3.3 paved miles and then at the intersection of Road 2047, continue straight for 1.9 gravel miles to a trailhead and pullout on the left (south) side of the road. For Daly Lake, head back on 2266 for 1/4 mile to the intersection of Rd 450. Follow this north for 0.4 mile to the trailhead on the right (A parking pass may be necessary at Daly Lake, but none is necessary at Parish Lake).
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