Diamond Lake is nestled in Douglas County’s scenic backyard in the Umpqua National Forest. While it is a supreme summer hotspot, it also is known to be the perfect winter playground. 79-miles east of Roseburg on Highway 138, Diamond Lake offers cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, tubing and more. They’ve got seven miles of groomed trails and 35 miles of gorgeous backcountry. Not to mention they are also one of the nation’s premier destinations for ice fishing. So, whatever your preference of powder-play – Diamond Lake is the place.
It’s a marshmallow world in the winter – so grab a tube and let’s go! Diamond Lake offers winter snow tubing with a 470-foot wonder carpet lift for easy uphill treks, fast tubes and multiple lanes. The slide hill is open Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and some holidays throughout the winter months. Due to Covid-19, the resort is doing reservations and ticket sales online only. There are no onsite ticket purchases at this time. There is also a limited number of guests allowed in each tubing session, so plan ahead and reserve your snow day. Tickets this year are $36 for three hours and that includes unlimited rides and the tube. There is a 10-percent discount if you purchase four or more tickets for the same tubing session.
Diamond Lake also offers everything you need for a cross-country ski adventure with over 40 miles of snowy trails that accommodate all levels. Hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day for cross-country skiing and trail usage is free. For ski rentals, it is $10 per hour or $25 all day. Check with the resort for trail maps.
Snowmobiling is a very popular activity at Diamond Lake. Rentals start at $200 and resort packages for a stay-and-play are also available. Renters must be 21 years of age with a valid driver's license or snowmobile operator's permit. Only parents may rent snowmobiles for anyone 16 to 20 years old.
Do you know what the fastest-growing winter sport in the world is? Snowshoeing. The activity is easy to learn, gets you outside to explore Oregon’s winter wonderland, is fairly inexpensive and in addition to being a great low-impact exercise, it also poses little risk of injury.
So strap on your shoes already and start exploring. The resort offers snowshoe rentals in all sizes for $10 an hour or $25 for an entire day.
The snow fun can last days with the number of trails Diamond Lake offers. One of the favorites – the 4-mile Silent Creek Loop on the southwest side of Diamond Lake.
Feeling confident? Check out the Mount Bailey snowshoe trail. With a total of nine miles and 2,500 feet in elevation, this is an intermediate trail for someone who is in-shape but wouldn’t consider themselves a pro-snowshoer. Plus, there are awesome views of Mount Thielson at the top, so you’ll get to take a break.
Mount Thielsen also offers a very challenging trail. It’s one of Oregon’s most overlooked, hidden gems in the hiking world. The trail is 10 miles and although you can’t get to the very top in the winter, you can get outstanding views.
Diamond Lake is being called one of the nation's premier ice-fishing locations. The season is typically from January to March, but varies with weather. As of January 2, the ice was 3-inches thick. Anglers can check fishing and water conditions at Diamond Lake on the Diamond Lake Resort Facebook page, or call 541-793-3333 for updates.
More than 3,500 anglers on average enjoy Diamond Lake ice fishing and catch rates range from 0.5 to 1.7 fish per angler with an estimated maximum of 6,000 trout harvested. It is rumored that the best areas for ice fishing are on the north end of the lake near the lodge and the marina.
For additional information on winter activities at Diamond Lake, call the resort at 541-793-3333.